Angie Gets Organized

This is why I'm trying to get organized...for my family. I am a strong believer in family meal time, but I know that without a little planning, it will be hard to keep us all together. It will also be easier to spend money foolishly on prepared foods or fast food. I love trying out new recipes, so this is my site to pass on recipes, while also organizing them into a meal plan. I hope it helps you to keep your family together. I would love to hear what others are having for dinner, or see a new recipe or two! Feel free to leave me some feedback in the comments least then I would know someone is reading this!

It's not gourmet...just good food!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

November Menu

Is it really November already?? I can hardly believe it! But the beautiful trees and dropping leaves give it away. There is a nip in the morning air, even if we get tricked by afternoon sunshine and a warm Indian Summer. The kids are still high on Halloween candy, and I'm still letting them eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. (Hey, the sooner they eat it, the sooner it's sense fighting it.) But, now it's time for a new that doesn't include candied apples, but maybe some baked apples or apple pie for dessert instead! Let's take some time this month to ponder all the blessings that God has given us. We have warm places to live, yummy food to eat, and wonderful families and friends that surround us with love everyday. The Lord is truly GOOD to us!

"Give thanks to the LORD because He is good. His love continues forever." Psalms 136: 1

Nov. 1-6:

1. Hamburger Supper: I've posted this one before, so you should be able to find the recipe within the blog. It is a family favorite, kind of a quickie beef stew. It has hamburger, onion, potatoes, and carrots in a brown gravy. It is a one pot supper, which I love.
2. Spaghetti: This makes our family's menu at least once a month! We can't help it, it's easy, and we love it!
3. Honey BBQ Chicken Tenders (crockpot meal): This is a repeat post as well, check in the April recipes.
4. Chili over rice: I'm going to make this a one pot meal, cooking the rice right in the tomatoe-y broth.
5. Chicken Patties and Fries: Friday's are always my easy day. After cooking all week, who wants an involved meal?
6. Leftovers

Nov. 7-13:
7. Ham Slice and Fried Potatoes
8. Creamed Chicken and Biscuits: There are several variations on this one that you can find in cookbooks and online. I'm basically using canned soup, canned chicken, mixed veggies, and biscuits from the dairy isle. Sometimes you just have to keep it simple.
9. Steak Stew (crockpot): This is a fabulous way to make a cheap cut of meat very tender. It is basically a hearty vegetable soup.
10. Sausage, Potato, and Cheese Waffles: This is a new recipe that I will be trying. It is from Rachel Ray's magazine. It looked pretty good, like an all-in-one breakfast. Hopefully, it's not too complicated or more work than it's worth. We can try it together and rate it.
11. Shake and Bake Chicken Nuggets and Parmesan Noodles: The parmesan noodles are just the Lipton noodles in a pouch. I prefer to make my own chicken nuggets when possible because I know what's going in them. But as you can see from Nov. 5th, I do still serve store bought chicken on occasion.
12. Hot Roast Beef Sandwiches (Hardee's style): This is so easy and satisfies my hunger for fast food when I really need to stay at home. Pick up some roast beef from the deli, fry it in a skillet and serve it on toasted buns. If you really want to get "fancy" (ha ha) you can make some au juis (spelling??)--beef broth-- and make a steakhouse beef dip sandwich, like they make at Quiznos. Just add some melted cheese and dip the sandwich in the beef broth. Yummy!
13. Leftovers: you knew it was coming folks!

14. Taco Stuffed Shells: I've posted this recipe before. It is a Taste of Home recipe.
15. Hamburgers and Mac&Cheese
16. BBQ Chicken, potatoe cubes, corn, and cheese casserole: I'm making this one up, as I saw it in the frozen food isle. (I get a lot of inspiration there when I'm tempted to buy those expensive meal-in-a-bags). I figure I should be able to make this for a lot cheaper than buying it already prepared. I'm going to put my raw chicken chunks and potatoes in a casserole dish, mix it around with a little BBQ sauce, and add some corn. I'll bake it until almost done, and then add some cheddar cheese. We'll see how this one goes...sometimes I come up with a winner, and sometimes the kids say "NEVER MAKE THIS AGAIN! YUCK!".
17. Ham Loaf Meatballs with sauce: I use the ham loaf mix from Butcher Shoppe, as well as their recipe. But instead of a loaf this time (which is not Shane's favorite), I'm going to make the mix into meatballs and pour the sauce over top. The kids love this!
18. Pancakes and Eggs
19. Pizza Boats: Instead of making my own crust this time, I think I will make pizza out of the long french bread loaves that you buy at the store. You can usually buy 2 loaves for about $2.00 at Walmart, so it should be a pretty inexpensive supper.
20. Leftovers: again!

Nov. 21-27:
21. Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes: just your standard recipe
22. Creamy Chicken and Pasta: This is out of the Campbells cookbook. I will try to post as soon as possible.
23. Egg Rolls and Fried Rice: We LOVE to make our own egg rolls! They really aren't that hard, and again, it keeps us from going out to eat! This is another Taste of Home recipe.
24. Baked Italian Chicken: I've never tried this, but as I was planning the menu, my co-worker gave this idea to me. She said she marinates her chicken in Italian dressing for the day, then fries the chicken lightly on each side. She then transfers the chicken to a casserole dish and empties a can of Italian-seasoned diced tomatoes on top and finishes baking the chicken until cooked through. Sounded good to me!
25. Thanksgiving Dinner!!!! Bring on the turkey and stuffing!
26. Thanksgiving leftovers (I hope!). If not, we'll just do grilled cheese and tomato soup.
27. We'll finish the week with any other leftovers from the fridge.

Nov. 28-30
28. Pork Meatballs over Sauerkraut: This is a twist on the traditional pork roast. Just buy a package of ground pork, add breadcrumbs and an egg, and shape into meatballs. Brown quickly in a frying pan, then transfer to a crockpot (or regular stovetop pot) filled with sauerkraut. Cook until meatballs are done.
29. Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo: This is from the Campbell's cookbook. Will post the recipe later.
30. Beef Stew: not sure if I'll be doing this in the crockpot or on the stove. Either way, it is one of my favorite fall dishes.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Apple Cinnamon Pork Chops

I received this recipe from a friend in a cooking group. She said the recipe was originally designed to be a marinade, but we've basically turned it into a crockpot meal. It is delicious and wonderful in the fall.

Apple Cinnamon Pork Chops
4 thick porkchops or 6 thin porkchops
1 1/2 c. Italian dressing
4 cloves garlic
1 1/2 c. BBQ sauce
3-4 large apples (more or less to taste...depending on if you plan on eating the apples with the pork-which I recommend!, but the rest of my family doesn't do)
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
2 Tbsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. butter

Combine all ingredients in crockpot. Apples should be peeled and sliced. Cook on low 7-8 hours.

Old Fashioned Chicken Potpie

Usually I use the Southern Living Recipe for this dish, but a friend of mine gave me this recipe that calls for cream cheese in the crust. That one ingredient really changes the flavor, but in a good way. It adds a little zing to the crust. But if you do not like the flavor of cream cheese, you might want to stick to the Southern Living Recipe.

Amy's Old-Fashioned Chicken Pot Pie

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 1/4 c. flour
3/4 c. butter, softened

1. Mix the ingredients in a bowl until a smooth dough develops. Knead a few times. Separate the dough into two balls (one using 3/4 of the dough, and one using 1/4 of the dough). Roll the larger ball into a rectangle (or shape that will fit down sides and bottom of 8x8 sized casserole dish). Set the small ball of dough aside until filling is made.

3 Tbsp. butter
1/4 c. flour
2 c. chicken stock (preferably from cooking off a chicken) or 2 c. water seasoned with 3 Tbsp. chicken bouillon
2 c. frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
2 c. cooked chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
salt and pepper to taste
parsley to taste

1. Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add flour, stirring with a whisk until completely combined. Continue stirring a few minutes. Add chicken stock slowly, whisking to combine the butter/flour into the stock. Add the veggies and cook until tender. The stock will be thickened. Do not cook at too high of a temperature, or you will scorch your filling!!
2. Pour filling into prepared bottom crust. Roll out the remaining dough ball into an 8x8 square. Fit the dough on top of the filling, pinch crust closed around top of casserole to seal. Prick holes in top of crust to vent air while baking. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 min.

5-6 servings

Ranch Turkey (Chicken) Pasta Dinner

This is a Taste of Home recipe. It calls for leftover turkey or chicken, so it should be a quick dinner. I'm going to use chicken, but it might be good to keep in mind for leftover turkey since Thanksgiving is coming up.

Ranch Turkey Pasta Dinner

2 1/2 c. uncooked penne pasta
6-8 Tbsp. butter, cubed
1 envelope ranch salad dressing mix
1 c. frozen peas and carrots, thawed (would be good with broccoli, calliflower, and carrot medley)
3 c. cubed, cooked turkey (or chicken)

1. Cook pasta according to directions, adding the peas and carrots near end of cooking time. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt butter. Stir in salad dressing; mix until smooth. Drain pasta and veggies; add to skillet. Stir in meat; cook 3-4 min or until heated through.

4 servings

Baked Salisbury Steak

This is a Taste of Home Recipe that I'm looking forward to trying. It's on the menu for October.

Baked Salisbury Steak

1 c. quick cooking oats
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 c. each: chopped green pepper, celery, and onion (I will probably just use onion)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 lbs. ground beef
1 can condensed golden mushroom or cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
3/4 c. water
1/4 tsp. pepper

1. In a large bowl, combine the oats, eggs, green pepper, celery, onion, and salt. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into eight oval patties. In a large skillet, brown patties on both sides; drain.
2. Place patties in an ungreased 13x9 baking dish. Combine soup, water, and pepper; pour over beef. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 min or until the meat is no longer pink.

8 servings.
* This could be frozen after the patties have been browned and combined with the soup. Thaw in fridge overnight and continue with step 2.