I know quite the long title right?? This meal started out as me trying to be creative and use stuff we had in the house already. I had a big tub of spinach from Costco that was just past its prime and needed to be cooked. I wanted something original to use it in and realized I have never made a Calzone before. This ended up being super yummy and much easier than I expected.
There were two things I did to make it extra easy . The first was I used pizza dough I made earlier and had in the freezer. I also used my homemade pesto that I have in the freezer. I just LOVE the freezer! It helps make my dinners come together so much easier.
Spinach Pesto Sausage Calzone
1 Recipe Pizza Dough
Cooked Spinach (amount to your liking)
1/2 Cup Pesto
2 Cups Mozzarella Cheese
1/2 Pound Cooked Sausage
On a lightly floured counter roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thick. Spread the dough with pesto leaving a 1 inch border along the edges. Pile in the rest of your filing (spinach, sausage, mozzarella) onto one half. Fold the other half of the dough over the filling and press the edges to seal.
Transfer calzone to an oiled baking sheet. Use a sharp knife to cut 5 slits diagonally across the top of the calzone. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt.
Bake at 450 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.
This is a great Sunday because there is none of the usual "get ready for the week" stress. We are doing chores around the house and plan to meet my brother, Seanna, and my parents for dinner tonight. I love going out to dinner so I am excited.
If you have been following the blog this week you could see my menu plan from last week was not 100% carried out. I haven't cooked dinner since Thursday night so everything I had planned for the weekend went out the window. I apologize since I had planned to post all the recipes as I made them. I will try to kick it into gear this week :)
I hope everyone is enjoying this holiday weekend. Have a fantastic week!!
Monday: Dinner with Hubby's Family
Tuesday: Taco Night with Sweet Corn Tomalito
Wednesday: Macaroni and Cheese, green beans, fruit
Thursday: Savory Turkey and 2 Bean Chili, 5 Minute Artisan Bread, Veggie TBD
Friday: Beach! Spaghetti, garlic bread, salad
Saturday: Beach! Ribs, Twice Baked Potatoes, salad, cornbread
Sunday: Crab Casserole, peas, fruit
Tuesday: Breakfast Bar (I have to be at work early so this has to be quick)
Wednesday: Instant Oatmeal
Thursday: Frozen Waffle with Peanut Butter
Friday: Banana Bread
Tonight for dinner we had stuffed vegetarian peppers and they were so yummy! I just thought this one up while at the store and I would definitely do this again. Its very easy and looks so gourmet. Here is what I did:
1. Cut the top off of a bell pepper and h0llow out the insides.
2. Place the bell peppers in boiling water with the cover on for about 5 minutes.
3. Cook some Spanish rice of your choice and then place inside the bell peppers.
4. Add some cheese to the top and place in the oven until the cheese is melted and the peppers look roasted.
5. Serve with cornbread on the side
The picture link on blogger doesn't seem to work tonight so I will get back with the picture next week. Hope you try this one though! Let me know if you do! It's a keeper!
There is one more easy meal of mine that didn't make it on the blog last week. It is one of my favorite things to eat at home or at a restaurant....PESTO! I love, love, love it! During the summer my Grandma and I always make several huge batches and freeze it in individual portions. They are perfect for a quick meal. All you do it grab one from the freezer, defrost, and pour onto hot pasta. You can also buy it at the store and do the same thing on a hectic night but I just love the homemade version.
My favorite pasta to put the pesto on is ravioli or tortellini. Mmmmm...it sounds so good just writing about it I might have to bump something off of my menu plan for the week so we can eat this again.
This pesto recipe from the Food Network isn't the exact one I use with my Grandma but it is very similar minus the walnuts. If you have planted Basil for the summer this is a great way to use it and something you can enjoy all winter long.
Barefoot Contessa Pesto nocoupons
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 3 tablespoons chopped garlic (9 cloves)
- 5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups good olive oil
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Place the walnuts, pine nuts, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt, and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is thoroughly pureed. Add the Parmesan and puree for a minute. Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.
Panini written by Melanie Bernard. You were supposed to put the chicken salad in between cornbread pieces to make a panini but that didn't work out so well. We just ended up putting the chicken salad on lettuce and having corn bread on the side. Overall, it was nice but it would be better for lunch if left on lettuce. Mix all the following ingredients together.
1/4 cup walnut halves
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon dijan mustard
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1 cup cooked chicken breast
3 tablespoons chopped red onions
1/4 cup unpeeled Granny Smith apple
salt and pepper
I didn't add the 2 tablespoons of raisins, 2 tablespoons of coarsely chopped celery, 1 tablespoon fresh chopped mint that the recipe suggested.
This will be nice and light for going into summer.
On Friday night after work I got the urge to bake. I knew we would be visiting my Grandparents later in the evening so I thought it would be nice to take a treat along with us. Also after a long week of work the way I like to unwind is in the kitchen.
For a week or so I had wanted to try this Chocolate Frosting I saw on Our Best Bite. It is made with granulated sugar and flour then cooked on the stove. I had never seen a recipe like it so I was very curious. I talked my mom into making it with me and we both had a good time.
I also make a batch of brownies (I used a boxed mix...shhh) in a Demarle mold.
The finished product was the smoothest and lightest frosting I have ever tasted. It also wasn't too sweet so it didn't kill you eating it on a brownie. There is a vanilla version that I would like to try too but that will have to be a different day.
For something new and different give this a try.
It is Sunday night again! I can never believe how fast the weeks go. I had a great weekend but as usual it went too fast. We enjoyed seeing lots of friends this weekend which was very fun. I also hosted a bridal shower for a high school friend. I was looking forward to it but I am glad it is over with because it has been so much work getting ready. I think everyone had fun and some people thought the meal was catered which made me feel good.
Last week I was so tired from the bachelorette party that I never got super organized about my menu planning for the week. That was and always is a mistake. It gave me more motivation to kick it into high gear this week. Almost all of my selections this week are something new to us so check back later and I will link the recipes as I make them.
As usual I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and I send wishes for a great week!
Monday: Mom and Dad's House
Tuesday: Roasted Chicken with Smokey Apricot Sauce, 5 Minute Artisan Bread, Baked Potatoes, Green Beans
Wednesday: Homemade Mexican Pizza, Fruit, Salad
Thursday: Spinach and Sausage Calzone, Fruit
Friday: Savory Turkey and Two Bean Chili, 5 Minute Artisan Bread
Saturday: Breakfast for Dinner
Sunday: Crab Casserole, Peas, Fruit
Monday: Pumpkin Pancakes
Wednesday: Kashi Breakfast Bar
Thursday: Leftover Pumpkin Pancakes
See more menu plans at I'm An Organizing Junkie.
(I apologize for the picture. All I had available at the time was the camera on my Dad's new cell phone)
You can tell what kinds of mood I have been in this week because all of my meals have had the theme of being easy. It was just one of those weeks where I wasn't in the mood to try new stuff and spend my afternoons in the kitchen.
The dessert I thought I had to share was this little concoction. I baked some chocolate chip cookies and when they were still a little warm I scooped softened ice cream in the middle and topped with another cookie. It would have been even fancier rolled in mini chocolate chips or sprinkles but that will have to be next time.
The combination of a warm cookie and cold ice cream was amazing! I want to make these again just thinking of them. YUM!
This is a perfect dessert for company that can really be made ahead. I used cookie dough I had in the freezer and just pulled the ice cream out just before serving. Easy right!?!
You owe it to yourself to try these this weekend. Happy Eating!
Tonight my husband said my dinner selection was creative! I don't think he has ever said that before. What I made was so simple but I had never thought to do it prior to this. The big dinner hit....I created a Nacho Bar! It was so yummy and easy. I think I will be adding it to my list of go to quick meals.
At my bar I offered diced peppers, pinto beans, avocado, queso, and taco meat. Combined it was all perfect. Really you could add anything you had on hand-salsa, sour cream, onions, cilantro, black beans, etc.
What is your go to easy meal?? I would love to hear some ideas.
I am finally getting around to posting the fabulous punch that my mom made for my Cousin's shower a couple weeks ago. I called her tonight looking for the recipe and she said, "Oh why don't you just look it up?" I was thinking because this is your special recipe where would I look it up from?
As it turns out, her special recipe is actually from the Food Network. It is called Citrus Tropical Punch. The only change she made was that she left out the liquor. It got rave reviews from all the guests and I am planning to make it again this weekend for another shower.
If you are looking for a good party drink give this a try.
This menu plan is much later than normal and for some reason it was so hard for me to do. I think it is because I threw my schedule off staying up so late over the weekend at a bachelorette party that now my mind is not working.
There are also a couple evening commitments this week that are throwing off my dinner schedule which also makes it hard to plan and cook. So with all that in mind here is my best shot for this week. Wish me luck!
Monday: Dinner at Mom and Dad's-leaving soon actually :)
Tuesday: Buffalo Chicken Soup, fruit, dinner rolls
Wednesday: Nacho Bar (queso, beans, taco meat, sour cream, lettuce, pepper), pineapple, mango
Thursday: Chicken Kabobs with Onions, Peppers and Pineapple, baked brown rice, broccoli
Friday: Out to Eat
Saturday: Evening Shower
Sunday: Macaroni and Cheese
Thursday: Peanut Butter Oatmeal
Friday: Peanut Butter Oatmeal
(Sorry for the less than amazing photo....this stuff just didn't want to be photographed.)
Do you ever eat at Chevy's? If so, you will know what I am talking about when I refer to the sweet little goodness of corny stuff that arrives with your meal. It is so good, moister than cornbread and sweeter too. I found this recipe for making it at home on All Recipes back in 2007. I have made it many times since then and we always love it. It is not going to look like cornbread when you take it out of the oven and the directions say to serve it with an ice cream scoop so don't be alarmed.
The only ingredient on the list that you may not have at your house already is Masa Harina. This is a corn flour that can be found at almost all grocery stores. I actually purchased my bag at Winco. It is worth the extra purchase just to make this delicious side dish.
Sweet Corn Tomalito from All Recipes
In a medium bowl, mix together the margarine, masa flour, and sugar until light and fluffy. In a food processor or blender, blend one cup of the corn kernels with the water and cornmeal just until smooth. Stir into the masa mixture. Mix in the remaining corn, baking powder, salt, and milk until the batter is smooth. Pour into an 8x8 inch glass baking dish.
I have changed how I cook it compared to the original recipe. I cover my 8x8 pan with foil and then place it in a 9x13 pan that is filled 1/3 of the way full with water. I put that whole pan into an oven heated to 350 degrees and bake for 50-60 minutes. Let cool ten minutes and use an ice cream scoop for easy removal from the pan.
For me whenever we make Mexican food for dinner I can never come up with a great side dish. Last week when we were having friends over for dinner I was going to serve tacos and was trying to figure out what to put with it. Flipping through my huge binder of recipes I stumbled upon this one from Family Fun October 2006.
The recipe is for Mexican Rice Salad. It looked so refreshing in the magazine I wanted to give it a shot. I am so happy I tried this! It was delicious and very fresh tasting. It even got the honor of being moved from my huge binder of recipes to my small binder of family favorites. I ended up serving it to another friend the next night and she loved it too. This is now my go to side dish for Mexican food night.
Mexican Rice Salad
Juice of 1 Lime (about 2 Tablespoons)
1/2 Cup Salsa
1/2 Cup Italian Dressing
4 Cups Cold Cooked Rice (Must be cold or it will make the salad gummy)
1 Cup Diced Red Bell Pepper
1 Cup Cooked Corn (I didn't have any of this but next time I will make sure I do)
1/2 Cup Chopped Green Onion
1/2 Cup Chopped Cilantro
Mix the lime juice, salsa, and salad dressing in a large bowl. Stir in the rice, bell pepper, corn, green onion, and cilantro. Cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.
We had company for dinner on Friday night and I had the whole meal planned out well in advance will all my ingredients purcahsed and ready to go. On Friday morning I realized I never thought about dessert. Over breakfast I decided I had to figure out what I was going to make. Since I work, the dessert had to be something I had all the ingredients for already. I stumbled upon this recipe that I tore out of a magazine. I am not sure when and I am not sure which magazine. It looked easy and a little more impressive than just a plate of brownies.
What I did was make a boxed brownie mix according to the packaged directions and baked them in a round pie dish. Once they were cooled I made a yummy topping (recipe below) that I got from my mom. Just before we ate I chopped up strawberries and spread them over the top. Very easy and a great wow factor. I could have just scraped the topping off and eaten it...so good!
Cream Cheese Topping
3 Ounces Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 Cup Cool Whip
Beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Fold in cool whip. Spread over your favorite dessert.
There has been a package of refrigerated biscuit dough looming over me in the fridge. It never seems to fit a meal that I am making and I knew it was getting past its prime. Each time I opened the fridge to get something I would see it in there begging to be used before it had to be thrown away. Last night after all of our Mother's Day festivities I pulled out a recipe for Easy Doughnuts and got busy.
If you know me I NEVER fry. I think there is one other thing I have fried and it was an accident (I started a recipe and was too far into it when I discovered something had to be fried to turn back). So this was very out of character for me. It turned out to be a lot of fun and I was so impressed with myself I had to call my parents over to try them. Everyone thought they were yummy and I was happy I didn't burn the house down.
If you want to try homemade doughnuts I think this is possibly the easiest way to do it. Good luck!
Easy Doughnuts (from Real Simple May 2007)
3/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
1 Package Large Refrigerated Biscuits
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
Heat 1/2 cup of the oil in a medium skillet over medium low heat. Place the biscuits on a cutting board. Using a 1 inch round cookie cutter or shot glass, cut a hole in the center of each biscuit, reserving the extra dough for "holes."
Test the heat of the oil by dipping the edge of a doughnut in the pan. When the oil is hot enough, the edge will bubble. Place 4 of the doughnuts and holes in the skillet and fry until golden brown, 1 to 1 1/5 minuets per side. Transfer to a wire rack or paper towel lined plate to drain. Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reheat and cook the remaining doughnuts and holes. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Gently toss the warm doughnuts in the mixture a few at a time. Serve warm.
Happy Mother's Day!! We were lucky today and got to go out for brunch. So much fun! I am was also very excited to give the gifts we picked out this year. For everyone who is a Mom reading this I hope you have a very special Mother's Day!
I feel like I keep working and working to clear out the freezer and I am getting nowhere. I am going to start defrosting my turkey this week to cook next Monday at my parent's house. I know getting it out will clear out a lot of space. Last week the most amazing thing we ate was the Pumpkin Dinner Rolls. They were awesome! If you have time to add them to your meal plan this week give them a try.
Have a great week!
Monday: Mom and Dad's
Tuesday: BBQ Chicken Quesadillas, fruit, jello
Wednesday: Leftover Spaghetti Pie, fruit, salad
Thursday: Quiche with Ham, salad, fruit (we never got to this last week)
Friday: Macaroni and Cheese from Deceptively Delicious, salad, fruit, rice crispy treats
Saturday: Out to a Party
Sunday: Cheddar Baked Chicken, peas, leftover Pumpkin Dinner Rolls, fruit
Monday: Smoothie and banana bread
Wednesday: Peanut Butter Granola
Friday: Breakfast Sandwich
See more plans at I'm an Organizing Junkie.
I saw these in a post on Money Saving Mom back in November and have been meaning to try them ever since. Today happened to be the day when all the stars aligned (meaning I had all the ingredients and the time) to make these. We also ended up with last minute dinner guests so it all worked out perfectly.
These rolls were amazing! So so so good and not too hard to make either. They also worked perfectly in my quest to clean out the freezer in time for summer. Don't be scared that these rolls have pumpkin in them. Nobody in our group could even taste the pumpkin and everyone thought they were some of the best rolls ever.
I think the pumpkin makes them so moist and a beautiful color. Also the pumpkin adds lots of vitamins to the rolls...bonus! I felt like the Sneaky Chef.
If you have any pumpkin lingering at your house from this last fall please try these rolls. You will be so impressed. One word of advice-eat them in moderation. They were so good I had three and now by stomach feels like it will explode!
The recipe I used was on Money Saving Mom but it originally came from Tammy's Recipes. If you try these let me know what you think!
As promised here are pictures from the fabulous shower my Aunt threw for my cousin over last weekend. Everything was so beautiful and put together I felt special just being there.
These were appetizers that my mom and I made. I actually ate so many of them while I was making them that I couldn't eat any during the party.
These were little tropical fruit cups. My mom cut up tropical fruit into tiny pieces and then layered them in shot glasses. They were so good!
These were some of the amazing floral arrangements my Aunt had ordered. Really set the tropical theme.
This punch was fantastic! My mom made it and it is one of the only punches I have heard of that needs to sit overnight. I will see if I can get the recipe to share.
For Dessert we had these yummy little cakes from Beaverton Bakery. They were the perfect sweet finish.
As a surprise my Aunt hired a Hawaiian Dancer to come teach and entertain us. So original!
I had to take a picture of the presents just because they looked pretty.
To end the day there was a nice tray of exotic coconut soap waiting for us to take at the elevators.
A perfect afternoon! Thank you to all who were involved!
If you have been reading the blog for long you know I have been in on a quest to use up everything from our freezer. I feel like it is so unorganized and the only way to get it back into shape is use up stuff that has been lingering in there. Today I wanted to use up frozen cranberries that had been in a deep freeze since Christmas.
A while ago I pulled this recipe out of the Food Day section of the newspaper. I wish I knew the date but I cut it out so the date it long gone. It is for Cranberry Buckle with Vanilla Crumb. It sounded so yummy! It also turned out to be pretty easy and everyone gave it great reviews when I took it to my parents house for dinner.
Now if you have stray cranberries in your freezer from the holidays here is an idea you can use too. Enjoy!
Cranberry Buckle with Vanilla Crumb
1 Cup Flour
3/4 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Teaspoon Fine Sea Salt
1/2 Cup Cold Unsalted Butter
1 3/4 Cup Flour
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Fine Sea Salt
1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter
3/4 Cup Sugar
Grated Zest of 1 Orange
1 Tablespoon Vanilla
1/2 Cup Sour Cream (I used plain yogurt in an attempt to make it slightly healthier)
2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Cranberries
To make Crumb: Combine the flour, sugars, salt and butter in the bowl of a food processor or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Pulse or combine on low speed until the mixture is the texture of coarse crumbs. Drizzle the vanilla over the mixture and mix briefly to distribute. Use immediately or store in a plastic bag in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To Make Buckle: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 inch square pan. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl.. Using a handheld mixer with beaters or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, sugar and orange zest together on medium high speed for 3-5 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down the side of the bowl after each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Stir in the flour mixture in three additions alternating with the sour cream in two additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally. Fold in 1 cup of cranberries.
Spread the mixture into the prepared pan. Distribute remaining 1 cup cranberries over the cake and sprinkle the crumb topping over the cranberries.
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until lightly golden and firm on top. Wrapped in plastic wrap, this cake will keep at room temperature for 2 to 3 days.
I am doing my meal plan earlier today because I am going to my cousin's wedding shower this afternoon. I am excited to see how my Aunt has decorated the place we are going. I am sure it is going to be beautiful because she always does an amazing job. I will take pictures and post them so you can see for yourself.
My plan this week was hard because there are so many things I want to make and just not enough days for me to make them all. We are also having friends over for dinner on Friday which I am excited about. I want to make a bunch of different items so we will see if I have time.
Thank you for checking out my meal plan. I hope you have a fantastic week!
Monday: Mom and Dad's House
Tuesday: Mexican Chicken Stew, Mexican Cornbread (when I made this a few weeks ago it made a ton so we have been eating it from the freezer), Salad
Wednesday: Meatloaf, Twice Baked Potatoes, Pumpkin Rolls or Banana Muffins, Salad
Thursday: Quiche, Biscuits, Salad, Fruit
Friday: Crock Pot Shredded Beef, Homemade Tortillas, Sweet Corn Tomalito, Mexican Rice Salad, Green Salad
Saturday: Thai Chicken Fettuccine (with pork instead of chicken), Jello,
Sunday: Mother's Day Brunch
Monday: Smoothie and Bread
Tuesday: Pumpkin Pancakes
Wednesday: Perfect Oatmeal
Thursday: Perfect Oatmeal
Friday: Smoothie and Bread
See more menu plans at I'm an Organizing Junkie.