Thursday, July 20, 2017

Zucchini Cakes

I did not like zucchini growing up - but now I love it! I have been practicing making zucchini recipes all summer! This recipe is figure friendly because they are baked instead of fried.



Ingredients:

1 3/4 cup shredded zucchini

1 egg, lightly beaten

1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

1/4 cup panko bread crumbs

1 tablespoon fresh basil, finely chopped

1 teaspoon fresh garlic, finely chopped

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly coat the parchment paper with a non-stick cooking spray.

I shredded my zucchini in a mini food processor. Place the zucchini in the middle of a large paper towel. Fold up the corners and squeeze out any extra moisture. Make sure that the zucchini is really dry.


Place the zucchini and the remaining ingredients in a medium sized bowl and mix until everything is  combined.



Place large tablespoons on the prepared baking sheet. using a cookie scoop.  Lightly press the scoops with a small spatula to flatten.


Bake 18 to 20 minutes - until the edges are golden. This recipe make nine zucchini cakes.




Serve with your favorite dipping sauce!




Thursday, July 13, 2017

Summer Goals

I have been working on some summer goals!  Unfortunately I haven't been home a lot this summer and when I come home - I have vacation laundry and grocery shopping. Then we make plans to go away for a few more days.

Goals:

Make homemade Peach Cobbler

Perfect my Zucchini Fritter recipe

Attend an Angel game (done 7/16)

Host a Barbecue

Host a Brunch

Make Shark Week cookies

Make Basketball cookies

Make a dinner picnic to enjoy at Salt Creek on the hill above the beach

Make a huge jar of homemade Granola

Every week that we are home - I want to make a large Fruit Salad

Make Sweet Potato Fries

Now I think I need a nap.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Strawberries and Cream Ice Cream


I made some Strawberries and Cream ice cream in honor of Wimbledon.

Ingredients:

1 cup heavy whipping cream - cold

2 tablespoon granulated sugar

14 ounces sweetened condensed milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups fresh strawberries - diced




Directions:

Chill metal mixing bowl and whisk from your stand mixer in the freezer for 15 minutes.

Combine sugar and cold whipping cream in the mixing bowl and mix on medium-high until soft peaks form.

Shut the mixer off and gently fold in the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla and chopped fresh strawberries.

Pour the mixture into a glass or metal loaf pan. Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap.

Place in the freezer for at least 6 hours or overnight.


Enjoy while watching Wimbledon. I hope that Rodger wins!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Red, White and Blue Pretzels


I made red, white and blue pretzel snacks for the fireworks shows tonight. The salty and sweet combination is a perfect treat after a barbecue.

Ingredients:

bag of pretzel rods

bag of white chocolate tabs

bag of red chocolate tabs

bag of blue chocolate tabs

white sprinkles 

pretzel bags

red and blue ribbon

parchment paper

Directions:

Lay the pretzel rods out on parchment paper. Remove the broken pieces.


Melt the whole bag of white chocolate tabs and put the melted chocolate into a tall glass.


Twist and turn the pretzel rod around the glass and lay it on the parchment paper to set.


Melt about 3/4 of the bag of blue chocolate. Dip the top end into the blue melted chocolate. Add the white sprinkles while the blue chocolate is still wet. Wait for the blue chocolate to set.


Melt a small handful of the red tabs and but the melted tabs into a zipper top bag. Twist the red melted chocolate onto one end and snip a small hole with scissors. Make some stripes.


Once every pretzel is completely dry they can be packaged into some pretzel bags and tied with ribbon.


Have a safe and wonderful 4th of July! Happy birthday America!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Fresh Homemade Lemonade


My sweet tennis friend Ann gave me a bag of huge lemons from her tree. So I made some homemade lemonade. I squeezed about eight huge lemons and made about a cup and a half of lemon juice. Sometimes lemons can be a little sweet or tart so the recipe can be adjusted accordingly.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 - 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

4 cups of water

1 cup of simple syrup ( 1 cup of water boiled with 1 cup of sugar and cooled)

2 lemons sliced

Directions:

Combine all of the ingredients in a large pitcher. Place the pitcher in the refrigerator for a few hours.

Take the pitcher out of the fridge and give the lemonade a good stir. and taste test.

If the lemonade is not sweet enough - add about 1/4 cup sugar.

Other options are to add some strawberries or raspberries. Fresh mint would also be a wonderful garnish.

Unfortunately I didn't go to the produce store to add the berries until the lemonade was almost gone!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

July 4th Decorations for Meals on Wheels


I made 50 of these little decorations for Meals on Wheels. They were actually fun to make and look so cheerful. I had everything I needed to make these fun ornaments in my craft cabinet. This project would look awesome made into a banner type project.

Supply List:

red, white and blue fabric 

red, white and blue felt

red, white and blue embroidery thread

red, white and blue buttons or beads

red, white and blue narrow ribbon

round cookie cutter

star cookie cutters

black pen

sharp fabric scissors

cotton batting, cotton balls


Directions:

Using the black pen trace two circles for each ornament onto a red, white or blue fabric or felt.

Start cutting the circles. The cutting is always my least favorite part of any project. I made 50 ornaments so I had to cut 100 circles.

Using the star cookie cutters trace 1 star for each ornament that you are making.


Sew a star on the front of each ornament with a simple running stitch.


I sewed a button in the middle of each star.


Cut a 6" piece of thin ribbon and sew the back to the front - sewing in the ribbon at the top in a loop. Before sewing the ornament all the way closed add some batting or a few jumbo cotton balls.


These ornaments would look cute on an indoor doorknob or on a bulletin board.


They look so cheerful! Have a wonderful July 4th!



Sunday, June 11, 2017

Shortbread Cookies with Miniature Chocolate Chips


Shortbread cookies are super simple to make and you just need 5 ingredients.

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, room temperature

2/3 cup powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

2/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Directions:

Beat butter and powdered sugar until it is light and fluffy. Stir in vanilla.

Add in the flour and stir in until it is combined. Fold in the mini chocolate chips.


I used a green bowl and green spatula. I apologize for the blah picture.


Transfer the dough to a gallon sized zipper top bag. Use a rolling pin and roll the dough to 1/4 thick. Refrigerate the dough for 1 to 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.


Cut the dough into squares or rectangles. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. 


Once the cookies have cooled  they can be dipped into some melted chocolate and placed on some parchment paper to harden.


These cookies would be an awesome addition to an afternoon tea. 

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Baked Zucchini Sticks



These zucchini sticks are super healthy because they are baked instead of fried.

Ingredients:

3 zucchini

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup panko crumbs

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat a cooling rack with non-stick spray and place on a baking sheet and set aside.


Combine the parmesan cheese, panko, oregano, salt and pepper.


Cut the zucchini into strips. I use this Veggie Wedgie to make perfect strips. I bought it at Bed, Bath and Beyond. 


The Veggie Wedgie makes perfect strips in seconds.


Put the zucchini strips in a bowl. Drizzle in the olive oil and toss. Then add the parmesan cheese mixture and toss to combine. Place the zucchini strips on the prepared baking sheet.

Baked for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce. I made a quick honey mustard sauce. With honey, dijon mustard and mayonnaise.


Your family will love this healthy recipe!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Watermelon Bookmarks for Meals on Wheels



I  made 50 watermelon bookmarks for Meals on Wheels. It is a summer reading bookmark. This would be an awesome project for any charitable group to make for a retirement home or Meals on Wheels. Hosting a book drive to go along with the bookmarks would be a wonderful idea.


When I was in Junior League we often had book drives for underprivileged children. Book drives are so important. Many children in lower income households don't have access to books and can fall behind in reading. And it is so important for the elderly to keep their minds engaged.

Supply List:

red felt

green felt

black seed beads

tennis can lid

juice bottle lid

black pen

scissors

black embroidery thread

needle

black ribbon



I cut green felt circles with a tennis ball can lid and red circles with a lid from a bottle of orange juice.  Just find cookie cutters, jar lids or glasses that you can trace.


Cut the green circles in half.


Cut the red felt in half.


Make sure that the felt pieces look like a proportional watermelon.


Sew the black seed beads onto the felt pieces.


Then sew the red piece onto the green piece with black thread using a running stitch.



Cut the black ribbon into 10-inch pieces. 


Sew the ribbon onto the back of the watermelon using a small stitch on the green felt only.


It took along time to make 50 bookmarks. So I made a few extra for me!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Lamps with Pom Poms

I added some pom poms to the lamps in my daughter's room.  I was feeling crafty.


I think that the pom poms look so cute! And it just took a few minutes to hot glue them around the bottom of the lamp.


Although this is my daughter's room - she no longer lives with us! But she comes home for holidays and for dinner sometimes - especially when she needs to do laundry!


I think she will love the pom poms!


I bought the pom poms on sale at Hobby Lobby.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Angel Hair Pasta with Italian Sausage and Heirloom Tomatoes


I always try to make a nice Sunday night dinner.  Lately I have been making pasta on Sunday night.

Ingredients:

8 ounces of angel hair pasta

1 pound of Italian sausage, cut into 1/4" slices

1/4 cup olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup minced fresh basil

2 cups heirloom cherry tomatoes, cut in half

2/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Directions:

Cook the pasta according to the package directions.

Put 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet and sauté the sausage slices for 5 minutes.


I bought the sausage at Trader Joe's.


After the sausage has cooked for five minutes, add the garlic, basil, tomato slices and salt and pepper to taste.


Add the parmesan to the tomato mixture.


Drain the pasta and add to the tomato skillet. Drizzle some olive oil and toss the pasta with the tomato and sausage mixture.



This is such a quick meal! I usually serve with a green salad and breadsticks.