Pecan Crusted Fish Sticks

Yum, thumb yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son and I could eat them for breakfast, approved lunch and dinner. This submission is from my sister. She admits to becoming so smitten with this recipe of banana pancakes they had eaten them at least three times.

The addition of oatmeal gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. I used plain yogurt, check because I always have plain yogurt on hand, and grounded whole oats. I would suggest using the quick oats if you are not crazy over the texture of whole grain baked goods.

Source: Cooks.com by Cookie
4 ripe bananas
1/2 cup low-fat or whole milk
1/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter melted
2/3 cup cake flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
warm maple syrup, for serving

Heat oven to 200 degrees.

Mash 3 of the bananas with fork in a medium bowl; stir in milk, sour cream, eggs and 2 tablespoons of the butter in medium bowl; set aside.

Combine flour, oatmeal, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Fold banana mixture into flour mixture, stirring just until blended (do not over mix).

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons butter in large skillet over medium to medium-high heat; pour 1/4-cup portions of the batter into the skillet, spacing them apart. Cook, in batches, until bubbles cover surface of pancakes and underside are lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Gently turn over; cook until other sides are browned, about 2 minutes. Transfer to oven on a baking sheet to keep warm, while remaining pancakes cook.

Meanwhile, slice remaining banana to top pancakes; add maple syrup to taste.

Variations:
– Use whole oats processed in a blender or food processor in place of the instant oatmeal.
– Or soak the whole oats in the milk for 3 minutes before adding to the rest of the ingredients. You may need to add a little more milk if the batter becomes to thick.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.
Yum, thumb yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son and I could eat them for breakfast, approved lunch and dinner. This submission is from my sister. She admits to becoming so smitten with this recipe of banana pancakes they had eaten them at least three times.

The addition of oatmeal gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. I used plain yogurt, check because I always have plain yogurt on hand, and grounded whole oats. I would suggest using the quick oats if you are not crazy over the texture of whole grain baked goods.

Source: Cooks.com by Cookie
4 ripe bananas
1/2 cup low-fat or whole milk
1/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter melted
2/3 cup cake flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
warm maple syrup, for serving

Heat oven to 200 degrees.

Mash 3 of the bananas with fork in a medium bowl; stir in milk, sour cream, eggs and 2 tablespoons of the butter in medium bowl; set aside.

Combine flour, oatmeal, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Fold banana mixture into flour mixture, stirring just until blended (do not over mix).

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons butter in large skillet over medium to medium-high heat; pour 1/4-cup portions of the batter into the skillet, spacing them apart. Cook, in batches, until bubbles cover surface of pancakes and underside are lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Gently turn over; cook until other sides are browned, about 2 minutes. Transfer to oven on a baking sheet to keep warm, while remaining pancakes cook.

Meanwhile, slice remaining banana to top pancakes; add maple syrup to taste.

Variations:
– Use whole oats processed in a blender or food processor in place of the instant oatmeal.
– Or soak the whole oats in the milk for 3 minutes before adding to the rest of the ingredients. You may need to add a little more milk if the batter becomes to thick.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.

Nuts have been given such a bad rap for their high fat content. The truth is raw nuts do contain a heart healthy fat and are packed full of protein. Pecans are high in plant sterols which can aide in the prevention of heart disease. Plant sterols have the ability to block your body from absorbing cholesterol lowering your LDL. When eaten in moderation pecans in particular are a great source of vitamins and minerals.

The family will go nuts over these hearty Pecan Crusted Fish Sticks.

Source: Parents Magazine December 2010
1 pound Atlantic cod fillets, here rinsed and patted dry
1 cup pecan halves
1 cup torn whole-wheat bread pieces
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, this lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Coat a wire baking rack with nonstick cooking spray and place on a baking sheet or in a shallow baking pan.

Cut fish into about 14 3″ by 1″ strips.

Place pecans, bread pieces and salt in a food processor; pulse until fine. Place in a bowl or on a large plate. Put flour and eggs in separate bowls.

Lightly coat cod in flour. Dip in egg and roll in pecan mixture. Put fish on rack; coat with cooking spray.

Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until golden.

Variations:
– The eggs may be replaced with milk or water.
– Swap the flour for ground flaxseed meal.

Family Togetherness: A Tradition of Handicrafts

Springtime Chocolate Nests

The birth of Spring is a marvelous sight to see here in the Valley. The medians along the highway flourish with a backdrop of orange and red poppies in addition to random purple and yellow wildflowers. The once boring lifeless hills awaken with the fresh scents of vibrant greens. The fragrant air recently cleaned by the passing rainstorm breathes life and beauty into the sleeping earth.

These little chocolate nests are just as delightful as the surrounding landscape. They are a little messy to begin with but they are so darn cute. They would make an adorable place setting to welcome guests to for Easter day dinner or an extra special treat at a tea party. You could even share one with the Spring Bunny. So don the aprons and let’s make some Springtime Chocolate nests.

8 oz dark, patient semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips
1 bag (2 1/2 cups) chow mein noodles
Small egg shaped candies
Waxed paper

Place the chocolate in a bowl and microwave on medium for 30 second intervals, check stirring each time, order until melted. Or place the chocolate in a heat proof bowl set over simmering water, stirring until melted.

Gently stir in the chow mein noodles.

Divide mixture into 5-6 mounds on the waxed paper shaping to form the nest with an indentation in the middle. Let set 15-20 minutes. Place a few eggs in the middle.

Springtime Chocolate Nests

The birth of Spring is a marvelous sight to see here in the Valley. The medians along the highway flourish with a backdrop of orange and red poppies in addition to random purple and yellow wildflowers. The once boring lifeless hills awaken with the fresh scents of vibrant greens. The fragrant air recently cleaned by the passing rainstorm breathes life and beauty into the sleeping earth.

These little chocolate nests are just as delightful as the surrounding landscape. They are a little messy to begin with but they are so darn cute. They would make an adorable place setting to welcome guests to for Easter day dinner or an extra special treat at a tea party. You could even share one with the Spring Bunny. So don the aprons and let’s make some Springtime Chocolate nests.

8 oz dark, patient semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips
1 bag (2 1/2 cups) chow mein noodles
Small egg shaped candies
Waxed paper

Place the chocolate in a bowl and microwave on medium for 30 second intervals, check stirring each time, order until melted. Or place the chocolate in a heat proof bowl set over simmering water, stirring until melted.

Gently stir in the chow mein noodles.

Divide mixture into 5-6 mounds on the waxed paper shaping to form the nest with an indentation in the middle. Let set 15-20 minutes. Place a few eggs in the middle.

A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, pharm knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, website like this fixing electronics, approved to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. By definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing. Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Instruments
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects

Flavorful Rice

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, medical optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, price salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, healing place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, medical optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, price salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, healing place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating for me at time. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, abortion you must first understand your cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, cost Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are stil considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

Standard and Commercial grades are sold as ungraded or “store brand” meat.

When the meat appears darker, and the fat takes on an oily more yellowish appearance, it is a good indication that it is well below Choice grade.ot Safeway or Albertson’s anymore because they are pushing their own brandings of Rancher’s Reserve and Blue Ribbon
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:

so you probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” or “standing rib roast.” A boneless rib roast may be called “eye of the rib” roast–or if the ribs are still attached, a “standing rib” roast. The meat will be more flavorful if you roast it with the ribs still attached, but a boneless roast is definitely easier to carve.
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making the steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib: The blessed king of all cuts often to referred to as a 7 bone roast or rib-eye. The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

The rib is
Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

TRib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, medical optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, price salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, healing place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating for me at time. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, abortion you must first understand your cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, cost Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are stil considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

Standard and Commercial grades are sold as ungraded or “store brand” meat.

When the meat appears darker, and the fat takes on an oily more yellowish appearance, it is a good indication that it is well below Choice grade.ot Safeway or Albertson’s anymore because they are pushing their own brandings of Rancher’s Reserve and Blue Ribbon
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:

so you probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” or “standing rib roast.” A boneless rib roast may be called “eye of the rib” roast–or if the ribs are still attached, a “standing rib” roast. The meat will be more flavorful if you roast it with the ribs still attached, but a boneless roast is definitely easier to carve.
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making the steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib: The blessed king of all cuts often to referred to as a 7 bone roast or rib-eye. The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

The rib is
Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

TRib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.
Granola is a combination of grains (particularly oats), treatment nuts, seek dried seeds and fruits seasoned with spices. It makes a terrific breakfast cereal with yogurt or milk. Take some along for a quick pick-me-up snack. Homemade granola is not like the hard clusters found in cereal boxes on the grocery store shelves. Although mixed with a medium it can be made into a portable snack bar or nuggets. I love Jen’s recipe the best for cereal because it is light with a pleasant hint of vanilla. It is not overly sweetened either. The only place I could find unsweetened coconut and real coconut flavoring was at the health food store such as Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods.

Jen’s Notes:
“This recipe can also be cooked on Low in a crockpot. It’ll take a couple of hours – stir frequently for even browning. I suppose you could make a half batch, but since it stays good a while and we eat it for breakfast and snacks, I prefer to make a whole recipe.”

Source: Jennifer West
1/2 cup Honey
1 cup Oil
2 teaspoon Vanilla
2 teaspoon Coconut Flavoring
1 cup Dry Milk
3 cups Unsweetened Dried Coconut
7 cups Oats
1/4 cup brown sugar or 1/2 teaspoon Stevia

Combine the liquid ingredients (I use a glass measuring cup because it’s easier to pour into the dry ingredients in the next step) and heat in the microwave for a minute or so while you combine the remaining ingredients.

Stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed. Stir the liquid ingredients in the measuring cup to combine. Slowly pour the liquid ingredients into the oat and coconut mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until liquid ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide granola between two 13 x 9 baking pans. Smooth out tops for even browning. Bake at 325 for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir to ensure even browning. (I use a spatula to lift and turn the mixture onto itself, working around the outside of the pan, then lifting and turning the cereal in the center.) Redistribute evenly in the pans, smooth the tops and return to the oven. Bake 10 more minutes, and stir again. Bake another 5 minutes and stir. Bake another 5 minutes, if necessary – you want a nice golden brown, but not too dark. After removing from the oven, stir a final time (or the cereal that’s in contact with the pan will get too brown). Makes about 1 gallon.

Variations:
-Add 1/2 cup each type of chopped nuts if adding more than one: walnuts, almonds, pecans or whole pine nuts. Reduce oil to 3/4 cups.
– 1/2 cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
-Add 1/2 cup dried fruit such as raisins, cherries, blueberries, dates or cranberries. Dried fruit such as apricots will need to be chopped first.
-2 tablespoons wheat germ or flax meal.
-1 tablespoon cinnamon.
-1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, medical optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, price salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, healing place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating for me at time. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, abortion you must first understand your cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, cost Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are stil considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

Standard and Commercial grades are sold as ungraded or “store brand” meat.

When the meat appears darker, and the fat takes on an oily more yellowish appearance, it is a good indication that it is well below Choice grade.ot Safeway or Albertson’s anymore because they are pushing their own brandings of Rancher’s Reserve and Blue Ribbon
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:

so you probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” or “standing rib roast.” A boneless rib roast may be called “eye of the rib” roast–or if the ribs are still attached, a “standing rib” roast. The meat will be more flavorful if you roast it with the ribs still attached, but a boneless roast is definitely easier to carve.
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making the steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib: The blessed king of all cuts often to referred to as a 7 bone roast or rib-eye. The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

The rib is
Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

TRib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.
Granola is a combination of grains (particularly oats), treatment nuts, seek dried seeds and fruits seasoned with spices. It makes a terrific breakfast cereal with yogurt or milk. Take some along for a quick pick-me-up snack. Homemade granola is not like the hard clusters found in cereal boxes on the grocery store shelves. Although mixed with a medium it can be made into a portable snack bar or nuggets. I love Jen’s recipe the best for cereal because it is light with a pleasant hint of vanilla. It is not overly sweetened either. The only place I could find unsweetened coconut and real coconut flavoring was at the health food store such as Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods.

Jen’s Notes:
“This recipe can also be cooked on Low in a crockpot. It’ll take a couple of hours – stir frequently for even browning. I suppose you could make a half batch, but since it stays good a while and we eat it for breakfast and snacks, I prefer to make a whole recipe.”

Source: Jennifer West
1/2 cup Honey
1 cup Oil
2 teaspoon Vanilla
2 teaspoon Coconut Flavoring
1 cup Dry Milk
3 cups Unsweetened Dried Coconut
7 cups Oats
1/4 cup brown sugar or 1/2 teaspoon Stevia

Combine the liquid ingredients (I use a glass measuring cup because it’s easier to pour into the dry ingredients in the next step) and heat in the microwave for a minute or so while you combine the remaining ingredients.

Stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed. Stir the liquid ingredients in the measuring cup to combine. Slowly pour the liquid ingredients into the oat and coconut mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until liquid ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide granola between two 13 x 9 baking pans. Smooth out tops for even browning. Bake at 325 for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir to ensure even browning. (I use a spatula to lift and turn the mixture onto itself, working around the outside of the pan, then lifting and turning the cereal in the center.) Redistribute evenly in the pans, smooth the tops and return to the oven. Bake 10 more minutes, and stir again. Bake another 5 minutes and stir. Bake another 5 minutes, if necessary – you want a nice golden brown, but not too dark. After removing from the oven, stir a final time (or the cereal that’s in contact with the pan will get too brown). Makes about 1 gallon.

Variations:
-Add 1/2 cup each type of chopped nuts if adding more than one: walnuts, almonds, pecans or whole pine nuts. Reduce oil to 3/4 cups.
– 1/2 cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
-Add 1/2 cup dried fruit such as raisins, cherries, blueberries, dates or cranberries. Dried fruit such as apricots will need to be chopped first.
-2 tablespoons wheat germ or flax meal.
-1 tablespoon cinnamon.
-1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
Jen’s Private Reserve Granola

This recipe can also be cooked on Low in a crockpot. It’ll take a couple of hours – stir frequently for even browning. I suppose you could make a half batch, information pills but since it stays good awhile and we eat it for breakfast and snacks, information pills I prefer to make a whole recipe.

½ cup Honey 7 cups Oats
1 cup Oil 3 cups Unsweetened Dried Coconut
2 tsp Vanilla 1 cup Dry Milk
2 tsp Coconut Flavoring ¼ cup Splenda

Combine the liquid ingredients (I use a glass measuring cup because it’s easier to pour into the dry ingredients in the next step) and heat in the microwave for a minute or so while you combine the remaining ingredients.

Stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed. Stir the liquid ingredients in the measuring cup to combine. Slowly pour the liquid ingredients into the oat and coconut mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until liquid ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide granola between two 13 x 9 baking pans. Smooth out tops for even browning. Bake at 325 for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir to ensure even browning. (I use a spatula to lift and turn the mixture onto itself, working around the outside of the pan, then lifting and turning the cereal in the center.) Redistribute evenly in the pans, smooth the tops and return to the oven. Bake 10 more minutes, and stir again. Bake another 5 minutes and stir. Bake another 5 minutes, if necessary – you want a nice golden brown, but not too dark. After removing from the oven, stir a final time (or the cereal that’s in contact with the pan will get too brown). Makes about 1 gallon.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, rx I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, approved called a standing rib roast, advice or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, medications I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, viagra approved called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, this optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, sildenafil salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, nurse place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, medical optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, price salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, healing place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating for me at time. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, abortion you must first understand your cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, cost Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are stil considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

Standard and Commercial grades are sold as ungraded or “store brand” meat.

When the meat appears darker, and the fat takes on an oily more yellowish appearance, it is a good indication that it is well below Choice grade.ot Safeway or Albertson’s anymore because they are pushing their own brandings of Rancher’s Reserve and Blue Ribbon
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:

so you probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” or “standing rib roast.” A boneless rib roast may be called “eye of the rib” roast–or if the ribs are still attached, a “standing rib” roast. The meat will be more flavorful if you roast it with the ribs still attached, but a boneless roast is definitely easier to carve.
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making the steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib: The blessed king of all cuts often to referred to as a 7 bone roast or rib-eye. The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

The rib is
Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

TRib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.
Granola is a combination of grains (particularly oats), treatment nuts, seek dried seeds and fruits seasoned with spices. It makes a terrific breakfast cereal with yogurt or milk. Take some along for a quick pick-me-up snack. Homemade granola is not like the hard clusters found in cereal boxes on the grocery store shelves. Although mixed with a medium it can be made into a portable snack bar or nuggets. I love Jen’s recipe the best for cereal because it is light with a pleasant hint of vanilla. It is not overly sweetened either. The only place I could find unsweetened coconut and real coconut flavoring was at the health food store such as Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods.

Jen’s Notes:
“This recipe can also be cooked on Low in a crockpot. It’ll take a couple of hours – stir frequently for even browning. I suppose you could make a half batch, but since it stays good a while and we eat it for breakfast and snacks, I prefer to make a whole recipe.”

Source: Jennifer West
1/2 cup Honey
1 cup Oil
2 teaspoon Vanilla
2 teaspoon Coconut Flavoring
1 cup Dry Milk
3 cups Unsweetened Dried Coconut
7 cups Oats
1/4 cup brown sugar or 1/2 teaspoon Stevia

Combine the liquid ingredients (I use a glass measuring cup because it’s easier to pour into the dry ingredients in the next step) and heat in the microwave for a minute or so while you combine the remaining ingredients.

Stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed. Stir the liquid ingredients in the measuring cup to combine. Slowly pour the liquid ingredients into the oat and coconut mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until liquid ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide granola between two 13 x 9 baking pans. Smooth out tops for even browning. Bake at 325 for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir to ensure even browning. (I use a spatula to lift and turn the mixture onto itself, working around the outside of the pan, then lifting and turning the cereal in the center.) Redistribute evenly in the pans, smooth the tops and return to the oven. Bake 10 more minutes, and stir again. Bake another 5 minutes and stir. Bake another 5 minutes, if necessary – you want a nice golden brown, but not too dark. After removing from the oven, stir a final time (or the cereal that’s in contact with the pan will get too brown). Makes about 1 gallon.

Variations:
-Add 1/2 cup each type of chopped nuts if adding more than one: walnuts, almonds, pecans or whole pine nuts. Reduce oil to 3/4 cups.
– 1/2 cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
-Add 1/2 cup dried fruit such as raisins, cherries, blueberries, dates or cranberries. Dried fruit such as apricots will need to be chopped first.
-2 tablespoons wheat germ or flax meal.
-1 tablespoon cinnamon.
-1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
Jen’s Private Reserve Granola

This recipe can also be cooked on Low in a crockpot. It’ll take a couple of hours – stir frequently for even browning. I suppose you could make a half batch, information pills but since it stays good awhile and we eat it for breakfast and snacks, information pills I prefer to make a whole recipe.

½ cup Honey 7 cups Oats
1 cup Oil 3 cups Unsweetened Dried Coconut
2 tsp Vanilla 1 cup Dry Milk
2 tsp Coconut Flavoring ¼ cup Splenda

Combine the liquid ingredients (I use a glass measuring cup because it’s easier to pour into the dry ingredients in the next step) and heat in the microwave for a minute or so while you combine the remaining ingredients.

Stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed. Stir the liquid ingredients in the measuring cup to combine. Slowly pour the liquid ingredients into the oat and coconut mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until liquid ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide granola between two 13 x 9 baking pans. Smooth out tops for even browning. Bake at 325 for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir to ensure even browning. (I use a spatula to lift and turn the mixture onto itself, working around the outside of the pan, then lifting and turning the cereal in the center.) Redistribute evenly in the pans, smooth the tops and return to the oven. Bake 10 more minutes, and stir again. Bake another 5 minutes and stir. Bake another 5 minutes, if necessary – you want a nice golden brown, but not too dark. After removing from the oven, stir a final time (or the cereal that’s in contact with the pan will get too brown). Makes about 1 gallon.

Back when I was in college a friend of mine and I celebrated the news of her pregnancy over a plate of pork and rice. Her recipe began with a box of chicken falvored Rice-a-Roni and 2 pork chops. She cooked the rice according to the directions, sildenafil sauteing the grain with a little butter. She then added the chops after she stirred in the water. Cover and in 30 minutes we had a delicious simple meal.

Occasionally when I see a box of Rice-a-Roni on sale I’ll pick one up to save for those busy nights when I do not have a lot of time to cook. If I do have time to spend chopping and sauteing vegetables I use this flavorful rice recipe. I like to roast a chicken in the crock pot throughout the day. Then when I am ready to make the rice I will add both of the legs with the water. The extra cooking time does not dry out the dark meat and the added chicken helps to give the rice that flavorful hint of chicken. You can also use raw chicken breasts.

2 celery stalks, drug diced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and diced (optional)
7 small white mushrooms, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 tbsp unsalted butter
Salt & Pepper- to taste
1 bullion cube or 1 tsp condensed chicken base
1 cup long grain rice
2 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp dried parsley

Melt the butter in a large skillet with a lid over medium-high heat. Add the vegetables: onions, carrots, celery, garlic and mushrooms. Saute until onions are transparent and the celery is tender, about 8 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper. Add the rice and cook until rice turns white. Cook 3 minutes longer. Slowly pour in the chicken stock stirring the rice mixture at the same time. Add the parsley. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes or until rice is tender.

*Add chicken if using with the broth.

Navigating the Meat Case

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.

Yum, more about yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son could eat them for breakfast, web lunch and dinner. He is a picky eater. Occasionally he will surprise me like the time he ate hummus with carrots. He did not start out picky. In fact, treatment when he started solids the more gourmet the better. Pancakes is one area I have made gradual changes. I swapped out the all-purpose flour for oat flour, added wheat germ and ground flax seed and omitted the sugar. I feel better knowing he is getting some nutrition. He ate these banana pancakes without a single peep. Be sure to visit Simple Bites to read the post for Banana Oatmeal Pancakes. You will find a few more suggestions to placate a picky eater.

The addition of ground oatmeal flour gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. Be sure to puree the banana it helps it blend in nicely with the other liquids. I was worried about the strong flavor of the honey but you cannot even taste it.

Source: Simple Bites
makes about 20 pancakes
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoon ground flax seed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups low-fat milk, room temperature
1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt, room temperature
3 tablespoons melted butter or canola oil
1/3 cup honey
1 1/3 cup puréed ripe bananas, about 4 medium bananas
2 eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature

Preheat a large skillet over low heat.

Add the oats to a food processor and process until very fine. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, ground oats, flax seed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

In a separate medium-sized bowl, combine the milk, yogurt, cooled butter or canola oil, honey, banana, and eggs. Hand whisk until thoroughly combined, but do not beat.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the liquids into the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated. Do not beat the mixture. Just stir until moist and combined.

Turn the heat on the pan or griddle up to medium-low. Grease with cooking spray, oil, or butter according to your preference. Add the batter 1/4 cup per pancake to the pan. Cook until golden brown on the bottom before flipping.

You can usually tell it is ready to flip because the top will start to bubble. Pancakes can be kept warm in a 150 degree oven on an oven-safe plate or cookie sheet while the remaining cook. Serve with sliced banana, your favorite jam, honey, or syrup.

To freeze leftovers: Cool on a cookie cooling rack completely. Then, place pancakes in gallon-sized zip top bags. To reheat, warm in a toaster oven or microwave.

Variations:
– Swap oats for instant oatmeal and process as directed. Or use oat flour, no need to process.
– Use sour cream in the place of yogurt.
– Replace the wheat flour with all-purpose or gluten free mix.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.
– Swap the banana puree with pumpkin puree, sweet potatoes or applesauce.

Recipe for a simple version of Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.

Yum, more about yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son could eat them for breakfast, web lunch and dinner. He is a picky eater. Occasionally he will surprise me like the time he ate hummus with carrots. He did not start out picky. In fact, treatment when he started solids the more gourmet the better. Pancakes is one area I have made gradual changes. I swapped out the all-purpose flour for oat flour, added wheat germ and ground flax seed and omitted the sugar. I feel better knowing he is getting some nutrition. He ate these banana pancakes without a single peep. Be sure to visit Simple Bites to read the post for Banana Oatmeal Pancakes. You will find a few more suggestions to placate a picky eater.

The addition of ground oatmeal flour gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. Be sure to puree the banana it helps it blend in nicely with the other liquids. I was worried about the strong flavor of the honey but you cannot even taste it.

Source: Simple Bites
makes about 20 pancakes
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoon ground flax seed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups low-fat milk, room temperature
1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt, room temperature
3 tablespoons melted butter or canola oil
1/3 cup honey
1 1/3 cup puréed ripe bananas, about 4 medium bananas
2 eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature

Preheat a large skillet over low heat.

Add the oats to a food processor and process until very fine. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, ground oats, flax seed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

In a separate medium-sized bowl, combine the milk, yogurt, cooled butter or canola oil, honey, banana, and eggs. Hand whisk until thoroughly combined, but do not beat.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the liquids into the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated. Do not beat the mixture. Just stir until moist and combined.

Turn the heat on the pan or griddle up to medium-low. Grease with cooking spray, oil, or butter according to your preference. Add the batter 1/4 cup per pancake to the pan. Cook until golden brown on the bottom before flipping.

You can usually tell it is ready to flip because the top will start to bubble. Pancakes can be kept warm in a 150 degree oven on an oven-safe plate or cookie sheet while the remaining cook. Serve with sliced banana, your favorite jam, honey, or syrup.

To freeze leftovers: Cool on a cookie cooling rack completely. Then, place pancakes in gallon-sized zip top bags. To reheat, warm in a toaster oven or microwave.

Variations:
– Swap oats for instant oatmeal and process as directed. Or use oat flour, no need to process.
– Use sour cream in the place of yogurt.
– Replace the wheat flour with all-purpose or gluten free mix.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.
– Swap the banana puree with pumpkin puree, sweet potatoes or applesauce.

Recipe for a simple version of Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes.

Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, view tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, drugs mace, viagra order pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English. There are as many versions of Shepherds or Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is a mixture of beef with gravy and loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/swedish_meatballs-print/

Serves 10-12 (about 40-50 meatballs)
Meatballs:
4 tbsp butter, site divided
1 large yellow onion, finely diced (or grated on a cheese grater)
1 cup milk
2 1/2 to 3 cups bread crumbs (or 4-5 slices of bread processed in a food processor)
1 1/4 pound ground pork
2 pounds ground beef (buy the package that says market fresh or fresh)
2 eggs
1 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt

Sauce:
6 Tbsp butter
1/3 cup flour
1 quart beef stock

In a large skillet, sauté onion in 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat until soften and translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Remove pan from heat and let cool.

Pour milk into the mixing bowl of an electric mixer. Add bread crumbs and let sit; about 2 to 5 minutes or until the milk is completely soaked up.

Add the ground pork, ground beef, cooled onions (reserving the pan to cook in), eggs, nutmeg, cardamom, salt and pepper. until the ingredients are well combined.

Use a cookie scoop to measure out tablespoon sized balls. Using your hands roll into meatballs. Set meatballs on a baking sheet.

In the same pan used to cook the onions, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium to medium high heat. When the butter has melted add the meatballs in batches, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Brown meatballs on all sides about 40 seconds to 1 minute each side until nice and browned. Scoop out and place on a baking rack placed in a baking sheet. (This helps to drain the excess fat)

Sauce:
In the same pan over medium heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter for the sauce. When the butter has melted slowly add the flour, mixing continuously with a wire whisk until smooth. Cook about 1 minute longer to brown. Continue to whisk while adding the broth in a steady stream. Whisk sauce until it is completely smooth and void of any lumps. Bring to a boil then turn the heat to low; simmer about 5 minutes more to thicken.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

To serve, remove the meatballs from the sauce and place in a serving bowl. If desired add the sour cream mixing well. Serve with Lingonberry Jelly, boiled potatoes and steamed green beans.

Variations:
— Mix a couple tablespoons lingonberry, cranberry, red currant or raspberry jelly, into the sauce before serving.
–Mix 1/2 to 3/4 cup sour cream with the meatballs in the serving bowl.
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/swedish_meatballs-print/

Serves 10-12 (about 40-50 meatballs)
Meatballs:
4 tbsp butter, site divided
1 large yellow onion, finely diced (or grated on a cheese grater)
1 cup milk
2 1/2 to 3 cups bread crumbs (or 4-5 slices of bread processed in a food processor)
1 1/4 pound ground pork
2 pounds ground beef (buy the package that says market fresh or fresh)
2 eggs
1 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt

Sauce:
6 Tbsp butter
1/3 cup flour
1 quart beef stock

In a large skillet, sauté onion in 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat until soften and translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Remove pan from heat and let cool.

Pour milk into the mixing bowl of an electric mixer. Add bread crumbs and let sit; about 2 to 5 minutes or until the milk is completely soaked up.

Add the ground pork, ground beef, cooled onions (reserving the pan to cook in), eggs, nutmeg, cardamom, salt and pepper. until the ingredients are well combined.

Use a cookie scoop to measure out tablespoon sized balls. Using your hands roll into meatballs. Set meatballs on a baking sheet.

In the same pan used to cook the onions, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium to medium high heat. When the butter has melted add the meatballs in batches, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Brown meatballs on all sides about 40 seconds to 1 minute each side until nice and browned. Scoop out and place on a baking rack placed in a baking sheet. (This helps to drain the excess fat)

Sauce:
In the same pan over medium heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter for the sauce. When the butter has melted slowly add the flour, mixing continuously with a wire whisk until smooth. Cook about 1 minute longer to brown. Continue to whisk while adding the broth in a steady stream. Whisk sauce until it is completely smooth and void of any lumps. Bring to a boil then turn the heat to low; simmer about 5 minutes more to thicken.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

To serve, remove the meatballs from the sauce and place in a serving bowl. If desired add the sour cream mixing well. Serve with Lingonberry Jelly, boiled potatoes and steamed green beans.

Variations:
— Mix a couple tablespoons lingonberry, cranberry, red currant or raspberry jelly, into the sauce before serving.
–Mix 1/2 to 3/4 cup sour cream with the meatballs in the serving bowl.
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, find tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, more about mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English. There are as many versions of Shepherds or Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is a mixture of beef with gravy and loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, cialis 40mg optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Fast alternati
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, cialis 40mg optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Fast alternati
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, more about optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, viagra 60mg salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, dosage place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, erectile there I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, link called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, erectile there I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, link called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, sales minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme
Directions

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, doctor mix together the garlic, visit this site olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 145 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, erectile there I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, link called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.
Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, sales minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme
Directions

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, doctor mix together the garlic, visit this site olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 145 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices.

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, this you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, price Choice, information pills and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

“Choice” graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

“Select” is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:
The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:
The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip. Sirloin steaks and ground sirloin are leaner making them a better pick if you are watching your fat.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

Double Chocolate Brownies

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, clinic you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:

The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, clinic you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:

The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, buy more about you must first understand your cuts of meat.
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, view known in butchery terms as the chuck. Although flavorful, mind the often-used shoulder muscle is mostly tough and full of connective tissue. The meat from this section of a cow is less expensive and primarily used for slow-cooked roasts. However, if you’re looking for a bargain, a top blade steak, also called a flatiron, is a flavorful, fairly tender chuck steak to throw on the grill.

Next in the line-up, anatomically speaking, are the portions of a cow that butchers call the rib, short loin and sirloin. The meat from this top, middle area of the cow is the most tender, since the muscles move the least during a cow’s life (as compared to the shoulder, hind end and shank). From these three larger cuts come most of the steaks you see at the market.

RIB STEAK:
These steaks are basically a prime rib roast cut into smaller pieces. A rib steak has the bone attached, but the more popular rib eye steak has had the bone removed.

The rib eye is also sold as a Spencer steak (in the West) and Delmonico steak (on the East coast). Rib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, clinic you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:

The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, buy more about you must first understand your cuts of meat.
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, view known in butchery terms as the chuck. Although flavorful, mind the often-used shoulder muscle is mostly tough and full of connective tissue. The meat from this section of a cow is less expensive and primarily used for slow-cooked roasts. However, if you’re looking for a bargain, a top blade steak, also called a flatiron, is a flavorful, fairly tender chuck steak to throw on the grill.

Next in the line-up, anatomically speaking, are the portions of a cow that butchers call the rib, short loin and sirloin. The meat from this top, middle area of the cow is the most tender, since the muscles move the least during a cow’s life (as compared to the shoulder, hind end and shank). From these three larger cuts come most of the steaks you see at the market.

RIB STEAK:
These steaks are basically a prime rib roast cut into smaller pieces. A rib steak has the bone attached, but the more popular rib eye steak has had the bone removed.

The rib eye is also sold as a Spencer steak (in the West) and Delmonico steak (on the East coast). Rib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

Ce

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, order minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, see mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 145 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices.

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, clinic you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:

The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, buy more about you must first understand your cuts of meat.
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, view known in butchery terms as the chuck. Although flavorful, mind the often-used shoulder muscle is mostly tough and full of connective tissue. The meat from this section of a cow is less expensive and primarily used for slow-cooked roasts. However, if you’re looking for a bargain, a top blade steak, also called a flatiron, is a flavorful, fairly tender chuck steak to throw on the grill.

Next in the line-up, anatomically speaking, are the portions of a cow that butchers call the rib, short loin and sirloin. The meat from this top, middle area of the cow is the most tender, since the muscles move the least during a cow’s life (as compared to the shoulder, hind end and shank). From these three larger cuts come most of the steaks you see at the market.

RIB STEAK:
These steaks are basically a prime rib roast cut into smaller pieces. A rib steak has the bone attached, but the more popular rib eye steak has had the bone removed.

The rib eye is also sold as a Spencer steak (in the West) and Delmonico steak (on the East coast). Rib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

Ce

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, order minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, see mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 145 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices.

The first winter Olympics took place on this day in 1924 in Chamonix, illness France. The olympics used to be a major highlight when I was a child. I loved watching the daring athletes perform amazing feats to compete for the gold. What an exhilarating feeling to know you are among the most gifted athletes in the whole world.

To help cultivate a love of the Olympic games and bring the excitement close to home hold a family or neighborhood olympic event. Ask each family member to suggest their favorite winter olympic event. If you are like us and not do not live within easy access of the snow work as a team to come up with creative ways to meet the needs for each event. When I lived up north my friends and I would gather garbage can lids, click shovels and trash bags to slide down icy hills. Plastic tied over shoes coupled with wet grass becomes an ice skating rink. Brooms and a birdie or puck are all you need for street hockey.

You will need:
A musical anthem and flag for each team and an official olympic banner.
A stop watch
Medals
Any materials needed for each event

Make medals using wood circles from the craft store. Drill a hole at the top. Spray paint gold, page silver or bronze. Then slip a ribbon through the hole and tie a knot.

Begin with a celebratory march. Have each team or family member carry their flag during the opening ceremony. Afterward celebrate each others victories with a warm mug of hot chocolate.

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop or supermarket, clinic you must first understand the different cuts of meat.

There are three top grades of beef to consider when choosing a steak or roast. Prime, Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice but a much lower price.

You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select grade cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness. So how do you know the Choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Unlike the vibrant white ribbons of fat in Prime and Choice meats Select or commercial grade (or lower grade) meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:


1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known as Chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Brisket:

The Brisket is located below the Chuck. This is a very course meat as it surrounds the sternum. Ideally Brisket should be smoked slowly to soften the stringy fibers. Corned beef is brisket that has been cured in a salt brine.

3. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib:

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars. You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.”

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

Short Loin Steak:
Without the extra ripples of fat the short loin steak is less tender than a rib eye.

The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has a little of both the short loin and the tenderloin. The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak:
The sirloin comprised of the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are large and thin. The most well-known is the tri-tip.

Flank Steak: Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut. Flank steaks are offen used when making Fajitas. Cook them very quickly to medium-rare and slice thinly against the grain.

*Photos curtesy of The Meat Man, Delicious Magazine, Snider Bros, Western Beef and Seafood, Kobe Beef Store, Tony’s Market and Wiki Commons,

To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, buy more about you must first understand your cuts of meat.
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, view known in butchery terms as the chuck. Although flavorful, mind the often-used shoulder muscle is mostly tough and full of connective tissue. The meat from this section of a cow is less expensive and primarily used for slow-cooked roasts. However, if you’re looking for a bargain, a top blade steak, also called a flatiron, is a flavorful, fairly tender chuck steak to throw on the grill.

Next in the line-up, anatomically speaking, are the portions of a cow that butchers call the rib, short loin and sirloin. The meat from this top, middle area of the cow is the most tender, since the muscles move the least during a cow’s life (as compared to the shoulder, hind end and shank). From these three larger cuts come most of the steaks you see at the market.

RIB STEAK:
These steaks are basically a prime rib roast cut into smaller pieces. A rib steak has the bone attached, but the more popular rib eye steak has had the bone removed.

The rib eye is also sold as a Spencer steak (in the West) and Delmonico steak (on the East coast). Rib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

Ce

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, order minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, see mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 145 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices.

The first winter Olympics took place on this day in 1924 in Chamonix, illness France. The olympics used to be a major highlight when I was a child. I loved watching the daring athletes perform amazing feats to compete for the gold. What an exhilarating feeling to know you are among the most gifted athletes in the whole world.

To help cultivate a love of the Olympic games and bring the excitement close to home hold a family or neighborhood olympic event. Ask each family member to suggest their favorite winter olympic event. If you are like us and not do not live within easy access of the snow work as a team to come up with creative ways to meet the needs for each event. When I lived up north my friends and I would gather garbage can lids, click shovels and trash bags to slide down icy hills. Plastic tied over shoes coupled with wet grass becomes an ice skating rink. Brooms and a birdie or puck are all you need for street hockey.

You will need:
A musical anthem and flag for each team and an official olympic banner.
A stop watch
Medals
Any materials needed for each event

Make medals using wood circles from the craft store. Drill a hole at the top. Spray paint gold, page silver or bronze. Then slip a ribbon through the hole and tie a knot.

Begin with a celebratory march. Have each team or family member carry their flag during the opening ceremony. Afterward celebrate each others victories with a warm mug of hot chocolate.
To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, ampoule you must first understand your cuts of meat.
The top three grades of beef are Prime, Choice, and Select.Meats graded “Prime” are sold almost exclusively to restaurants, so you probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” or “standing rib roast.” A boneless rib roast may be called “eye of the rib” roast–or if the ribs are still attached, a “standing rib” roast. The meat will be more flavorful if you roast it with the ribs still attached, but a boneless roast is definitely easier to carve.
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making the steaks juicy and full of flavor.

Prime Rib: The blessed king of all cuts often to referred to as a 7 bone roast or rib-eye. The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

The rib is
Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

TRib steaks usually have large pockets of fat, which add flavor and give the steak a moist, juicy texture.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
Some people find a long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak to be less tender than a rib eye and miss the extra ripples of fat. Others think a top loin steak has just the right balance of flavor and tenderness, without being too fatty. When it has a bone, a top loin steak is known as a shell steak. When the bone is removed it goes by many names: a strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak, (which, confusingly, comes from the short loin, not the sirloin) are all the same cut of steak.

Also cut from the short loin portion of a cow is the tenderloin, a portion of meat considered to be extremely tender (hence the name). Tenderloins are easy to recognize in the meat case, due to a long, cylindrical shape that’s thicker on one end then tapers down. A tenderloin is cut into many different types of steak, and all are pretty pricey. The thickest part (usually about 3 inches thick) of the tenderloin is cut into a steak known as chateaubriand. Filet mignon (also known as tenderloin steak) is cut from the meat behind the chateaubriand and is slightly less thick. Filet Mignon is thought to be the most tender part of the tenderloin, but on the downside, the flavor can be pretty mild.

Last but not least, the short loin gives us the t-bone, a steak named for, you guessed it, a “T” shaped bone that runs down the middle. On one side of the bone is meat from the top loin, and on the other is a thin strip of tenderloin. Some say this steak combines the best of both worlds: the tenderness of a tenderloin steak and the rich, “meaty” flavor of a top loin steak. If you’re really hungry or feeling particularly manly, skip the T-bone and go straight for the porterhouse, which is simply a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, here sickness you must first understand the different cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, sickness and Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

So how do you know the choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Select or commercial grade meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.” The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. The loin steak is less tender than a rib eye without the extra ripples of fat. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.
The first time I walked into a butcher shop I felt completely out of my element. Navigating the meat case was and can still be intimidating at times. To understand the meat case at a butcher shop, here sickness you must first understand the different cuts of meat. In this tutorial we will focus on the standard cuts of beef.

The top three grades of beef are Prime, sickness and Choice, and Select. The grades are based on the age of the cattle and the degree of marbling of fat.

“Prime” graded meats are the most expensive cuts. You will not find prime graded beef in the grocery store as they are almost exclusively sold to restaurants and hotels. Prime cuts are produced from young well fed cattle. The greater the marbling of fat the more flavorful, tender and juicy the cut of meat.

Choice graded meats has less marbling but are still considered tender, juicy and flavorful as long as they are not over cooked.

Select is the third common grade of meat. It is leaner than the prime and choice with significantly less marbling. The lack of fat means less juice and lower price. You can save money by purchasing a USDA Select graded cut and marinating before cooking to obtain the maximum flavor and tenderness.

So how do you know the choice meat in the supermarket is really what the label says? Select or commercial grade meats appear darker and the fat has an oily or more yellowish appearance.

The various cuts of beef:
1. Chuck:
The first cut of meat behind the head is the shoulder, known in butchery terms as chuck. This section of the cow although flavorful is fairly tough and fatty requiring a slow cooking method (preferably in a liquid) to break down the fibers. Chuck steaks and roasts (chuck blade, chuck fillet, under blade, top blade and roasts) are the least expensive cuts of meat and well worth the price if cooked properly. For blade steaks be sure to marinade or braise well overnight before grilling. Cook stew meat and roasts slowly in liquid.

2. Rib, short loin and sirloin:
You probably won’t find “prime rib” at the grocery store. Instead, look for roasts labeled “rib roast,” “eye of the rib roast” (a boneless roast) or if the ribs are attached a “standing rib roast.” The meat from the middle area of the cow is tender and well marbled with large pockets of fat making steaks juicy and full of flavor.

The prime rib-eye roast is by far the most expensive. Be prepared to shell out some serious cash in the neighborhood of $70 plus dollars

Rib Steak: a prime rib cut into individual steaks. The rib steak has the bone attached while the rib eye steak the bone is removed.

SHORT LOIN STEAK:
The Strip Steak: A long, narrow and slightly triangular top loin steak. The loin steak is less tender than a rib eye without the extra ripples of fat. With the bone removed it goes by many names: strip steak, Kansas City strip, New York strip and sirloin strip steak,

The Tenderloin: Tenderloin steaks are tender but pricey and the flavor is pretty mild. The thickest part of the tenderloin is known as chateaubriand. The meat behind the chateaubriand is the popular Filet mignon.

T-bone Steak: The last steak cut from the tenderloin is known for the t-shape bone that runs down the middle. The T-bone has The porterhouse is a t-bone steak with a bigger portion of tenderloin attached.

Sirloin Steak
The sirloin is basically the cow’s hip. Sirloin steaks are usually fairly large but thin, and the meat is both moderately flavorful and moderately tender. Steaks from this region of a cow tend to be a good value. The most well-known among them are the top sirloin steak and the tri-tip, both boneless. Lesser-known steaks cut from the sirloin are the pin-bone, flat-bone, round-bone and wedge-bone steaks.

Directly below the loin and sirloin, on the underside of the cow’s belly, is the flank. Flank steak is a thin, wide, boneless cut with a texture (grain) that looks very stringy. Cooked very quickly to medium-rare and sliced thinly against the grain, the chewy texture is less noticeable and you will be rewarded with rich flavor.

SEASONING THE MEAT:
f a high-quality cut of meat is cooked correctly, you really don’t need much more than salt and pepper. Which makes one think that seasoning a steak is a very short topic, until of course, you consider the hotly debated “salt early” and “salt late” theories.

The Salt Early Theory: Salting meat many hours or even days before cooking breaks down the protein in meat and makes it more tender. Initially, the salt draws out moisture, but over time the meat re-absorbs the moisture, which is now flavored with salt and therefore adds more succulent flavor to the meat.

The Salt Late Theory: Salt dries meat out. Period. Don’t add it until immediately before cooking.

In this debate, we take the middle road. In our experience, the salt early theory rings true with larger or tougher cuts of beef. For your average steak, salting about a half-hour before cooking is ideal and seasoning right before cooking works just fine, too.

Before seasoning, always make sure to pat the steak dry. Some people like to brush the steak with oil (avoid olive oil, which can become bitter at high heats) or a combination of melted butter and oil before seasoning to help the outside of the steak brown. Season both sides of the steak, using a teaspoon or less of both salt and pepper. Remember, you can always add more seasoning after the steak cooks, but you can’t un-salt the meat.

After seasoning, let the meat sit on the counter for a bit so it comes up to room temperature (a good rule of thumb is at least 10 minutes for every inch of thickness).

If you want to branch out from salt and pepper, marinades and rubs can be used on any type of steak, but are an especially great way to bring flavor to less-expensive cuts.

Cooking Methods

What we love about cooking steak on the stove is how easy it is to get a crisp, caramelized coating on the outside of the steak without over-cooking the middle. More often than not, this is harder to achieve on a grill. Using a combination of the stove-top and the oven is a tried and true method for perfect steak. The question is, which comes first?
The most common method is searing the steak first on the stove, then finishing it in a hot oven.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Pre-heat the oven to 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven is up to temp, drizzle a little oil in an oven-proof pan (cast iron works great) and then heat the pan on the stove over high heat for several minutes until it just barely starts to smoke (you can give the pan a head start by putting it in the oven while it preheats).
Drop the steak in the pan and let it sit without touching it for 3 minutes. Be prepared to turn on your fan or open some windows, as there will be smoke.
If the steak is stuck to the pan, it’s not done browning yet and needs a little more time. If it comes up relatively easily after 3 minutes, flip the steak.
Put the pan, with the steak in it, in the oven.
Let it bake for several minutes, then check by temperature or texture for doneness.
A small but vocal population of steak lovers swears by the “reverse sear” technique. The theory behind this method is that cooking the steak in the oven first will dry the outside of the steak while slowly cooking the inside and keeping it tender. If the outside of the steak is dry, it will then sear faster and more efficiently in a hot pan.

Pat dry and season the steak.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place a wire cooling rack on a cookie sheet then put the steak on the cooling rack. This allows hot air to circulate around the entire steak.
Bake the steak until the internal temperature is 100-110 degrees.
Drizzle a little oil in a pan over high heat. Just as the pan begins to smoke, drop the steak in the pan.
Cook the steak for 2 minutes on each side.
So does this method really yield a more perfect steak? We have to admit, it did brown the outside of the steak very nicely while leaving the inside really juicy and tender. As a bonus, you get nice grill marks from baking the meat on the cooling rack. Give it a try, and you be the judge.

In some people’s minds, however, the only way to cook a steak is over an open flame in the great outdoors. Many of these same people consider grilling an art form that cannot be mastered overnight. It takes years of experimenting with different types of grills, different heat levels and cooking times and various seasonings and marinades. This may be true for some fanatics out there, but we feel pretty confident that you’ll get a great steak the first time out if you pay attention to a few key things.

The “charcoal vs gas” debate is one that has gone for decades, and we think they both have their place. For convenience and the easy ability to control heat levels, a gas grill can’t be beat. For depth of flavor, charcoal usually wins out.

Either way, you never want to put a steak on a cold grill. Wait until it heats up. For a gas grill, this is easy. Simply turn the knob to medium-high and keep the lid closed for 10-15 minutes. For a charcoal grill, the type of charcoal you use will affect the heat level as well as the flavor of the meat. Briquettes are easy to light, hold steady heat and are inexpensive, but they are also made with questionable additives that can give meat a chemical flavor. We favor hardwood charcoal (made from oak, hickory, mesquite, etc) for a natural, smoky flavor. Hardwood charcoal can be a little trickier to light and once it gets going it burns hotter and more unpredictably, which requires keeping a closer eye on the grill. A small price to pay, we think.

There is no point in using hardwood charcoal and then dousing it in lighter fluid, which will make your meat taste like it was marinated in petroleum. Instead, use a charcoal chimney starter to stack and light the coals. Once the coals are lit (usually about 30 coals are needed to provide adequate heat) wait until they change from bright red to an ashy white, which usually takes at least 20 minutes. Spread the coals out, placing most of them on one side to create a high heat side and a few on the other side of the grill to create a low heat side. Cover the grill for about five minutes so the heat builds to medium-high. To test the heat, simply hold your hand a few inches above the grill. If you can’t hold it there for more then 2 seconds, you’ve got high heat. If you can hold it there for 4-6 seconds without pulling away, the heat is medium-high.

Now, you’re ready to cook. Start by placing the steak (patted dry, seasoned and close to room temp.) over medium-high heat for at least 3 minutes without turning. This is about right for a 1-inch steak; thicker steaks will need another minute or two. Flip, and grill the other side for another 3 minutes. This should brown both sides and bring the steak to the brink of medium-rare.

To bring the steak up to desired doneness, move it to an area of the grill that has less-intense heat. Close the lid and cook for another 3-5 minutes before checking if it’s ready.

Although flames add excitement to grilling, they do nothing for the meat but burn it. Move the steak away from flare-ups as soon as they occur. In general, try to move the steak as little as possible while it cooks – too much movement prevents the steak from searing and getting a crispy, brown coating.

FINISHED
A thermometer is the most accurate way to gauge if steak is done to your liking. Although your thermometer will probably tell you that 145 degrees is rare for beef, any chef you ask will tell you differently. Rare in a chef’s mind, meaning very pink, is closer to 125 degrees; medium-rare is 125-130; medium, 130-135 degrees; medium-well, 135 to 140 degrees; and well, 140 and above. You can also give the steak a poke with your finger. Rare is squishy, medium-rare is spongy, and medium-well is taut. The steak will continue to cook at least five degrees when it’s off the grill or out of the pan, so err on the side of taking it away from heat earlier rather than later.

The final step, which should be included no matter how you cook your steak, is letting the meat rest before cutting into it. As the meat cools down the proteins begin to firm up and hold moisture, so when you cut into the steak all the juicy goodness won’t run out. About 8-10 minutes should do it, and a loose cover of foil or no cover at all is a much better choice than tightly sealing the meat up while it rests. If you’re like us, it takes at least 8-10 minutes to set the table and get everyone to sit down, so usually this step simply happens without having to think about it.

Hungry yet? Get over to your local butcher shop, grab a little salt and pepper, and give one of these cooking methods a try. In less time than it takes to drive to a restaurant, you’ll be sitting down at your kitchen table with a tender, sizzling hot, and dare we stay it, perfect steak on your plate.

This article was brought to you with one of the Challenge #1 (below) mini-challenges in mind. Commit to cooking your own food this month, and check back each Saturday for more Primal cooking tutorials.
Low Temp Cooking is that the process makes cheap but usually more flavorful cuts of tougher meats become texturally perfect and tender.

Valentine’s Day would not be the day of love without celebrating with some form of chocolate. For the ultimate chocolate Valentine’s Day dessert I highly recommend molten lave cakes. They may seem a little intimidating but are well worth the adventure.

It is true Moten Lava Cakes are my favorite Valentine’s Day dessert; they are not always practical to make. Brownies although simple can transform easily into an elegant ending to any couture Valentine’s Day fare. Top with sliced strawberries, medicine ice cream or cinnamon whipped cream. Slice one in half, sildenafil add a teaspoon of cherry pie filling then replace the top. Serve with ice cream or whipped topping and a drizzle of chocolate syrup. Use cookie cutters to make heart or circle shaped brownies. Replace this brownie batter in any recipe calling for boxed brownie mix.

Brownies are great for bake sales, prescription thank you’s, afternoon snacks and satisfy chocolate cravings like non other. This recipe is full of fudge chocolate flavor. I love using Raley’s brand semi-sweet chocolate chips. They have an intense dark chocolate flavor.

Source: Martha Stewart
Makes 9 large or 16 small squares
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for pan
6 ounces coarsely chopped good-quality semisweet chocolate
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a buttered 8-inch square baking pan with foil or parchment paper, allowing 2 inches to hang over sides. Butter lining (excluding overhang); set pan aside.

Put butter, chocolate, and cocoa in a heatproof medium bowl set over a pan of simmering water; stir until butter and chocolate are melted. Let cool slightly.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, pepper and salt in a separate bowl; set aside.

Put sugar, eggs, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat on medium speed until pale, about 4 minutes. Add chocolate mixture; beat until combined. Add flour mixture; beat, scraping down sides of bowl, until well incorporated.

Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth top with a rubber spatula. Bake until a cake tester inserted into brownies (avoid center and edges) comes out with a few crumbs but is not wet, about 35 minutes. Let cool slightly in pan, about 15 minutes. Lift out brownies; let cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into squares.

Garlic Prime Rib

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.

Yum, more about yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son could eat them for breakfast, web lunch and dinner. He is a picky eater. Occasionally he will surprise me like the time he ate hummus with carrots. He did not start out picky. In fact, treatment when he started solids the more gourmet the better. Pancakes is one area I have made gradual changes. I swapped out the all-purpose flour for oat flour, added wheat germ and ground flax seed and omitted the sugar. I feel better knowing he is getting some nutrition. He ate these banana pancakes without a single peep. Be sure to visit Simple Bites to read the post for Banana Oatmeal Pancakes. You will find a few more suggestions to placate a picky eater.

The addition of ground oatmeal flour gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. Be sure to puree the banana it helps it blend in nicely with the other liquids. I was worried about the strong flavor of the honey but you cannot even taste it.

Source: Simple Bites
makes about 20 pancakes
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoon ground flax seed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups low-fat milk, room temperature
1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt, room temperature
3 tablespoons melted butter or canola oil
1/3 cup honey
1 1/3 cup puréed ripe bananas, about 4 medium bananas
2 eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature

Preheat a large skillet over low heat.

Add the oats to a food processor and process until very fine. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, ground oats, flax seed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

In a separate medium-sized bowl, combine the milk, yogurt, cooled butter or canola oil, honey, banana, and eggs. Hand whisk until thoroughly combined, but do not beat.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the liquids into the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated. Do not beat the mixture. Just stir until moist and combined.

Turn the heat on the pan or griddle up to medium-low. Grease with cooking spray, oil, or butter according to your preference. Add the batter 1/4 cup per pancake to the pan. Cook until golden brown on the bottom before flipping.

You can usually tell it is ready to flip because the top will start to bubble. Pancakes can be kept warm in a 150 degree oven on an oven-safe plate or cookie sheet while the remaining cook. Serve with sliced banana, your favorite jam, honey, or syrup.

To freeze leftovers: Cool on a cookie cooling rack completely. Then, place pancakes in gallon-sized zip top bags. To reheat, warm in a toaster oven or microwave.

Variations:
– Swap oats for instant oatmeal and process as directed. Or use oat flour, no need to process.
– Use sour cream in the place of yogurt.
– Replace the wheat flour with all-purpose or gluten free mix.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.
– Swap the banana puree with pumpkin puree, sweet potatoes or applesauce.

Recipe for a simple version of Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes.
It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate large envelopes or boxes to hold their treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, shells, coins, trinkets, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of what is important to our children. Their likes and interests. They may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on.

This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, more about tickets to a memorable concert, hospital a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, sales tickets to a memorable concert, rx a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.

Photo and Art of decoupage box by: Haru

It is a brand new year with many amazing possibilities. The kids and I spent New Year’s weekend going through a box of my belongings from long ago that my mom sent to me for Christmas. The box was filled with old letters from another lifetime and volumes of classic literature. The kids were delighted by the colorful array of cards. The New Year Treasure Box is a fun way to hang on to all the treasures and maybe even a few nuggets of coal.

During the month of January gather the family together to decorate envelopes or small boxes to hold their personal treasures.

Treasures can be the recording or lyrics to a favorite song, erectile tickets to a memorable concert, a journal entry, pictures, art, trinkets from a vacation or outing, a dream, a wish…. anything that makes a memorable impression.

At the end of the year on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day during a scheduled family time give everyone the spotlight to share their favorite treasures. The New Year treasure box gives us, the parents, a clear view of our children’s interests by what they view as treasures. We may even find that what we thought was a treasure at the beginning of the year is of no interest later on. Pick a few of the most treasured pieces to reamin in the box. The rest may be disposed of or placed in a separate remembrance binder or box.

*This activity can also be done by hanging a string on the wall. Clip the treasures to the string.
A tradition of family handiwork has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of sewing to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish. In today’s society there is a plethora of resources available for instruction in every facet of handiwork.

The term crafts should not be limited to the stellar works on Etsy or the cute projects our preschoolers bring home from school. Crafts can be anything from constructing, ask knowing the details of a car and how to repair it, fixing electronics, to baking, art projects, woodworking, knitting, stamp collections, drawing or polishing gem stones. by definition a handiwork is “something that one has made or done.”

I am reminded of an old woman I met while in Texas. She had a passion for carving wood since she was a youth. In that era of time it was frowned upon for a girl to take up wood carving. Respectable or not my friend could not stop creating. She had an amazing talent for the craft yet she spent her life hiding that talent behind a closed door because she was taught that it was wrong. To this day in our modern society her creations lay hidden locked in a room. Her children were never taught the art from her master hands. They never learned to appreciate the gift their mother had.

Our hobbies are essential to our wellbeing as well as our kids for they give us a sense of accomplishment. They also provide a means to bring families together. Crafts passed down from generation to generation provide the roots that join us to our ancestors. In our family my Aunt taught my brothers to work with leather. My dad taught us the basics of carpentry and mechanics. My mom taught us crochet and candy making. My brother shared a few tips on drawing.

Learning new styles of handicrafts as a family help to expand our interests in addition to building memories and lasting bonds of friendship. Sitting down together as a family to make valentine’s generates conversation. We can laugh at jokes. We can tell stories. We may even start singing.

A scheduled family handicrafts time can be a once a week thing, once a month or just around major holidays. Decide as a family what you would like to work on. Sharing completed crafts with area hospitals or nursing homes is a great way to teach our family about serving others.

Examples of Handicrafts:
Flower arranging
Electronics and motor repair
Metal/iron works
Leather work
Gardening
Jewelry
Bead work
Sewing- blankets, clothing
Knitting/crochet
Spinning
Weaving
Embroidery
Cross Stitch
Quilting
Paper crafting
Origami
Scrap booking
Wood work- doll house furniture, cars, blocks, chess set
Stain Glass
Clay work
Painting
Drawing
Making cards
Making ornaments
Photography
Writing songs/stories/poems
Sand art
Puppets, dolls
Other craft style projects
A tradition of family crafts has a long history. In centuries past mothers passed on the art of handicrafts to their daughters. Fathers taught their sons to hunt and fish.

  • Don?t let your schedule overwhelm you. Schedule a Family Craft Night as often as time allows ? weekly, malady monthly, erectile or just before big holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Valentine?s Day and Halloween. And, consider other times beside evenings, such as Saturday morning or afternoon.
  • Ask your children for input, and to avoid frustration (yours and the child?s), be sure the project is age appropriate. Offer several options, and let the child choose which project you will make. Or, alternate project selection between children.

http://www.betterbudgeting.com/articles/parenting/homemadeartsupplies.htm

Living a Better Life
(featured column… from the editor’s desk)

20 Recipes for Homemade Art Supplies
by Michelle Jones

This article is for all the moms, dads, grandparents and childcare providers who are trying to stretch their dollars and still provide fun activities and supplies for the children.  Below you will find 20 recipes for homemade art supplies including play dough, modeling clay, paint, slime, goop, glitter, sidewalk chalk, papier-mâché (paper mache) and multi-colored crayons.

*  *  *

Homemade Art Supply List

Along with a good supply of crayons, markers, chalk and lots of paper, your children (or grandchildren) will also love playing with these homemade art supplies and games. You can purchase many of them at the store, but why not save some money and teach your child how to be even more creative by making their own supplies?

Children love seeing how things are made, and they love the time you will be spending with them while making these projects. If you don’t have kids at home, try making up a batch of something just for yourself, I won’t tell if you don’t!

I have been collecting these recipes for 13 years, many of them are scribbled on a scratch piece of paper. Enjoy!

Glitter

Mix together 5-6 drops of food coloring and 1/2 c. salt, stir well. Cook in microwave for 1-2 minutes or spread out on a piece of waxed paper to air-dry. Store in an airtight container, as with all of the art supplies in this article.

Sidewalk Chalk

1 c. plaster of paris
1/2 c. water
2-3 T. tempera paint

Mix plaster of paris and tempera paint, then add water and mix well. Pour into molds and let dry for 24 hours. Remove from mold and let air dry for 2-7 days depending on size. You can use paper cups, plastic butter tubs or food trays, candy molds, muffin tins, or even toilet paper tubes covered with foil on one end.

Finger Paint

1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 c. cornstarch
3 T. sugar
2 c. cold water
Food coloring
Dishwashing liquid
White shelf paper

Soak gelatin in 1/4 c. warm water and put aside. Combine cornstarch and sugar in medium sized pot. Gradually add remaining water and cook slowly over low heat, stirring until well blended. Remove from heat and add gelatin. Divide into containers, adding a drop or two of d/w liquid and food coloring to each.

Paint

1 c. liquid starch
6 c. water
1/2 c. soap powder
Food coloring

Dissolve soap powder in water, add starch and food coloring.

Edible Peanut Butter Play Dough

This recipe is especially good for toddlers because they can play with the dough and then eat it. (Be sure to wash hands and work area!)  It’s also one of my favorite candies, when made with peanut butter and powdered sugar!

1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 c. plus 1/2 c. powdered milk

Mix ingredients and roll into balls.

Cook Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1 c. water
1 T. oil
food coloring

Mix first three ingredients together and then add last three. Cook on low heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball and becomes dull.

Kool-Aid Play Dough
(no cooking required)

3 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 pkg. unsweetened Kool-aid
1 T. alum
2 c. boiling water

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water. Knead dough with up to an additional 1 c. of flour until it becomes the right consistency.

Jell-O Play Dough
(no cooking required)

4 c. flour
1 c. salt
2 pkgs. unsweetened Jell-O
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 c. boiling water
2 tsp. cooking oil or baby oil

Mix together first three ingredients then add boiling water and oil.  Mix together well and knead until dough becomes the right consistency.

Sticky Putty

3/4 c. plus 2 T. water
1 tsp. Mule Team Borax
8 ounces white glue
Food coloring

Heat water over medium heat and add borax, stir with wooden spoon until dissolved. Add glue and a few drops of food coloring, stirring constantly until glue and water mix. Pour into a plastic bowl and cool.

Modeling Clay

1 c. cornstarch
1 and 1/2 c. water
16 ounces baking soda

Combine cornstarch and baking soda together in large saucepan. Stir in water and cook over low heat until the mixture becomes thick and forms a ball. Remove from heat and cool. Knead the dough on a countertop dusted with cornstarch until smooth.

Air Dry Clay

3 c. flour
1 c. salt
1/2 c. white glue
1 c. water
1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix together until well blended. Mold into shapes or roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Let dry overnight before painting.

Papier-mâché

Mix one part flour with about 2 parts of water until you get a consistency like thick glue. Add more water or flour as necessary. Mix well to get out all the bumps.

Goop

2 c salt
1 c. water
1 c. cornstarch

Cook salt and 1/2 c. of water for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and remaining 1/2 c. of water, then return to heat. Stir until mixture thickens. You can also add food coloring to this.

Multi-colored crayons

Peel broken crayons and melt carefully in a small aluminum pan at 350 degrees for 15 -20 minutes. Cool and break into new multi-colored pieces, or carefully pour melted mixture into small waxed paper cups and remove paper when cooled.

Disappearing Paint

Mix 1/8 tsp. “bluing” (laundry additive) with 2 cups water. Paint the sidewalk and watch the blue color disappear.

Face Paint

Mix poster paints with cold cream.

Cinnamon Clay

This recipe is great for Christmas ornaments or scented hearts around the home.

1/4 c. white glue
1/3 c. applesauce
3 T. cinnamon
1 and 3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. water

Mix ingredients together until dough forms a ball. Knead dough for 1-2 minutes, adding a little more flour if needed. Roll dough out and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes.

Crazy Putty
(this putty bounces)

3/4 c. of white glue

Add enough liquid starch until a ball of dough is formed, then add food coloring and knead dough until it’s completely worked in.

Slime

1 c. glue
Liquid starch
Food coloring, if desired

Add starch to glue slowly until mixture becomes the right texture; slimey!

Lap Desk

Make a pillow out of scrap material, fiberfill and some poly/plastic beads to make it squishy. Attach a lap tray or board with strips of Velcro.

Resources:

The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions and The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions 2

Kids’ Crazy Art Concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Art & Craft Fun

se two parts white glue with one part warm water. Put the glue and water into a plastic bowl. Add more water, while stirring the mixture, until you get a soupy mixture. The final product should be watery yet still have a slight white glue consistency.

Second, you can create a flour paste to use as Plaster of Paris. Use two to three cups of white flour with one cup to two cups of warm water. Mix the flour and water in a plastic bowl until there are no lumps, and the consistency is a smooth paste that’s easy to stir.

Yum, more about yum pancakes. Oatmeal banana pancakes. I so love pancakes. I think my son could eat them for breakfast, web lunch and dinner. He is a picky eater. Occasionally he will surprise me like the time he ate hummus with carrots. He did not start out picky. In fact, treatment when he started solids the more gourmet the better. Pancakes is one area I have made gradual changes. I swapped out the all-purpose flour for oat flour, added wheat germ and ground flax seed and omitted the sugar. I feel better knowing he is getting some nutrition. He ate these banana pancakes without a single peep. Be sure to visit Simple Bites to read the post for Banana Oatmeal Pancakes. You will find a few more suggestions to placate a picky eater.

The addition of ground oatmeal flour gives the cakes a nice hearty texture. Be sure to puree the banana it helps it blend in nicely with the other liquids. I was worried about the strong flavor of the honey but you cannot even taste it.

Source: Simple Bites
makes about 20 pancakes
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoon ground flax seed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups low-fat milk, room temperature
1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt, room temperature
3 tablespoons melted butter or canola oil
1/3 cup honey
1 1/3 cup puréed ripe bananas, about 4 medium bananas
2 eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature

Preheat a large skillet over low heat.

Add the oats to a food processor and process until very fine. In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, ground oats, flax seed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

In a separate medium-sized bowl, combine the milk, yogurt, cooled butter or canola oil, honey, banana, and eggs. Hand whisk until thoroughly combined, but do not beat.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the liquids into the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated. Do not beat the mixture. Just stir until moist and combined.

Turn the heat on the pan or griddle up to medium-low. Grease with cooking spray, oil, or butter according to your preference. Add the batter 1/4 cup per pancake to the pan. Cook until golden brown on the bottom before flipping.

You can usually tell it is ready to flip because the top will start to bubble. Pancakes can be kept warm in a 150 degree oven on an oven-safe plate or cookie sheet while the remaining cook. Serve with sliced banana, your favorite jam, honey, or syrup.

To freeze leftovers: Cool on a cookie cooling rack completely. Then, place pancakes in gallon-sized zip top bags. To reheat, warm in a toaster oven or microwave.

Variations:
– Swap oats for instant oatmeal and process as directed. Or use oat flour, no need to process.
– Use sour cream in the place of yogurt.
– Replace the wheat flour with all-purpose or gluten free mix.
– Add chopped or broken pecans to the batter or sprinkle on each pancake after you pour the batter onto the hot griddle.
– Swap the banana puree with pumpkin puree, sweet potatoes or applesauce.

Recipe for a simple version of Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes.

Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, view tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, drugs mace, viagra order pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English. There are as many versions of Shepherds or Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is a mixture of beef with gravy and loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/swedish_meatballs-print/

Serves 10-12 (about 40-50 meatballs)
Meatballs:
4 tbsp butter, site divided
1 large yellow onion, finely diced (or grated on a cheese grater)
1 cup milk
2 1/2 to 3 cups bread crumbs (or 4-5 slices of bread processed in a food processor)
1 1/4 pound ground pork
2 pounds ground beef (buy the package that says market fresh or fresh)
2 eggs
1 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt

Sauce:
6 Tbsp butter
1/3 cup flour
1 quart beef stock

In a large skillet, sauté onion in 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat until soften and translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Remove pan from heat and let cool.

Pour milk into the mixing bowl of an electric mixer. Add bread crumbs and let sit; about 2 to 5 minutes or until the milk is completely soaked up.

Add the ground pork, ground beef, cooled onions (reserving the pan to cook in), eggs, nutmeg, cardamom, salt and pepper. until the ingredients are well combined.

Use a cookie scoop to measure out tablespoon sized balls. Using your hands roll into meatballs. Set meatballs on a baking sheet.

In the same pan used to cook the onions, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium to medium high heat. When the butter has melted add the meatballs in batches, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Brown meatballs on all sides about 40 seconds to 1 minute each side until nice and browned. Scoop out and place on a baking rack placed in a baking sheet. (This helps to drain the excess fat)

Sauce:
In the same pan over medium heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter for the sauce. When the butter has melted slowly add the flour, mixing continuously with a wire whisk until smooth. Cook about 1 minute longer to brown. Continue to whisk while adding the broth in a steady stream. Whisk sauce until it is completely smooth and void of any lumps. Bring to a boil then turn the heat to low; simmer about 5 minutes more to thicken.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

To serve, remove the meatballs from the sauce and place in a serving bowl. If desired add the sour cream mixing well. Serve with Lingonberry Jelly, boiled potatoes and steamed green beans.

Variations:
— Mix a couple tablespoons lingonberry, cranberry, red currant or raspberry jelly, into the sauce before serving.
–Mix 1/2 to 3/4 cup sour cream with the meatballs in the serving bowl.
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, page drug tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterened after the stoneware dishes of Ethat could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, mind mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, information pills tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat. The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef unlike the Shepherds Pie made with mutton. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season.

The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Pie” seasoned with cloves, there mace, this pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes. The English, Australians and New Zealanders ate Cottage Pie is traditionally made withThe English, Australians and New Zealanders “Cottage Pie” made with beef.

This version is lower on the fat and packed with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, cure tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English in the 1600’s. There are as many versions of Shepherds/Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/swedish_meatballs-print/

Serves 10-12 (about 40-50 meatballs)
Meatballs:
4 tbsp butter, site divided
1 large yellow onion, finely diced (or grated on a cheese grater)
1 cup milk
2 1/2 to 3 cups bread crumbs (or 4-5 slices of bread processed in a food processor)
1 1/4 pound ground pork
2 pounds ground beef (buy the package that says market fresh or fresh)
2 eggs
1 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt

Sauce:
6 Tbsp butter
1/3 cup flour
1 quart beef stock

In a large skillet, sauté onion in 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat until soften and translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Remove pan from heat and let cool.

Pour milk into the mixing bowl of an electric mixer. Add bread crumbs and let sit; about 2 to 5 minutes or until the milk is completely soaked up.

Add the ground pork, ground beef, cooled onions (reserving the pan to cook in), eggs, nutmeg, cardamom, salt and pepper. until the ingredients are well combined.

Use a cookie scoop to measure out tablespoon sized balls. Using your hands roll into meatballs. Set meatballs on a baking sheet.

In the same pan used to cook the onions, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium to medium high heat. When the butter has melted add the meatballs in batches, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Brown meatballs on all sides about 40 seconds to 1 minute each side until nice and browned. Scoop out and place on a baking rack placed in a baking sheet. (This helps to drain the excess fat)

Sauce:
In the same pan over medium heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter for the sauce. When the butter has melted slowly add the flour, mixing continuously with a wire whisk until smooth. Cook about 1 minute longer to brown. Continue to whisk while adding the broth in a steady stream. Whisk sauce until it is completely smooth and void of any lumps. Bring to a boil then turn the heat to low; simmer about 5 minutes more to thicken.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

To serve, remove the meatballs from the sauce and place in a serving bowl. If desired add the sour cream mixing well. Serve with Lingonberry Jelly, boiled potatoes and steamed green beans.

Variations:
— Mix a couple tablespoons lingonberry, cranberry, red currant or raspberry jelly, into the sauce before serving.
–Mix 1/2 to 3/4 cup sour cream with the meatballs in the serving bowl.
Shepherds Pie is a meat pie dating back to the Middle Ages. Traditionally “Mutton Pie” was made using lamb or mutton and vegetables baked in a thick pastry shell called a “coffyn”. The pastry was thick, find tough and inedible. The “coffyn” was a type of baking dish patterned after the stoneware dishes of Ancient Egypt that could withstand hours of heat.

The “Cottage Pie” is believed to have originated in Scotland. The cottage pie was traditionally made with beef and vegetables topped with mashed potatoes unlike the shepherds pie made with mutton and vegetables. Pies or casseroles were a useful way to use left over meat. The vegetables consisted of what ever was available that season. The Elizabethans favored a similar “Minced Meat Pie” seasoned with cloves, more about mace, pepper, saffron, raisins and prunes.

Cottage pie came across the seas to the America’s with the English. There are as many versions of Shepherds or Cottage pie as there are Grandmothers. This recipe for Cottage Pie is a mixture of beef with gravy and loaded with veggies.

Source: Elli Krieger
1 pound lean ground beef (90 percent lean or higher) or turkey
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or creamery potatoes
1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
2/3 cup 1 percent lowfat milk
2 tablespoons butter

In a large nonstick skillet cook the meat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate. Drain any fat remaining in the skillet.

Heat the oil in the skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook, covered, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Raise the heat to moderately-high. Add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft and their liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes longer. Return the meat to the pan. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the broth, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper and bring to a simmer being sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the peas. Pour the mixture into a 12-cup shallow baking dish (about 11 by 9 inches).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub the potatoes and cut into 2-inch pieces. Arrange the potatoes in a steamer basket, and steam for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower to the basket and cook until the potatoes and cauliflower are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes longer. Mash the vegetables with a potato masher until smooth. Heat the milk, butter, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper and stir into the potato mixture.

Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat and bake until heated through, about 25 minutes.

Variations:
— For a smaller serving bake individual cups using 6-oz ramekins per person; or use half the mixture and bake in a 9X9-inch pan.
– Use the leftover potatoes with another main dish later in the week.
– Use the leftover meat mixture in a pot pie. Grease a pie plate with oil or butter. Lay 1 pie crust in the bottom then fill with meat mixture. Top with another layer of pie crust. Freeze or use within the next two days. – Make a Mexican pie. Add a tablespoon chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, black beans and corn. Layer in a cake pan: tortilla, mixture, cheese. Repeat. Freeze or use within the next two days.

Research: Food Time Line & What’s Cooking America
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, cialis 40mg optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Fast alternati
I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, buy information pills kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, yogurt, cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

I had a pint of heavy cream left over from a Slovian nut roll I made for Three Kings Day. I really hate it when I have to throw expired goods away. Like the four pears that ended up in the trash because I kept putting off and putting off making something with them. Cream especially is not a cheap commodity. Ideally I should have made my favorite Gingered Pear Crisp. Golden spires of cinnamon crisp and gingered pears encircled by a mote of cream. The perfect excuse for a dinner party. Only there has been no time for a party and now my pears are a soupy mush.

Friday night is movie night and therefore kids menu night as well. The choices are usually limited to…well, viagra kids favorites. Little ones can be pretty finicky. Take my three year old for example. His diet mainly consists of cereal, this yogurt, link cheese, milk and few bites of dinner (a bribe he must eat in order to have a yogurt with his dinner). The other two will eat most anything especially anything alfredo. Now normally my alfredo is a generic knock off using milk and flour with a little parmesan. The best part is the spinach filled raviolis they devour by the fork load. Give them homemade mac and cheese and I have a war to deal with.

Once again they surprise me. Only problem was I was not prepared. There was a time they liked shrimp. Then they did not. Now they do. My tip for Shrimp Alfredo is to make extra shrimp, just in case.

Serves 6
Source: ButterYum Blogspot
1 pound peeled and de-veined shrimp, cooked
1 pound linguine or fettuccine
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-4 cloves of garlic, smashed and left whole
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
lemon zest for garnish (optional)

If using frozen cooked shrimp thaw in the refrigerator that morning.
Cook raw shrimp in 2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup chicken broth; until slightly pink. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until desired doneness.

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over med-hi heat. Add the smashed garlic cloves and cook for a minute or two, until you the garlic has flavored the butter/oil well, you will be able to smell the garlic aroma. It’s okay to let the garlic brown a bit, but don’t let it burn. Remove the garlic from the butter/oil. Add the heavy cream; heat until bubbly. Add the cheese; stir until melted and well incorporated. Lower the heat and simmer at a slow rolling boil until the pasta is ready.

Drain pasta. Just before adding the pasta, add the shrimp to the sauce and gently heat through; being careful not to over cook. Add the parsley, salt and pepper, and optional lemon zest; stir. Add pasta and toss well; serve immediately.

Note – this dish will thicken quickly upon standing. Recipe doubles well. Leftovers can be reheated by adding a little milk and stirring slowly over med heat. Cooked chicken and/or other long pasta shapes can be substituted.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, diagnosis skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.

Super Bowl Sunday is set for February 6th. If you are not heading to the Cowboys Stadium then it is time to plan your home turf game menu. This year we’ve got a pizza bar theme. The two contending teams are the Gourmet Pesto Chicken French Bread Pizza and my personal favorite the BBQ chicken pizza.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
1/2 – 1 lb. boneless, decease skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper or type of poultry seasoning
2 loaves French bread, information pills halved lengthwise
1 – 1 1/2 cups pesto
2 cups Italian or pizza blend cheese
1 large tomato, sliced

Season chicken breasts to taste. Bake at 350 degrees until fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into thin slices.

Spread pesto on each of the four halves of bread. Evenly layer the chicken pieces on top of the pesto.

Cover completely with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, until cheese is completely melted and lightly golden brown.


When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft

and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, what is ed optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, doctor salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, cialis 40mg optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Fast alternati
When I was little I loved Pizza Hut pizza. The crust was so thick and crunchy on the outside and so soft and warm on the inside. Each slice had the perfect ratio of sauce to cheese. Of course if it was not a special occasion we usually ate homemade or Little Caesars. I remember the first time I had Pizza Hut BBQ pizza was on a trip to Atlanta. The BBQ flavor was short lived. Besides I seemed to have been the only one who favored a non traditional slice of pie.

Source: Stolen Moments Cooking
For the crust:
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning, more about optional
4 – 4 1/2 cups flour (can use 3 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)

Let yeast and sugar dissolve in warm water in a large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, viagra 60mg salt and optional Italian seasoning.

Slowly add the flour until completely combined and dough is no longer sticky. Knead for 5 minutes, dosage place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Depending on how thin you like your crust, this makes enough for 2 large pizzas plus 2 small pizzas. The extra dough can be frozen.

For the barbecue sauce:
1 1/2 cups ketchup
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 tsp each – allspice, crushed red pepper flakes, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

Add everything to a small bowl and stir until combined. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to blend.

For the toppings:
1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
1/2 pounds bacon, diced and crisped *optional
1 onion, thinly sliced and caramelized (cooked in 2 tsp bacon grease or butter.) *optional
1 cup frozen corn, thawed *optional
2 cup shredded pizza blend cheese

To assemble the pizzas:
Roll out dough into desired sizes on thickness. Place on a baking sheet or stone dusted with cornmeal.

Spread barbecue sauce on top of the crust, leaving about 1/2 inch crust all the way around.

Top with chicken, any other desired toppings and cheese. Bake at 500 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Variations:
— Sub flour tortillas or frozen or refrigerated pizza dough for the homemade version.

The common consensus regarding the proper way to season Prime Rib is a little salt and pepper. The meat is so flavorful that nothing else is needed. I agree. The worst experience I had with prime rib was at a restaurant whose chef covered the slab of beef with an assortment of herbs; most influential was rosemary. However, erectile there I have to vere away from traditional opinion and recommend this recipe for garlic crusted prime rib.

Lets talk meat. First the word Prime refers to the grade of meat not the cut. Prime meats are only sold to restaurants. You will not find a package labeled prime rib at the local supermarket. If you do not have a local butcher shop it is possible that warehouses such as Costco or Sams will carry Prime Rib. Otherwise you can use a Rib-Eye Roast from the supermarket. Choose between a bone in roast, link called a standing rib roast, or boneless. When choosing a boneless roast ask the butcher to tie it for you.

Source: Chef Mike
1 (10 pound) prime rib roast
10 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried thyme

Place the roast in a roasting pan with the fatty side up. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the mixture over the fatty layer of the roast, and let the roast sit out until it is at room temperature, no longer than 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C).
Bake the roast for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C), and continue roasting for an additional 60 to 75 minutes. The internal temperature of the roast should be at 125 degrees F (53 degrees C) for medium rare.
Allow the roast to rest for 10 or 15 minutes before carving so the meat can retain its juices. Do not cover with aluminium foil.

February Website Review: ChessJam

This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Prep: 10 min., drugs Chill: 30 min., visit this site Grill: 22 min., Stand: 5 min. Sweet orange marmalade is slightly less bitter than traditional orange marmalade. Either works fine in this recipe. If your chops are thinner than ours, reduce the grilling time.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Other: 35 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Ingredients

* 4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 2 teaspoons soy sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade
* 1/2 cup bottled barbecue sauce
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

Preparation

Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jack Daniel’s Original No. 7 Barbecue Recipe Grilling Sauce.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Prep: 10 min., drugs Chill: 30 min., visit this site Grill: 22 min., Stand: 5 min. Sweet orange marmalade is slightly less bitter than traditional orange marmalade. Either works fine in this recipe. If your chops are thinner than ours, reduce the grilling time.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Other: 35 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Ingredients

* 4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 2 teaspoons soy sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade
* 1/2 cup bottled barbecue sauce
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

Preparation

Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jack Daniel’s Original No. 7 Barbecue Recipe Grilling Sauce.

hobbies_magazine_j_e_standley_cover

Photo: Hobbies Magazine February-March 1919 issue, help cover by J.E. Standley

Several years ago a friend of mine started a Yahoo Group for local moms comprised of her friends, try our friends and their friends as a way to share news quickly without having to call everyone. We post upcoming events, drugs deals for the local restaurants, coupons for the grocery store, items we are looking to get rid of or looking for and parenting woes and advice, among other things. Occasionally my friend will pose a question to start a discussion. The first question asked us to list some of our hobbies and projects we are working on. Before children I had hobbies. I am sure of it. Sadly they were placed by the wayside and over time forgotten. This actually is not a bad thing. It is part of growing up. With each stage of life come new and exciting ideas that we can look forward to. Otherwise we would all be playing with barbies and GI-Joe figures at age 36. However if you have young children you are probably doing just that.

This month’s resolution is all about finding a hobby that is fun, yet challenging. My goal for this month was to finally sign up for fencing classes. For years I have had a secret desire to learn fencing. Just when I was about to sign up for classes we uprooted our family and moved to another city that does not offer any classes. Now I am left trying to figure out another alternative.

A hobby should be something you want to do. It should be relaxing never forced; although sometimes our children need a little push to motivate them in the right direction until they find something suitable. A hobby should be all about the passion. If you are doing it because everyone else is doing it or because you have to then it becomes a chore not a hobby. Here is the exception to the rule. I love to read. Recently I found a group of women in my area who share a passion for literature. Each month someone chooses a book from a long list of classic literature. The following month we meet for breakfast to discuss the novel and how it relates to us in our time. The experience has been exhilarating. Most of the books are not books I normally would have picked up to read. Yes at times, when I would rather be reading something else less complicated, it feels like a chore; however, the goal of enriching my life through beautiful literature and then connecting with other moms is the hobby. Studies have found that when we are genuinely engaged in an activity we find interesting we fuel our self-esteem and life becomes more exciting. After my first book club meeting I felt alive. Invigorated. I was inspired.

In a society such as we live in the term hobby is often viewed as juvenile. The truth is we all need enriching experiences to help us stay centered and live a more balanced life. We all want success in some form. We all want to give our best to our bosses, families and friends. However, it is impossible to maintain such high demands of ourselves without causing a negative impact on our health and well being. When we allow ourselves to become tired and drained from work or overloaded with obligations our ability to innovate drops significantly. Our failure pushes us to work even harder. We feel guilty. We feel frustrated. Ultimately we feel defeated. Hobbies help relieve the stress resulting in a happier you.

A hobby is a fantastic way to blow off steam from a stressful workweek. A friend of mine could not wait until Saturday morning to hop on his bike and ride for 3 hours to distress. Hobbies such as collecting books, stamps and maps have a historical educational value. Tinkering hobbies like building trains, models, rockets and cars can build career oriented talents. Active hobbies like hiking, running and sports invigorate us. Moreover, hobbies can enhance our creative minds and help us think more clearly. I always seem to find my best inspirations while I am running or working on a project.

Sometimes we may feel guilty selfishly setting alone time aside for our personal hobbies. The truth is our hobbies can have a lasting impact on the children who learn from watching us. When they see mom and dad happily working on a hobby they are more likely to engage in a hobby themselves. They may copy what their parents are doing or adopt something of their own. Learning to manage their free time at an early age will benefit them when they are older. As parents we can help them discover enjoyable activities together. I love camping and hiking. I am passionate about camping and hiking. However it is no longer the relaxing hobby I enjoyed when I was a single college student or newly married. With our three little ones it is no easy feat. Yet, we continue to put on a brave face and take our kids hiking to give them rich fulfilling experiences. Hobbies shared with parents create lasting bonds. These activities such as sports, running, music, camping, cooking, fishing among others continue to hold value after the children have grown and move off to college. Children are also less likely to turn to drugs or exhibit bad behaviors when they are older if they are pursuing fun interesting hobbies to keep them busy. Who knows maybe the little boy that was into building rockets will grow up to become a rock scientist.

Choose a hobby from the following list or log onto DiscoverAHobby.com for a more comprehensive list of ideas. Local colleges, home and garden depots and craft shops offer all sorts of classes for a minimal fee. Contact a small mom and pop shop or ranch to see if they would be interested in training an apprentice for free or ask a friend to teach you.

  • Start a singing group. Gather some of your friends and their friends to meet once a month to sing together. Or join a community theater or adult choir in your area. Music has powerful effects over the mind.
  • Schedule periodic camping and hiking trips with your spouse or friends. It is always a treat to get away with gals or buddies.
  • Start a running or walking group.
  • Learn taekwondo, (some dojos offer family classes on the weekend) boxing, biking, fencing, dance, archery, rock climbing, yoga, weight lifting.
  • Gather some friends every Saturday morning to play volleyball, soccer, basketball, rugby, horseback riding, basketball, baseball.
  • Learn to Kayak, canoe, fish, scuba diving, wilderness camping, hiking.
  • Learn to scrapbook photos.
  • Build models, carpentry work, Gardening, car mechanics, basic home repairs.
  • Collect stamps, antiques, maps, wooden boxes, baskets, toys, pictures, books, coins, cars, art.
  • Learn about home theaters.
  • Complete a Puzzle.
  • Tour historical sites and museums.
  • Learn a foreign language.
  • Take an arts and crafts class in quilting, sewing, flower arrangements, photography, painting, pottery, wood carving, knitting, stained glass, interior design, jewelry, welding.
  • Study a musical instrument such as the guitar, piano, cello, violin, brass or woodwind instruments, organ, mandolin, lire, drums, voice.
  • Take up journaling, writing, poetry.
  • Join a book club or start one of your own.
  • Take a cooking class or start a cooking club..
  • Learn CPR, first aide.

This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Prep: 10 min., drugs Chill: 30 min., visit this site Grill: 22 min., Stand: 5 min. Sweet orange marmalade is slightly less bitter than traditional orange marmalade. Either works fine in this recipe. If your chops are thinner than ours, reduce the grilling time.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Other: 35 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Ingredients

* 4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 2 teaspoons soy sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade
* 1/2 cup bottled barbecue sauce
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

Preparation

Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jack Daniel’s Original No. 7 Barbecue Recipe Grilling Sauce.

hobbies_magazine_j_e_standley_cover

Photo: Hobbies Magazine February-March 1919 issue, help cover by J.E. Standley

Several years ago a friend of mine started a Yahoo Group for local moms comprised of her friends, try our friends and their friends as a way to share news quickly without having to call everyone. We post upcoming events, drugs deals for the local restaurants, coupons for the grocery store, items we are looking to get rid of or looking for and parenting woes and advice, among other things. Occasionally my friend will pose a question to start a discussion. The first question asked us to list some of our hobbies and projects we are working on. Before children I had hobbies. I am sure of it. Sadly they were placed by the wayside and over time forgotten. This actually is not a bad thing. It is part of growing up. With each stage of life come new and exciting ideas that we can look forward to. Otherwise we would all be playing with barbies and GI-Joe figures at age 36. However if you have young children you are probably doing just that.

This month’s resolution is all about finding a hobby that is fun, yet challenging. My goal for this month was to finally sign up for fencing classes. For years I have had a secret desire to learn fencing. Just when I was about to sign up for classes we uprooted our family and moved to another city that does not offer any classes. Now I am left trying to figure out another alternative.

A hobby should be something you want to do. It should be relaxing never forced; although sometimes our children need a little push to motivate them in the right direction until they find something suitable. A hobby should be all about the passion. If you are doing it because everyone else is doing it or because you have to then it becomes a chore not a hobby. Here is the exception to the rule. I love to read. Recently I found a group of women in my area who share a passion for literature. Each month someone chooses a book from a long list of classic literature. The following month we meet for breakfast to discuss the novel and how it relates to us in our time. The experience has been exhilarating. Most of the books are not books I normally would have picked up to read. Yes at times, when I would rather be reading something else less complicated, it feels like a chore; however, the goal of enriching my life through beautiful literature and then connecting with other moms is the hobby. Studies have found that when we are genuinely engaged in an activity we find interesting we fuel our self-esteem and life becomes more exciting. After my first book club meeting I felt alive. Invigorated. I was inspired.

In a society such as we live in the term hobby is often viewed as juvenile. The truth is we all need enriching experiences to help us stay centered and live a more balanced life. We all want success in some form. We all want to give our best to our bosses, families and friends. However, it is impossible to maintain such high demands of ourselves without causing a negative impact on our health and well being. When we allow ourselves to become tired and drained from work or overloaded with obligations our ability to innovate drops significantly. Our failure pushes us to work even harder. We feel guilty. We feel frustrated. Ultimately we feel defeated. Hobbies help relieve the stress resulting in a happier you.

A hobby is a fantastic way to blow off steam from a stressful workweek. A friend of mine could not wait until Saturday morning to hop on his bike and ride for 3 hours to distress. Hobbies such as collecting books, stamps and maps have a historical educational value. Tinkering hobbies like building trains, models, rockets and cars can build career oriented talents. Active hobbies like hiking, running and sports invigorate us. Moreover, hobbies can enhance our creative minds and help us think more clearly. I always seem to find my best inspirations while I am running or working on a project.

Sometimes we may feel guilty selfishly setting alone time aside for our personal hobbies. The truth is our hobbies can have a lasting impact on the children who learn from watching us. When they see mom and dad happily working on a hobby they are more likely to engage in a hobby themselves. They may copy what their parents are doing or adopt something of their own. Learning to manage their free time at an early age will benefit them when they are older. As parents we can help them discover enjoyable activities together. I love camping and hiking. I am passionate about camping and hiking. However it is no longer the relaxing hobby I enjoyed when I was a single college student or newly married. With our three little ones it is no easy feat. Yet, we continue to put on a brave face and take our kids hiking to give them rich fulfilling experiences. Hobbies shared with parents create lasting bonds. These activities such as sports, running, music, camping, cooking, fishing among others continue to hold value after the children have grown and move off to college. Children are also less likely to turn to drugs or exhibit bad behaviors when they are older if they are pursuing fun interesting hobbies to keep them busy. Who knows maybe the little boy that was into building rockets will grow up to become a rock scientist.

Choose a hobby from the following list or log onto DiscoverAHobby.com for a more comprehensive list of ideas. Local colleges, home and garden depots and craft shops offer all sorts of classes for a minimal fee. Contact a small mom and pop shop or ranch to see if they would be interested in training an apprentice for free or ask a friend to teach you.

  • Start a singing group. Gather some of your friends and their friends to meet once a month to sing together. Or join a community theater or adult choir in your area. Music has powerful effects over the mind.
  • Schedule periodic camping and hiking trips with your spouse or friends. It is always a treat to get away with gals or buddies.
  • Start a running or walking group.
  • Learn taekwondo, (some dojos offer family classes on the weekend) boxing, biking, fencing, dance, archery, rock climbing, yoga, weight lifting.
  • Gather some friends every Saturday morning to play volleyball, soccer, basketball, rugby, horseback riding, basketball, baseball.
  • Learn to Kayak, canoe, fish, scuba diving, wilderness camping, hiking.
  • Learn to scrapbook photos.
  • Build models, carpentry work, Gardening, car mechanics, basic home repairs.
  • Collect stamps, antiques, maps, wooden boxes, baskets, toys, pictures, books, coins, cars, art.
  • Learn about home theaters.
  • Complete a Puzzle.
  • Tour historical sites and museums.
  • Learn a foreign language.
  • Take an arts and crafts class in quilting, sewing, flower arrangements, photography, painting, pottery, wood carving, knitting, stained glass, interior design, jewelry, welding.
  • Study a musical instrument such as the guitar, piano, cello, violin, brass or woodwind instruments, organ, mandolin, lire, drums, voice.
  • Take up journaling, writing, poetry.
  • Join a book club or start one of your own.
  • Take a cooking class or start a cooking club..
  • Learn CPR, first aide.

dancing-in-the-rain

Photo: Dancing in the Rain, visit this site courtesy of Photo Bucket

Someone once told me they were leery of overly happy people because they must be hiding something. I think that there are individuals out there who are genuinely happy. The faults of life roll off their backs like RainX on a car windshield. On the opposite side of the glass half-full crowd are those who need to wallow in self-pity. They feel robbed of their liberties if their feelings are not validated. They feel they are  fake if they act contrary to how they feel. If they do not feel happy then why should they be happy? Problem is when they are not happy they feel no one should be happy. Thus we are all made to feel miserable with them.

One day I was listening to a radio talk show. The caller expressed the need to be true to her feelings but longed to be happy like her fiancé. Even so, seek she found it difficult to “fake” being nice if she did not feel like being nice. Her question was if she woke up on the wrong side of the bed was it ok to fake being happy? The host told her if that is what she needed to do then yes it is ok because it is never ok to lash out at someone. The host then added that sometimes when we try to be happy by smiling and doing nice things for other people eventually we become happy.

Not long ago I received terrible news that a dear friend of mine had succumb to liver cancer. She discovered that she had cancer only three months prior to her death. Donna was in her late 50’s. Her life had been fraught with peril at every turn. She was abused and abandoned most of her existence. She was strong. She was a fighter. She survived every negative confrontation thrown at her. By the time we met in my late twenties she was no longer the victim. Her rosy cheeks and denim overalls said everything about her character. She was soft spoken and kind. She would give the shirt off her back to help someone. She was genuine; always a pleasure to be around. She always had a kind word to say on both good and bad days. I loved being around Donna  because she was fun.

As the month progressed I learned of the severe personal tumults suffered by several of my dearest friends. I realized  that day there are more people than we realize who have or are  suffering in some form or another. Despite their afflictions, they strive to keep their heads high making the most of what they have. They have dealt with the past. They are moving on. Their lives are not perfect. They are battle worn and scared. Nevertheless, they are striving to make their lives and those around them better. These women are some of the most noble people I have had the pleasure of befriending. Most importantly despite their hardships they are permitting themselves to have fun and enjoy the pleasures of life.

boat by Dapixara

Photo: Red Boat, by Dapixara

When I was a young girl I loved the movie Pollyanna starring Haley Mills. Pollyanna is a vibrant 11 year old girl. Upon her father’s untimely death she was shipped off to live with her Aunt Polly. The daughter of a Missionary Minister, Pollyanna did without the finer things in life. Her only belongings came from missionary barrels or donations. As it so happens, one summer she begged her father for a doll. The ‘Ladies Aid’ tried to find one but all they received by the time the barrel needed to be sent off was a set of crutches. Pollyanna’s father seeing her terrible sadness came up with an idea. He asked her to find something glad about the situation. When she could not he told her she could be glad that she does not have to use the crutches. From that time forward she and her father played what they called the “Glad Game”. Pollyanna set about changing the hearts of everyone around her including her sour-hearted Aunt Polly. One passage I greatly enjoyed, reading in the novel written by Eleanor H. Porter, occurred shortly after her arrival. Miss Polly had just given Pollyanna her daily schedule consisting of cleaning her room first thing in the morning after which she should read 30 minutes aloud to Miss Polly followed by cooking lessons. In the late afternoon Pollyanna was expected to practice the piano. Pollyanna asked “what about living?” When was she supposed to live when her time was taken up with all these extra activities? She lamented that she did not want to just breathe she wanted to live. And so she did. Her Aunt Polly was surprised at the numerous acquaintances Pollyanna had made and the impact Pollyanna made in their lives. The Aunt Polly was so moved by the town’s love for Pollyanna that her own heart softened so much so that she became susceptible to love and forgiveness. The glad game is not that simple. You must find something to be glad about on all occasions. Learning to look on the brighter side of life enabled Pollyanna to step out without fear of condemnation. People loved her because she was so much fun to be with. She could be friends with even the grouchiest of souls because life held no bounds.

This month’s resolution is to have fun. I made this list in the beginning of the year. When July neared I was unsure of what exactly Fun meant. The word Fun is defined as something that provides enjoyment or amusement. I think fun means being able to lighten up despite our circumstances. Miss Polly caved into and was trapped by embarrassment for 11 to 15 years. Her fears lead her down a lonesome unemotional path. Pollyanna gently guided her away from tight buns, dark clothing and pursed lips and back into a world full of color, friendships and joy. Fun for some may include dancing on the bar top but I am not talking about temporary self-satisfaction. Remember the New Year’s resolution’s purpose is to enlighten us and make us better friends, neighbors and relatives. Some activities are better left in the ignorance of youth. The fun I speak of entails allowing ourselves the freedom to stop and enjoy life. Put the electronics away. Forgive whom you need to. Find the glad in your most heart-breaking sorrows as difficult as it may be. To have fun is to help others find the glad so that they too can have fun. To have fun is to vow even though we wake up disgruntled we can make the choice to fake being glad if we have to. To have fun is to discover why everyone calls you the “party-pooper” or “no fun” and change it.

Nuns Having Fun by Maureen Kelly and Jeffrey Stone

Photo: Nuns Having Fun

I try to teach my children it is ok to feel hurt, angry, sad, disappointed they are all legitimate feelings. But, we make the choice to let those feelings dictate our behavior and attitude or to let it go. It is not easy trying to tell that to a five year old who demands justice even to the point of missing out on the fun that is happening at that moment. I know there is more injustice going on in the world than we can fathom. There are people out there who are suffering or have suffered tremendous acts of violence, abuse and emotional warfare. Yet, day after day they keep moving forward. The writer Erma Bombeck wrote a column, upon discovering that she was dying from cancer, entitled “If I Had to Live My Life Over.” Erma wrote, “… I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage. I would have talked less and listened more. I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained, or the sofa faded. I would have eaten the popcorn in the ‘good’ living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace. … I would have sat on the lawn with my kids, even if it meant grass stains.” During the month of July I hope to use up the bottle of perfume sitting in the vanity drawer. I want to view my new home as a vacation rental. I want to find more of the glad, relax and have fun.

This is a short but fairly long list on how to have fun. The possibilities are practically endless. My hope is maybe something on the list will spawn additional fun ideas. Please feel free to share your FUN in the comments section.

Each day write down 3-5 positive things that happened that day.

Learn to have fun playing the glad game.

– Watch the clouds

– Watch a sun rise

– Take a midnight swim

– Observe bugs

– Pick flowers

– Camping

– Build a fort

– Take a treat or a balloon to friends and family.

– Read a book and come up with a project or something fun to do based on the material.

– Call the girls or take your daughter(s) to go get pedicures.

– Go on a leisurely bike ride with friends.

– Host a mystery dinner.

– Have an unbirthday party.

– Pay for the person behind you at the movies or toll booth.

– Act out a book complete with make shift costumes.

– Host a Karaokee night.

– Have a Nerf gun Showdown.

– See how many Balloons it takes to lift off the ground. Then watch the movie “Deckchair Danny”.

– Put on a Shadow Theater show.

– Simply your life and home. Throw out the excess. Ask yourself do I really need this? Why do I have it? Is it in the way? Allow your home to feel like the vacation resort you always wanted to visit.

– Learn something new.

– Go to a concert

– Go on a ‘first’ date with your significant other.

– Take a “I feel good day” off of work, if you can.

– Check the Entertainment section of the newspaper or a local website to see what is happening in your town.

– Celebrate a holiday or an achievement.

– Stay up until 4 AM devouring a good book or chatting with an old friend.

– Plan a picnic

– Play a game of volleyball or basketball with friends and/or family

– Go to the lake

– Rent a houseboat.

– Host a game night.

– Play Frisbee.

– Go to a public sporting event.

– Play a sport.

– Date night at the arcade.

– Have a scavenger hunt.

– Make a home movie.

– Build a rocket or model car.

– Find a new hobby.

– Learn about Geo Caching

– Let the kids jump in the rain puddles

– Most important loosen up and lighten up. Don’t be negative. Be willing to come out of the comfort shell once in a while. Laugh a little more. Smile a lot more. Look for the joy or “Glad” in everything around you.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Prep: 10 min., drugs Chill: 30 min., visit this site Grill: 22 min., Stand: 5 min. Sweet orange marmalade is slightly less bitter than traditional orange marmalade. Either works fine in this recipe. If your chops are thinner than ours, reduce the grilling time.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Other: 35 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Ingredients

* 4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 2 teaspoons soy sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade
* 1/2 cup bottled barbecue sauce
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

Preparation

Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jack Daniel’s Original No. 7 Barbecue Recipe Grilling Sauce.

hobbies_magazine_j_e_standley_cover

Photo: Hobbies Magazine February-March 1919 issue, help cover by J.E. Standley

Several years ago a friend of mine started a Yahoo Group for local moms comprised of her friends, try our friends and their friends as a way to share news quickly without having to call everyone. We post upcoming events, drugs deals for the local restaurants, coupons for the grocery store, items we are looking to get rid of or looking for and parenting woes and advice, among other things. Occasionally my friend will pose a question to start a discussion. The first question asked us to list some of our hobbies and projects we are working on. Before children I had hobbies. I am sure of it. Sadly they were placed by the wayside and over time forgotten. This actually is not a bad thing. It is part of growing up. With each stage of life come new and exciting ideas that we can look forward to. Otherwise we would all be playing with barbies and GI-Joe figures at age 36. However if you have young children you are probably doing just that.

This month’s resolution is all about finding a hobby that is fun, yet challenging. My goal for this month was to finally sign up for fencing classes. For years I have had a secret desire to learn fencing. Just when I was about to sign up for classes we uprooted our family and moved to another city that does not offer any classes. Now I am left trying to figure out another alternative.

A hobby should be something you want to do. It should be relaxing never forced; although sometimes our children need a little push to motivate them in the right direction until they find something suitable. A hobby should be all about the passion. If you are doing it because everyone else is doing it or because you have to then it becomes a chore not a hobby. Here is the exception to the rule. I love to read. Recently I found a group of women in my area who share a passion for literature. Each month someone chooses a book from a long list of classic literature. The following month we meet for breakfast to discuss the novel and how it relates to us in our time. The experience has been exhilarating. Most of the books are not books I normally would have picked up to read. Yes at times, when I would rather be reading something else less complicated, it feels like a chore; however, the goal of enriching my life through beautiful literature and then connecting with other moms is the hobby. Studies have found that when we are genuinely engaged in an activity we find interesting we fuel our self-esteem and life becomes more exciting. After my first book club meeting I felt alive. Invigorated. I was inspired.

In a society such as we live in the term hobby is often viewed as juvenile. The truth is we all need enriching experiences to help us stay centered and live a more balanced life. We all want success in some form. We all want to give our best to our bosses, families and friends. However, it is impossible to maintain such high demands of ourselves without causing a negative impact on our health and well being. When we allow ourselves to become tired and drained from work or overloaded with obligations our ability to innovate drops significantly. Our failure pushes us to work even harder. We feel guilty. We feel frustrated. Ultimately we feel defeated. Hobbies help relieve the stress resulting in a happier you.

A hobby is a fantastic way to blow off steam from a stressful workweek. A friend of mine could not wait until Saturday morning to hop on his bike and ride for 3 hours to distress. Hobbies such as collecting books, stamps and maps have a historical educational value. Tinkering hobbies like building trains, models, rockets and cars can build career oriented talents. Active hobbies like hiking, running and sports invigorate us. Moreover, hobbies can enhance our creative minds and help us think more clearly. I always seem to find my best inspirations while I am running or working on a project.

Sometimes we may feel guilty selfishly setting alone time aside for our personal hobbies. The truth is our hobbies can have a lasting impact on the children who learn from watching us. When they see mom and dad happily working on a hobby they are more likely to engage in a hobby themselves. They may copy what their parents are doing or adopt something of their own. Learning to manage their free time at an early age will benefit them when they are older. As parents we can help them discover enjoyable activities together. I love camping and hiking. I am passionate about camping and hiking. However it is no longer the relaxing hobby I enjoyed when I was a single college student or newly married. With our three little ones it is no easy feat. Yet, we continue to put on a brave face and take our kids hiking to give them rich fulfilling experiences. Hobbies shared with parents create lasting bonds. These activities such as sports, running, music, camping, cooking, fishing among others continue to hold value after the children have grown and move off to college. Children are also less likely to turn to drugs or exhibit bad behaviors when they are older if they are pursuing fun interesting hobbies to keep them busy. Who knows maybe the little boy that was into building rockets will grow up to become a rock scientist.

Choose a hobby from the following list or log onto DiscoverAHobby.com for a more comprehensive list of ideas. Local colleges, home and garden depots and craft shops offer all sorts of classes for a minimal fee. Contact a small mom and pop shop or ranch to see if they would be interested in training an apprentice for free or ask a friend to teach you.

  • Start a singing group. Gather some of your friends and their friends to meet once a month to sing together. Or join a community theater or adult choir in your area. Music has powerful effects over the mind.
  • Schedule periodic camping and hiking trips with your spouse or friends. It is always a treat to get away with gals or buddies.
  • Start a running or walking group.
  • Learn taekwondo, (some dojos offer family classes on the weekend) boxing, biking, fencing, dance, archery, rock climbing, yoga, weight lifting.
  • Gather some friends every Saturday morning to play volleyball, soccer, basketball, rugby, horseback riding, basketball, baseball.
  • Learn to Kayak, canoe, fish, scuba diving, wilderness camping, hiking.
  • Learn to scrapbook photos.
  • Build models, carpentry work, Gardening, car mechanics, basic home repairs.
  • Collect stamps, antiques, maps, wooden boxes, baskets, toys, pictures, books, coins, cars, art.
  • Learn about home theaters.
  • Complete a Puzzle.
  • Tour historical sites and museums.
  • Learn a foreign language.
  • Take an arts and crafts class in quilting, sewing, flower arrangements, photography, painting, pottery, wood carving, knitting, stained glass, interior design, jewelry, welding.
  • Study a musical instrument such as the guitar, piano, cello, violin, brass or woodwind instruments, organ, mandolin, lire, drums, voice.
  • Take up journaling, writing, poetry.
  • Join a book club or start one of your own.
  • Take a cooking class or start a cooking club..
  • Learn CPR, first aide.

dancing-in-the-rain

Photo: Dancing in the Rain, visit this site courtesy of Photo Bucket

Someone once told me they were leery of overly happy people because they must be hiding something. I think that there are individuals out there who are genuinely happy. The faults of life roll off their backs like RainX on a car windshield. On the opposite side of the glass half-full crowd are those who need to wallow in self-pity. They feel robbed of their liberties if their feelings are not validated. They feel they are  fake if they act contrary to how they feel. If they do not feel happy then why should they be happy? Problem is when they are not happy they feel no one should be happy. Thus we are all made to feel miserable with them.

One day I was listening to a radio talk show. The caller expressed the need to be true to her feelings but longed to be happy like her fiancé. Even so, seek she found it difficult to “fake” being nice if she did not feel like being nice. Her question was if she woke up on the wrong side of the bed was it ok to fake being happy? The host told her if that is what she needed to do then yes it is ok because it is never ok to lash out at someone. The host then added that sometimes when we try to be happy by smiling and doing nice things for other people eventually we become happy.

Not long ago I received terrible news that a dear friend of mine had succumb to liver cancer. She discovered that she had cancer only three months prior to her death. Donna was in her late 50’s. Her life had been fraught with peril at every turn. She was abused and abandoned most of her existence. She was strong. She was a fighter. She survived every negative confrontation thrown at her. By the time we met in my late twenties she was no longer the victim. Her rosy cheeks and denim overalls said everything about her character. She was soft spoken and kind. She would give the shirt off her back to help someone. She was genuine; always a pleasure to be around. She always had a kind word to say on both good and bad days. I loved being around Donna  because she was fun.

As the month progressed I learned of the severe personal tumults suffered by several of my dearest friends. I realized  that day there are more people than we realize who have or are  suffering in some form or another. Despite their afflictions, they strive to keep their heads high making the most of what they have. They have dealt with the past. They are moving on. Their lives are not perfect. They are battle worn and scared. Nevertheless, they are striving to make their lives and those around them better. These women are some of the most noble people I have had the pleasure of befriending. Most importantly despite their hardships they are permitting themselves to have fun and enjoy the pleasures of life.

boat by Dapixara

Photo: Red Boat, by Dapixara

When I was a young girl I loved the movie Pollyanna starring Haley Mills. Pollyanna is a vibrant 11 year old girl. Upon her father’s untimely death she was shipped off to live with her Aunt Polly. The daughter of a Missionary Minister, Pollyanna did without the finer things in life. Her only belongings came from missionary barrels or donations. As it so happens, one summer she begged her father for a doll. The ‘Ladies Aid’ tried to find one but all they received by the time the barrel needed to be sent off was a set of crutches. Pollyanna’s father seeing her terrible sadness came up with an idea. He asked her to find something glad about the situation. When she could not he told her she could be glad that she does not have to use the crutches. From that time forward she and her father played what they called the “Glad Game”. Pollyanna set about changing the hearts of everyone around her including her sour-hearted Aunt Polly. One passage I greatly enjoyed, reading in the novel written by Eleanor H. Porter, occurred shortly after her arrival. Miss Polly had just given Pollyanna her daily schedule consisting of cleaning her room first thing in the morning after which she should read 30 minutes aloud to Miss Polly followed by cooking lessons. In the late afternoon Pollyanna was expected to practice the piano. Pollyanna asked “what about living?” When was she supposed to live when her time was taken up with all these extra activities? She lamented that she did not want to just breathe she wanted to live. And so she did. Her Aunt Polly was surprised at the numerous acquaintances Pollyanna had made and the impact Pollyanna made in their lives. The Aunt Polly was so moved by the town’s love for Pollyanna that her own heart softened so much so that she became susceptible to love and forgiveness. The glad game is not that simple. You must find something to be glad about on all occasions. Learning to look on the brighter side of life enabled Pollyanna to step out without fear of condemnation. People loved her because she was so much fun to be with. She could be friends with even the grouchiest of souls because life held no bounds.

This month’s resolution is to have fun. I made this list in the beginning of the year. When July neared I was unsure of what exactly Fun meant. The word Fun is defined as something that provides enjoyment or amusement. I think fun means being able to lighten up despite our circumstances. Miss Polly caved into and was trapped by embarrassment for 11 to 15 years. Her fears lead her down a lonesome unemotional path. Pollyanna gently guided her away from tight buns, dark clothing and pursed lips and back into a world full of color, friendships and joy. Fun for some may include dancing on the bar top but I am not talking about temporary self-satisfaction. Remember the New Year’s resolution’s purpose is to enlighten us and make us better friends, neighbors and relatives. Some activities are better left in the ignorance of youth. The fun I speak of entails allowing ourselves the freedom to stop and enjoy life. Put the electronics away. Forgive whom you need to. Find the glad in your most heart-breaking sorrows as difficult as it may be. To have fun is to help others find the glad so that they too can have fun. To have fun is to vow even though we wake up disgruntled we can make the choice to fake being glad if we have to. To have fun is to discover why everyone calls you the “party-pooper” or “no fun” and change it.

Nuns Having Fun by Maureen Kelly and Jeffrey Stone

Photo: Nuns Having Fun

I try to teach my children it is ok to feel hurt, angry, sad, disappointed they are all legitimate feelings. But, we make the choice to let those feelings dictate our behavior and attitude or to let it go. It is not easy trying to tell that to a five year old who demands justice even to the point of missing out on the fun that is happening at that moment. I know there is more injustice going on in the world than we can fathom. There are people out there who are suffering or have suffered tremendous acts of violence, abuse and emotional warfare. Yet, day after day they keep moving forward. The writer Erma Bombeck wrote a column, upon discovering that she was dying from cancer, entitled “If I Had to Live My Life Over.” Erma wrote, “… I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage. I would have talked less and listened more. I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained, or the sofa faded. I would have eaten the popcorn in the ‘good’ living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace. … I would have sat on the lawn with my kids, even if it meant grass stains.” During the month of July I hope to use up the bottle of perfume sitting in the vanity drawer. I want to view my new home as a vacation rental. I want to find more of the glad, relax and have fun.

This is a short but fairly long list on how to have fun. The possibilities are practically endless. My hope is maybe something on the list will spawn additional fun ideas. Please feel free to share your FUN in the comments section.

Each day write down 3-5 positive things that happened that day.

Learn to have fun playing the glad game.

– Watch the clouds

– Watch a sun rise

– Take a midnight swim

– Observe bugs

– Pick flowers

– Camping

– Build a fort

– Take a treat or a balloon to friends and family.

– Read a book and come up with a project or something fun to do based on the material.

– Call the girls or take your daughter(s) to go get pedicures.

– Go on a leisurely bike ride with friends.

– Host a mystery dinner.

– Have an unbirthday party.

– Pay for the person behind you at the movies or toll booth.

– Act out a book complete with make shift costumes.

– Host a Karaokee night.

– Have a Nerf gun Showdown.

– See how many Balloons it takes to lift off the ground. Then watch the movie “Deckchair Danny”.

– Put on a Shadow Theater show.

– Simply your life and home. Throw out the excess. Ask yourself do I really need this? Why do I have it? Is it in the way? Allow your home to feel like the vacation resort you always wanted to visit.

– Learn something new.

– Go to a concert

– Go on a ‘first’ date with your significant other.

– Take a “I feel good day” off of work, if you can.

– Check the Entertainment section of the newspaper or a local website to see what is happening in your town.

– Celebrate a holiday or an achievement.

– Stay up until 4 AM devouring a good book or chatting with an old friend.

– Plan a picnic

– Play a game of volleyball or basketball with friends and/or family

– Go to the lake

– Rent a houseboat.

– Host a game night.

– Play Frisbee.

– Go to a public sporting event.

– Play a sport.

– Date night at the arcade.

– Have a scavenger hunt.

– Make a home movie.

– Build a rocket or model car.

– Find a new hobby.

– Learn about Geo Caching

– Let the kids jump in the rain puddles

– Most important loosen up and lighten up. Don’t be negative. Be willing to come out of the comfort shell once in a while. Laugh a little more. Smile a lot more. Look for the joy or “Glad” in everything around you.
I have much to be thankful for this season. Sure my life is not perfect by any means nor is it how I envisioned it would be; yet, generic I am happily content. It took a recent email from my sister to allow me pause to contemplate my happiness. She was emotional upon waking up from a vivid dream about me. You know the kind when you are confused all morning because you are not sure it was real or not? She so desperately needed to know I was well and happy. I guess I had been so busy I never took the time to assess my happiness. The single instant that my brain processed the words I was afforded a glimpse inward. Smiling, buy I concluded that yes I was indeed content.

This past year I spent each month working on a new goal. Through these monthly resolutions I have learned to laugh more, have fun, love more, create and give. What I discovered is that these traits ultimately lead to the one necessary tool needed to resolve our emotional inner battles and those of the individuals we care for. Gratitude. Gratitude above all else is being appreciative of what we have no matter how dull or small. Gratitude is not dwelling on what we do not have.

One night many long years ago I was flying home after a long absence. The sky was a light with lightening. I felt so much joy in that menial experience because watching the lightening over the ocean water back home was one of my favorite past times. Seeing the lightening in the sky in the dark hours of the early morning gave me comfort on my journey home. An anonymous person once said to always keep your eyes open because you do not want to miss anything. His quote was directed at up and coming fashion editors but I think it goes quite well with the ancient proverb that reminds us to “take time to stop and smell the roses.”

Lawrence J. Cohen author of Playful Parenting writes that “Play is one of the best ways to engage with children, pulling them out of emotional shutdown or misbehavior, to a place of connection and confidence.” He goes on to say that, “When we feel exhausted or when we are at the end of our rope, we tend to think that play will be just more of an energy drain. But when we engage playfully with our children, we find that suddenly we do have energy, both for fun and for finding creative solutions to thorny problems.”
Cohen affirms that yes indeed it is difficult for some of us to remember how to play. Sitting on the floor playing Barbies or watching clouds or playing games with our teens might seem boring. Yet, it is necessary for us as parents to explore that world with them not only for their benefit but for ours as well. Play gives us the opportunity to let go of our problems for a spell. Play strengthens relationships and restores harmony. We learn to laugh over spilled milk. Moreover, we come to recognize the simple pleasures of life.

Gratitude is also cultivated through thoughtful acts of service. In serving and allowing others to succor our needs we foster a love for our family and neighbors. We learn to be sensitive of their interests and in so doing we desire to forgo our wants in favor of their happiness. Suddenly, as Mr. Cohen stressed, we find the answers to problems. We feel we can breathe again. We are more forgiving of ourselves and those around us. We can accept the challenging experiences we had to go through even to the point of forgiving those who have offended us in the process. Walks with a friend are not only invigorating to the body but also can be a conduit for healing the mind. This time out clears our minds allowing us to see that we have more to be grateful for than we realized. Even though life is difficult there is still so much to be grateful for if we tune our minds to find it.

To truly develop gratitude we must learn to appreciate the negative aspects of life. Learning to triumph over adversity no matter how awful is one of the most difficult tasks we can undertake. We can accomplish this only through the quality of gratitude. Gratitude is the ability to see hope in our darkest hour. Finding gratitude when we feel we are trapped or lost in a thickening fog of turmoil is by far the most challenging. Moreover, if we can begin to recognize the good that is around us no matter how small or trivial we will have a tangible life preserver to carry us through the tumultuous waters.

In the story “Pollyanna” written by Louise Alcott, Pollyanna taught an entire town that for every misfortune there is always something to be glad about. Individuals whom had completely given up on life were renewed after attempting to play Pollyanna’s “Glad Game.” The game is not an easy one to play especially when grave tragedy strikes. Even little Miss Pollyanna was unable to think of a solitary thing to be glad about after learning she might never walk again. Ironically it was the very people in the community whom she inspired with small acts of kindness that lead her through her darkest hours. Placing blame on another will not erase our pain nor will it bring us happiness. Emotional healing is a necessity required by all human beings. It is a natural instinct to retreat or lash out at others when we feel scared, overwhelmed or abandoned. This recklessness or isolation is the direct result of an emotional shutdown. The only way to ease the loss of a loved one, or find strength when diagnosed with a serious medical condition, or recover from a series of bad choices, and misfortunes is to reach out to others in service.

This lesson is best illustrated in the book “Messenger” the third book in the Giver trilogy by Lois Lowry. There is a small village inhabited by those whom were cast out from their homes because they were lame and no longer of any use. Here they found peace and kindness until one day a man came to join them who could grant wishes. Many of the villagers became greedy and selfish. They were willing to do anything to look more handsome or get a material item. The woods that for so long gave them nourishment now turned on them sucking in the negative energy that energized the community. They were no longer grateful for what they had. They wanted more and would hurt anyone who got in their way. Gratitude gives us permission to let go, to laugh more freely and play harder. In cultivating gratitude we come to understand that material objects or pride have no place in our hearts. We are free to love others more deeply.

Thanksgiving is soon at hand. It is a time to reflect over the past year. I confess that under the duress of the challenges I have encountered this year I have whined just a smidgen. There are two people in my life whom I owe a debt of gratitude. This year I came to better understand my oldest son. The road we had to take to get here was filled with many pot holes. At the same time we have been fortunate to meet numerous families with similar plights such as our own. We have felt enormous support as we’ve banned together to help our children grow to succeed rather than adapt to coping through life. Their friendship coupled with the joy I see within my own son brings me immeasurable elation. I am thankful for the long road we had to travel. My contentment is a direct result from the relationships we have developed.

This month’s resolution is to express gratitude.

— Send thank you notes to the people who made the biggest impact on your life during the year.

— Remember to say thank you.

— Offer anonymous acts of service.

— Forgive and make amends.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat something you’ve never had before.
16. Call or meet with someone in your family and ask them a question you are curious about regarding your family’s history.
17. Learn how to do something new today. Your time limit: 30 minutes.
18. Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.
19. Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.
20. Right an old wrong.
21. Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.
22. Do something to make the world a better place.
23. Take a picture of the most childlike spot in town.
24. Figure out a way to add some color to your day in a new, more about unusual, cheap or wacky way.
25. Talk in a phony voice or accent to a complete stranger.
26. Open to a random page in the dictionary and look at the first word on the upper left-hand side. Keep turning pages until you find a word you don’t know. See how many times you can use this new word in a sentence today.
27. Take a routine you do everyday and put a childlike spin on it.
28. Buy something that captures the spirit of childhood for under $5.00 (including tax).
29. Ask an expert something you are curious about in his/her field.
30. Figure out a way to bring some fun into a dreaded task today.
31. Find a place to sit quietly for ten minutes. Listen for at least one sound that you would not have normally noticed.
32. Do something that will get you to laugh out-loud (one that puts you in danger of peeing your pants a little bit).
33. For no reason at all treat yourself to something out of the ordinary.
34. Think about some of the things you liked to do as a child. Pick one and do it.
35. Do something to make the day of a child.
36. Accessorize your wardrobe today with a touch of childhood.
37. Eat or drink something today that brings back childhood memories.
38. Make someone a homemade gift to show how much you care about him/her or to thank him/her for a job well done.
39. Play a practical joke on someone.
40. Congratulations on making it to the end. Your final test is to take tomorrow off. Spend today making any necessary adjustments. Do anything you want, but no work and no chores. Consider it a sick day or at least a “sick of it” day. (Remember, Adultitis is a serious affliction.)

I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad and baked sweet potato.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, tadalafil the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Serve with a garden salad

Source: Adapted from Southern Living Mag.
4 Pork Chops (1 1/4 inch thickness)
1/2 cup cranberry juice
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup apricot jam
1/2 bottle BBQ sauce
Orange slices

Combine the cranberry juice, soy sauce and red pepper in a large zip-lock bag or container with a lid. Pierce chops several times then place in the marinade. Allow to sit at least 30 minutes.

Heat grill to 350 – 400 or oven to 375 degrees. Combine apricot jam and BBQ sauce. Remove chops from marinade. Discard marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of BBQ mixture mixture.

Grill 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*grill boneless pork loin chops 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Variations:
— Replace cranberry juice with 1/2 cup orange juice.
— Replace apricot jam with 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade.
I had some pork chops I did not know what to do with. With a few searches on the net I came across a recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Oranges. I did not have any orange juice (that stuff never lasts in this house) or marmalade. I did however have cranberry juice and apricot jam. At the last minute I discovered the oranges were eaten. No worries, prostate the oranges are mostly for presentation.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Prep: 10 min., drugs Chill: 30 min., visit this site Grill: 22 min., Stand: 5 min. Sweet orange marmalade is slightly less bitter than traditional orange marmalade. Either works fine in this recipe. If your chops are thinner than ours, reduce the grilling time.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Other: 35 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Ingredients

* 4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 2 teaspoons soy sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup sweet orange marmalade
* 1/2 cup bottled barbecue sauce
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

Preparation

Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jack Daniel’s Original No. 7 Barbecue Recipe Grilling Sauce.

hobbies_magazine_j_e_standley_cover

Photo: Hobbies Magazine February-March 1919 issue, help cover by J.E. Standley

Several years ago a friend of mine started a Yahoo Group for local moms comprised of her friends, try our friends and their friends as a way to share news quickly without having to call everyone. We post upcoming events, drugs deals for the local restaurants, coupons for the grocery store, items we are looking to get rid of or looking for and parenting woes and advice, among other things. Occasionally my friend will pose a question to start a discussion. The first question asked us to list some of our hobbies and projects we are working on. Before children I had hobbies. I am sure of it. Sadly they were placed by the wayside and over time forgotten. This actually is not a bad thing. It is part of growing up. With each stage of life come new and exciting ideas that we can look forward to. Otherwise we would all be playing with barbies and GI-Joe figures at age 36. However if you have young children you are probably doing just that.

This month’s resolution is all about finding a hobby that is fun, yet challenging. My goal for this month was to finally sign up for fencing classes. For years I have had a secret desire to learn fencing. Just when I was about to sign up for classes we uprooted our family and moved to another city that does not offer any classes. Now I am left trying to figure out another alternative.

A hobby should be something you want to do. It should be relaxing never forced; although sometimes our children need a little push to motivate them in the right direction until they find something suitable. A hobby should be all about the passion. If you are doing it because everyone else is doing it or because you have to then it becomes a chore not a hobby. Here is the exception to the rule. I love to read. Recently I found a group of women in my area who share a passion for literature. Each month someone chooses a book from a long list of classic literature. The following month we meet for breakfast to discuss the novel and how it relates to us in our time. The experience has been exhilarating. Most of the books are not books I normally would have picked up to read. Yes at times, when I would rather be reading something else less complicated, it feels like a chore; however, the goal of enriching my life through beautiful literature and then connecting with other moms is the hobby. Studies have found that when we are genuinely engaged in an activity we find interesting we fuel our self-esteem and life becomes more exciting. After my first book club meeting I felt alive. Invigorated. I was inspired.

In a society such as we live in the term hobby is often viewed as juvenile. The truth is we all need enriching experiences to help us stay centered and live a more balanced life. We all want success in some form. We all want to give our best to our bosses, families and friends. However, it is impossible to maintain such high demands of ourselves without causing a negative impact on our health and well being. When we allow ourselves to become tired and drained from work or overloaded with obligations our ability to innovate drops significantly. Our failure pushes us to work even harder. We feel guilty. We feel frustrated. Ultimately we feel defeated. Hobbies help relieve the stress resulting in a happier you.

A hobby is a fantastic way to blow off steam from a stressful workweek. A friend of mine could not wait until Saturday morning to hop on his bike and ride for 3 hours to distress. Hobbies such as collecting books, stamps and maps have a historical educational value. Tinkering hobbies like building trains, models, rockets and cars can build career oriented talents. Active hobbies like hiking, running and sports invigorate us. Moreover, hobbies can enhance our creative minds and help us think more clearly. I always seem to find my best inspirations while I am running or working on a project.

Sometimes we may feel guilty selfishly setting alone time aside for our personal hobbies. The truth is our hobbies can have a lasting impact on the children who learn from watching us. When they see mom and dad happily working on a hobby they are more likely to engage in a hobby themselves. They may copy what their parents are doing or adopt something of their own. Learning to manage their free time at an early age will benefit them when they are older. As parents we can help them discover enjoyable activities together. I love camping and hiking. I am passionate about camping and hiking. However it is no longer the relaxing hobby I enjoyed when I was a single college student or newly married. With our three little ones it is no easy feat. Yet, we continue to put on a brave face and take our kids hiking to give them rich fulfilling experiences. Hobbies shared with parents create lasting bonds. These activities such as sports, running, music, camping, cooking, fishing among others continue to hold value after the children have grown and move off to college. Children are also less likely to turn to drugs or exhibit bad behaviors when they are older if they are pursuing fun interesting hobbies to keep them busy. Who knows maybe the little boy that was into building rockets will grow up to become a rock scientist.

Choose a hobby from the following list or log onto DiscoverAHobby.com for a more comprehensive list of ideas. Local colleges, home and garden depots and craft shops offer all sorts of classes for a minimal fee. Contact a small mom and pop shop or ranch to see if they would be interested in training an apprentice for free or ask a friend to teach you.

  • Start a singing group. Gather some of your friends and their friends to meet once a month to sing together. Or join a community theater or adult choir in your area. Music has powerful effects over the mind.
  • Schedule periodic camping and hiking trips with your spouse or friends. It is always a treat to get away with gals or buddies.
  • Start a running or walking group.
  • Learn taekwondo, (some dojos offer family classes on the weekend) boxing, biking, fencing, dance, archery, rock climbing, yoga, weight lifting.
  • Gather some friends every Saturday morning to play volleyball, soccer, basketball, rugby, horseback riding, basketball, baseball.
  • Learn to Kayak, canoe, fish, scuba diving, wilderness camping, hiking.
  • Learn to scrapbook photos.
  • Build models, carpentry work, Gardening, car mechanics, basic home repairs.
  • Collect stamps, antiques, maps, wooden boxes, baskets, toys, pictures, books, coins, cars, art.
  • Learn about home theaters.
  • Complete a Puzzle.
  • Tour historical sites and museums.
  • Learn a foreign language.
  • Take an arts and crafts class in quilting, sewing, flower arrangements, photography, painting, pottery, wood carving, knitting, stained glass, interior design, jewelry, welding.
  • Study a musical instrument such as the guitar, piano, cello, violin, brass or woodwind instruments, organ, mandolin, lire, drums, voice.
  • Take up journaling, writing, poetry.
  • Join a book club or start one of your own.
  • Take a cooking class or start a cooking club..
  • Learn CPR, first aide.

dancing-in-the-rain

Photo: Dancing in the Rain, visit this site courtesy of Photo Bucket

Someone once told me they were leery of overly happy people because they must be hiding something. I think that there are individuals out there who are genuinely happy. The faults of life roll off their backs like RainX on a car windshield. On the opposite side of the glass half-full crowd are those who need to wallow in self-pity. They feel robbed of their liberties if their feelings are not validated. They feel they are  fake if they act contrary to how they feel. If they do not feel happy then why should they be happy? Problem is when they are not happy they feel no one should be happy. Thus we are all made to feel miserable with them.

One day I was listening to a radio talk show. The caller expressed the need to be true to her feelings but longed to be happy like her fiancé. Even so, seek she found it difficult to “fake” being nice if she did not feel like being nice. Her question was if she woke up on the wrong side of the bed was it ok to fake being happy? The host told her if that is what she needed to do then yes it is ok because it is never ok to lash out at someone. The host then added that sometimes when we try to be happy by smiling and doing nice things for other people eventually we become happy.

Not long ago I received terrible news that a dear friend of mine had succumb to liver cancer. She discovered that she had cancer only three months prior to her death. Donna was in her late 50’s. Her life had been fraught with peril at every turn. She was abused and abandoned most of her existence. She was strong. She was a fighter. She survived every negative confrontation thrown at her. By the time we met in my late twenties she was no longer the victim. Her rosy cheeks and denim overalls said everything about her character. She was soft spoken and kind. She would give the shirt off her back to help someone. She was genuine; always a pleasure to be around. She always had a kind word to say on both good and bad days. I loved being around Donna  because she was fun.

As the month progressed I learned of the severe personal tumults suffered by several of my dearest friends. I realized  that day there are more people than we realize who have or are  suffering in some form or another. Despite their afflictions, they strive to keep their heads high making the most of what they have. They have dealt with the past. They are moving on. Their lives are not perfect. They are battle worn and scared. Nevertheless, they are striving to make their lives and those around them better. These women are some of the most noble people I have had the pleasure of befriending. Most importantly despite their hardships they are permitting themselves to have fun and enjoy the pleasures of life.

boat by Dapixara

Photo: Red Boat, by Dapixara

When I was a young girl I loved the movie Pollyanna starring Haley Mills. Pollyanna is a vibrant 11 year old girl. Upon her father’s untimely death she was shipped off to live with her Aunt Polly. The daughter of a Missionary Minister, Pollyanna did without the finer things in life. Her only belongings came from missionary barrels or donations. As it so happens, one summer she begged her father for a doll. The ‘Ladies Aid’ tried to find one but all they received by the time the barrel needed to be sent off was a set of crutches. Pollyanna’s father seeing her terrible sadness came up with an idea. He asked her to find something glad about the situation. When she could not he told her she could be glad that she does not have to use the crutches. From that time forward she and her father played what they called the “Glad Game”. Pollyanna set about changing the hearts of everyone around her including her sour-hearted Aunt Polly. One passage I greatly enjoyed, reading in the novel written by Eleanor H. Porter, occurred shortly after her arrival. Miss Polly had just given Pollyanna her daily schedule consisting of cleaning her room first thing in the morning after which she should read 30 minutes aloud to Miss Polly followed by cooking lessons. In the late afternoon Pollyanna was expected to practice the piano. Pollyanna asked “what about living?” When was she supposed to live when her time was taken up with all these extra activities? She lamented that she did not want to just breathe she wanted to live. And so she did. Her Aunt Polly was surprised at the numerous acquaintances Pollyanna had made and the impact Pollyanna made in their lives. The Aunt Polly was so moved by the town’s love for Pollyanna that her own heart softened so much so that she became susceptible to love and forgiveness. The glad game is not that simple. You must find something to be glad about on all occasions. Learning to look on the brighter side of life enabled Pollyanna to step out without fear of condemnation. People loved her because she was so much fun to be with. She could be friends with even the grouchiest of souls because life held no bounds.

This month’s resolution is to have fun. I made this list in the beginning of the year. When July neared I was unsure of what exactly Fun meant. The word Fun is defined as something that provides enjoyment or amusement. I think fun means being able to lighten up despite our circumstances. Miss Polly caved into and was trapped by embarrassment for 11 to 15 years. Her fears lead her down a lonesome unemotional path. Pollyanna gently guided her away from tight buns, dark clothing and pursed lips and back into a world full of color, friendships and joy. Fun for some may include dancing on the bar top but I am not talking about temporary self-satisfaction. Remember the New Year’s resolution’s purpose is to enlighten us and make us better friends, neighbors and relatives. Some activities are better left in the ignorance of youth. The fun I speak of entails allowing ourselves the freedom to stop and enjoy life. Put the electronics away. Forgive whom you need to. Find the glad in your most heart-breaking sorrows as difficult as it may be. To have fun is to help others find the glad so that they too can have fun. To have fun is to vow even though we wake up disgruntled we can make the choice to fake being glad if we have to. To have fun is to discover why everyone calls you the “party-pooper” or “no fun” and change it.

Nuns Having Fun by Maureen Kelly and Jeffrey Stone

Photo: Nuns Having Fun

I try to teach my children it is ok to feel hurt, angry, sad, disappointed they are all legitimate feelings. But, we make the choice to let those feelings dictate our behavior and attitude or to let it go. It is not easy trying to tell that to a five year old who demands justice even to the point of missing out on the fun that is happening at that moment. I know there is more injustice going on in the world than we can fathom. There are people out there who are suffering or have suffered tremendous acts of violence, abuse and emotional warfare. Yet, day after day they keep moving forward. The writer Erma Bombeck wrote a column, upon discovering that she was dying from cancer, entitled “If I Had to Live My Life Over.” Erma wrote, “… I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage. I would have talked less and listened more. I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained, or the sofa faded. I would have eaten the popcorn in the ‘good’ living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace. … I would have sat on the lawn with my kids, even if it meant grass stains.” During the month of July I hope to use up the bottle of perfume sitting in the vanity drawer. I want to view my new home as a vacation rental. I want to find more of the glad, relax and have fun.

This is a short but fairly long list on how to have fun. The possibilities are practically endless. My hope is maybe something on the list will spawn additional fun ideas. Please feel free to share your FUN in the comments section.

Each day write down 3-5 positive things that happened that day.

Learn to have fun playing the glad game.

– Watch the clouds

– Watch a sun rise

– Take a midnight swim

– Observe bugs

– Pick flowers

– Camping

– Build a fort

– Take a treat or a balloon to friends and family.

– Read a book and come up with a project or something fun to do based on the material.

– Call the girls or take your daughter(s) to go get pedicures.

– Go on a leisurely bike ride with friends.

– Host a mystery dinner.

– Have an unbirthday party.

– Pay for the person behind you at the movies or toll booth.

– Act out a book complete with make shift costumes.

– Host a Karaokee night.

– Have a Nerf gun Showdown.

– See how many Balloons it takes to lift off the ground. Then watch the movie “Deckchair Danny”.

– Put on a Shadow Theater show.

– Simply your life and home. Throw out the excess. Ask yourself do I really need this? Why do I have it? Is it in the way? Allow your home to feel like the vacation resort you always wanted to visit.

– Learn something new.

– Go to a concert

– Go on a ‘first’ date with your significant other.

– Take a “I feel good day” off of work, if you can.

– Check the Entertainment section of the newspaper or a local website to see what is happening in your town.

– Celebrate a holiday or an achievement.

– Stay up until 4 AM devouring a good book or chatting with an old friend.

– Plan a picnic

– Play a game of volleyball or basketball with friends and/or family

– Go to the lake

– Rent a houseboat.

– Host a game night.

– Play Frisbee.

– Go to a public sporting event.

– Play a sport.

– Date night at the arcade.

– Have a scavenger hunt.

– Make a home movie.

– Build a rocket or model car.

– Find a new hobby.

– Learn about Geo Caching

– Let the kids jump in the rain puddles

– Most important loosen up and lighten up. Don’t be negative. Be willing to come out of the comfort shell once in a while. Laugh a little more. Smile a lot more. Look for the joy or “Glad” in everything around you.
I have much to be thankful for this season. Sure my life is not perfect by any means nor is it how I envisioned it would be; yet, generic I am happily content. It took a recent email from my sister to allow me pause to contemplate my happiness. She was emotional upon waking up from a vivid dream about me. You know the kind when you are confused all morning because you are not sure it was real or not? She so desperately needed to know I was well and happy. I guess I had been so busy I never took the time to assess my happiness. The single instant that my brain processed the words I was afforded a glimpse inward. Smiling, buy I concluded that yes I was indeed content.

This past year I spent each month working on a new goal. Through these monthly resolutions I have learned to laugh more, have fun, love more, create and give. What I discovered is that these traits ultimately lead to the one necessary tool needed to resolve our emotional inner battles and those of the individuals we care for. Gratitude. Gratitude above all else is being appreciative of what we have no matter how dull or small. Gratitude is not dwelling on what we do not have.

One night many long years ago I was flying home after a long absence. The sky was a light with lightening. I felt so much joy in that menial experience because watching the lightening over the ocean water back home was one of my favorite past times. Seeing the lightening in the sky in the dark hours of the early morning gave me comfort on my journey home. An anonymous person once said to always keep your eyes open because you do not want to miss anything. His quote was directed at up and coming fashion editors but I think it goes quite well with the ancient proverb that reminds us to “take time to stop and smell the roses.”

Lawrence J. Cohen author of Playful Parenting writes that “Play is one of the best ways to engage with children, pulling them out of emotional shutdown or misbehavior, to a place of connection and confidence.” He goes on to say that, “When we feel exhausted or when we are at the end of our rope, we tend to think that play will be just more of an energy drain. But when we engage playfully with our children, we find that suddenly we do have energy, both for fun and for finding creative solutions to thorny problems.”
Cohen affirms that yes indeed it is difficult for some of us to remember how to play. Sitting on the floor playing Barbies or watching clouds or playing games with our teens might seem boring. Yet, it is necessary for us as parents to explore that world with them not only for their benefit but for ours as well. Play gives us the opportunity to let go of our problems for a spell. Play strengthens relationships and restores harmony. We learn to laugh over spilled milk. Moreover, we come to recognize the simple pleasures of life.

Gratitude is also cultivated through thoughtful acts of service. In serving and allowing others to succor our needs we foster a love for our family and neighbors. We learn to be sensitive of their interests and in so doing we desire to forgo our wants in favor of their happiness. Suddenly, as Mr. Cohen stressed, we find the answers to problems. We feel we can breathe again. We are more forgiving of ourselves and those around us. We can accept the challenging experiences we had to go through even to the point of forgiving those who have offended us in the process. Walks with a friend are not only invigorating to the body but also can be a conduit for healing the mind. This time out clears our minds allowing us to see that we have more to be grateful for than we realized. Even though life is difficult there is still so much to be grateful for if we tune our minds to find it.

To truly develop gratitude we must learn to appreciate the negative aspects of life. Learning to triumph over adversity no matter how awful is one of the most difficult tasks we can undertake. We can accomplish this only through the quality of gratitude. Gratitude is the ability to see hope in our darkest hour. Finding gratitude when we feel we are trapped or lost in a thickening fog of turmoil is by far the most challenging. Moreover, if we can begin to recognize the good that is around us no matter how small or trivial we will have a tangible life preserver to carry us through the tumultuous waters.

In the story “Pollyanna” written by Louise Alcott, Pollyanna taught an entire town that for every misfortune there is always something to be glad about. Individuals whom had completely given up on life were renewed after attempting to play Pollyanna’s “Glad Game.” The game is not an easy one to play especially when grave tragedy strikes. Even little Miss Pollyanna was unable to think of a solitary thing to be glad about after learning she might never walk again. Ironically it was the very people in the community whom she inspired with small acts of kindness that lead her through her darkest hours. Placing blame on another will not erase our pain nor will it bring us happiness. Emotional healing is a necessity required by all human beings. It is a natural instinct to retreat or lash out at others when we feel scared, overwhelmed or abandoned. This recklessness or isolation is the direct result of an emotional shutdown. The only way to ease the loss of a loved one, or find strength when diagnosed with a serious medical condition, or recover from a series of bad choices, and misfortunes is to reach out to others in service.

This lesson is best illustrated in the book “Messenger” the third book in the Giver trilogy by Lois Lowry. There is a small village inhabited by those whom were cast out from their homes because they were lame and no longer of any use. Here they found peace and kindness until one day a man came to join them who could grant wishes. Many of the villagers became greedy and selfish. They were willing to do anything to look more handsome or get a material item. The woods that for so long gave them nourishment now turned on them sucking in the negative energy that energized the community. They were no longer grateful for what they had. They wanted more and would hurt anyone who got in their way. Gratitude gives us permission to let go, to laugh more freely and play harder. In cultivating gratitude we come to understand that material objects or pride have no place in our hearts. We are free to love others more deeply.

Thanksgiving is soon at hand. It is a time to reflect over the past year. I confess that under the duress of the challenges I have encountered this year I have whined just a smidgen. There are two people in my life whom I owe a debt of gratitude. This year I came to better understand my oldest son. The road we had to take to get here was filled with many pot holes. At the same time we have been fortunate to meet numerous families with similar plights such as our own. We have felt enormous support as we’ve banned together to help our children grow to succeed rather than adapt to coping through life. Their friendship coupled with the joy I see within my own son brings me immeasurable elation. I am thankful for the long road we had to travel. My contentment is a direct result from the relationships we have developed.

This month’s resolution is to express gratitude.

— Send thank you notes to the people who made the biggest impact on your life during the year.

— Remember to say thank you.

— Offer anonymous acts of service.

— Forgive and make amends.

Gratitude, healing is not only the greatest of virtues, and but the parent of all others. (Cicero)

I have much to be thankful for this season. Sure my life is not perfect by any means nor is it how I envisioned it would be; yet, I am happily content. It took a recent email from my sister to allow me pause to contemplate my happiness. She was emotional upon waking up from a vivid dream about me. You know the kind when you are confused all morning because you are not sure it was real or not? She so desperately needed to know I was well and happy. I guess I had been so busy I never took the time to assess my happiness. The single instant that my brain processed the words I was afforded a glimpse inward. Smiling, I concluded that yes I was indeed content.

This past year I spent each month working on a new goal. Through these monthly resolutions I have learned to laugh more, have fun, love more, create and give. What I discovered is that these traits ultimately lead to the one necessary tool needed to resolve our emotional inner battles and those of the individuals we care for. Gratitude. Gratitude above all else is being appreciative of what we have no matter how dull or small. Gratitude is not dwelling on what we do not have.

One night many long years ago I was flying home after a long absence. The sky was a light with lightening. I felt so much joy in that menial experience because watching the lightening over the ocean water back home was one of my favorite past times. Seeing the lightening in the sky in the dark hours of the early morning gave me comfort on my journey home. An anonymous person once said to always keep your eyes open because you do not want to miss anything. His quote was directed at up and coming fashion editors but I think it goes quite well with the ancient proverb that reminds us to “take time to stop and smell the roses.”

Lawrence J. Cohen author of Playful Parenting writes that “Play is one of the best ways to engage with children, pulling them out of emotional shutdown or misbehavior, to a place of connection and confidence.” He goes on to say that, “When we feel exhausted or when we are at the end of our rope, we tend to think that play will be just more of an energy drain. But when we engage playfully with our children, we find that suddenly we do have energy, both for fun and for finding creative solutions to thorny problems.”
Cohen affirms that yes indeed it is difficult for some of us to remember how to play. Sitting on the floor playing Barbies or watching clouds or playing games with our teens might seem boring. Yet, it is necessary for us as parents to explore that world with them not only for their benefit but for ours as well. Play gives us the opportunity to let go of our problems for a spell. Play strengthens relationships and restores harmony. We learn to laugh over spilled milk. Moreover, we come to recognize the simple pleasures of life.

Gratitude is also cultivated through thoughtful acts of service. In serving and allowing others to succor our needs we foster a love for our family and neighbors. We learn to be sensitive of their interests and in so doing we desire to forgo our wants in favor of their happiness. Suddenly, as Mr. Cohen stressed, we find the answers to problems. We feel we can breathe again. We are more forgiving of ourselves and those around us. We can accept the challenging experiences we had to go through even to the point of forgiving those who have offended us in the process. Walks with a friend are not only invigorating to the body but also can be a conduit for healing the mind. This time out clears our minds allowing us to see that we have more to be grateful for than we realized. Even though life is difficult there is still so much to be grateful for if we tune our minds to find it.

To truly develop gratitude we must learn to appreciate the negative aspects of life. Learning to triumph over adversity no matter how awful is one of the most difficult tasks we can undertake. We can accomplish this only through the quality of gratitude. Gratitude is the ability to see hope in our darkest hour. Finding gratitude when we feel we are trapped or lost in a thickening fog of turmoil is by far the most challenging. Moreover, if we can begin to recognize the good that is around us no matter how small or trivial we will have a tangible life preserver to carry us through the tumultuous waters.

In the story “Pollyanna” written by Louise Alcott, Pollyanna taught an entire town that for every misfortune there is always something to be glad about. Individuals whom had completely given up on life were renewed after attempting to play Pollyanna’s “Glad Game.” The game is not an easy one to play especially when grave tragedy strikes. Even little Miss Pollyanna was unable to think of a solitary thing to be glad about after learning she might never walk again. Ironically it was the very people in the community whom she inspired with small acts of kindness that lead her through her darkest hours. Placing blame on another will not erase our pain nor will it bring us happiness. Emotional healing is a necessity required by all human beings. It is a natural instinct to retreat or lash out at others when we feel scared, overwhelmed or abandoned. This recklessness or isolation is the direct result of an emotional shutdown. The only way to ease the loss of a loved one, or find strength when diagnosed with a serious medical condition, or recover from a series of bad choices, and misfortunes is to reach out to others in service.

This lesson is best illustrated in the book “Messenger” the third book in the Giver trilogy by Lois Lowry. There is a small village inhabited by those whom were cast out from their homes because they were lame and no longer of any use. Here they found peace and kindness until one day a man came to join them who could grant wishes. Many of the villagers became greedy and selfish. They were willing to do anything to look more handsome or get a material item. The woods that for so long gave them nourishment now turned on them sucking in the negative energy that energized the community. They were no longer grateful for what they had. They wanted more and would hurt anyone who got in their way. Gratitude gives us permission to let go, to laugh more freely and play harder. In cultivating gratitude we come to understand that material objects or pride have no place in our hearts. We are free to love others more deeply.

Thanksgiving is soon at hand. It is a time to reflect over the past year. I confess that under the duress of the challenges I have encountered this year I have whined just a smidgen. There are two people in my life whom I owe a debt of gratitude. This year I came to better understand my oldest son. The road we had to take to get here was filled with many pot holes. At the same time we have been fortunate to meet numerous families with similar plights such as our own. We have felt enormous support as we’ve banned together to help our children grow to succeed rather than adapt to coping through life. Their friendship coupled with the joy I see within my own son brings me immeasurable elation. I am thankful for the long road we had to travel. My contentment is a direct result from the relationships we have developed.

This month’s resolution is to express gratitude.

— Send thank you notes to the people who made the biggest impact on your life during the year.

— Remember to say thank you.

— Express your affections by saying I love you, I am proud of you, great job. “Feeling Gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” Annonymous

— Offer anonymous acts of service.

— Forgive and make amends.

— Keep a gratitude jar. Write down all the things you are thankful for on strips of paper. Place them in a jar to share on Thanksgiving or at dinner.
This months website review is on one of my three favorite go to craft sites: The Thrifty Crafter. The thrifty Crafter offers tantalizing recipes like Halibut and Chickpea Salad or a Sweetharts Sugar Cookies tutorial. You will also find fun zany projects and stylish elegant ideas. My favorite of all and the reason I came across The Thrifty Crater is the huge paper pom poms.

Hot Chocolate Maker

I found this site last summer. I started to write down the 40 day steps to end Adultitist. Got to number 20. Then got busy. Lost the name of the website because I forgot to save it. Periodically I would search the net but there are a ton of 40-day plans out there. Fortunately the Goddess of New Year Eve Resolutions smiled down upon us and favored me with a blessing to find the lost website just in time for January.

Last year I decided to make 12 monthly resolutions because it seemed more effective than just writing down a list of goals and hoping for the best. For one whole month I was dedicated to a goal. Some months I was more successful than others. The months I was a complete failure I know I did my best so it was not a complete loss. About mid summer I came to the conclusion that we needed a little more spice in our life. Having three active children close together was a little insane and the effect was “Adultistis”! We needed to find out inner child. Now that the kids are older and we are finally venturing out of the cave we need to learn to relax a bit.

1. Spend at least 15 minutes immersing yourself in a field you know nothing about.
2. Find a reason to celebrate and do something to celebrate it.
3. Do something that is typically seen as inappropriate for someone of your age.
4. Add something childlike (not necessarily childish) to your workspace or home.
5. Become a scientist. Conduct a silly experiment.
6. Write down one big dream of yours. Draw or find a picture to go with it and put it somewhere you will see it often.
7. Spend 15 – 30 minutes doing something you love that you don’t often have the chance to do.
8. Draw a funny picture and hide it in an unexpected place for someone else to find.
9. Do one thing today to support a cause or issue you really care about.
10. Create a memory today with someone you care about that will mean a lot ten years from now.
11. Do something your parents would never let you do as a child.
12. Write a letter to a childhood hero (real or fictional).
13. Spend ten minutes doing something outside that you have never done before.
14. Do something to help someone you don’t know.
15. Eat s