Sunday, July 13, 2008


This has to be one of my all time favorite cookbooks! My mother-in-law gave one to each family for Christmas one year and it has been fabulous! I have yet to try a recipe that I didn't like... there were even a couple where I couldn't see how the end result would be tasty... but of course they were. These are especially nice for potlucks because the recipes are designed to feed 14-20 people. Tonight we had
"Mom's Famous Chilighetti"
1 lb lean ground beef
3/4 cup onion, chopped
1-28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1-32 oz can chili
1-8 oz package spaghetti
3 cups grated Cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Brown ground beef and onions; drain off fat. Stir in tomatoes and chili. Simmer 45 minutes. Meanwhile, cook spaghetti; drain and set aside. Remove skillet from heat. Stir in grated Cheddar cheese until melted. Fold in sour cream. Mix with cooked spaghetti. Spoon into large casserole dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

My kids think it's great, even if it does give my husband heartburn. It's also a great way to use food storage pasta that may taste a little bit "old" because the chili is strong enough to cover the off taste.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Feeding the Baby

I must admit... the main reason I make my own baby food is because I'm lazy. Yes, you heard right. But isn't it more work to make your own baby food? Not really. Once I've introduced single foods to the baby to check for allergies, I just grind up some of whatever we're eating for dinner (or at least some of the ingredients as I'm cooking, depending on the spiciness of the dish) and add a little plain whole milk yogurt to moisten and smooth the texture a little. My food mill has been my best friend through this - I've even taken it to restaurants so I can be sure there will be something I can feed the baby - and we've come up with some unusual but tasty combinations that the baby loves. I'll keep a list in the sidebar until we move on to table foods. You can also check out the Wholesome Baby Food website for more great ideas - it's most useful for things like making your own teething biscuits or finger foods since grinding baby food doesn't really require a whole lot of instruction. Then open wide for the airplane!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Tuna Casserole

This is my last minute and nothing planned meal. The easiest tuna casserole ever! It helps that my kids love tunafish - in fact they prefer it plain, eaten on chips like an appetizer.
1 box macaroni and cheese
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can chunk light tuna
1 cup of your favorite frozen vegetable
chopped green onions
Prepare macaroni and cheese as directed on box, adding the frozen vegetables halfway through the cooking of the noodles. Add tuna (well-drained) and cream of mushroom soup and mix well. You can add a little milk if it seems to thick for your tastes. Warm over low heat until heated throughout. Garnish with fresh ground pepper and green onions.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Curried Egg Salad

Not much mystery to this one... just your run of the mill egg salad - with curry added to make things interesting! My husband loves curry, but I don't often know what to make with it so I tried adding it to egg salad one day and he loved it. Tonight I also used plain yogurt instead of mayo since I was out and I thought it tasted even better. It gets rid of that heavy, thick taste.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Tomato Soup

My daughter requested tomato soup for dinner today so I pulled out an old favorite that I haven't made in awhile. I actually got this recipe from my sister-in-law, whose mother is a wonder in the kitchen. I think this is a improvement on something they tasted in a restaurant once. The best part is that it's super easy!

2-12 oz cans tomato juice
2-14 oz cans diced tomatoes
1-8 oz package cream cheese
1 tsp Italian seasoning
salt and pepper, to taste

Heat the tomato juice and cream cheese over medium heat, stirring to break up the cream cheese and help it melt. If you're impatient like me, you can use an immersion blender to speed up the process once it's started melting. Add diced tomatoes and seasoning. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Serve with crusty bread.