Category Archives: Yummy Stuff

Peach Muffins

I have a tree in my backyard that is dropping with peaches but they’re not quite ripe yet.  I wanted to make these muffins [bread] for our last women’s group today so I used canned peaches.  I know, the horror!

Peach Bread (adapted into muffins from this recipe)
(my healthy changes in red)

  • 3 eggs (3 Tbsp. ground flax seed mixed with 9 Tbsp. water)
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup vegetable oil (1 cup unsweetened applesauce)
  • 2 cups diced canned peaches, drained
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (I used half and half of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch loaf pans or 20 muffin tins.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs [flax mixture] lightly. Blend in the sugar, oil [applesauce], and vanilla. Add flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; mix just to combine. Stir in the peaches and nuts. Pour batter into prepared pans.
  3. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.

Weight Watchers points = 3 per muffin

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Healthy Baking

My best friend is getting married!  I am the Matron of Honor.  Why does Matron sound so much older than Maid?  I guess I fit into that category now since I’m married and have a baby.

Anyway – I am a little bit of a sugar addict but since I need to fit into this dress in August I need to start baking healthier things.

So here is a recipe I just tried and will be making over and over to satisfy my sweet tooth.  I just made 48 of these to bring some to playgroup on Fri.  Try them – you won’t even be able to tell they’re “healthy.”

My changes in red:

Oatmeal Cookies with Cranberries & Chocolate Chips (Adapted from this book)

2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup whole grain pastry flour (I used whole wheat flour)
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup canola oil (I used natural applesauce)
3 large egg whites
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup cranberries, coarsely chopped (I used raisins)
2 1/4 cups chopped walnuts
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used mini ones so they would incorporate better)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, combine oats, flour, cinnamon, and salt.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together brown sugar, oil, eggs whites, and vanilla until smooth.  Fold in cranberries, walnuts and chocolate chips.  Gradually fold in flour mixture and stir until well blended.

3. Drop batter by tablespoons onto large baking sheets coated with nonstick cooking spray.  Bake for 10 minutes, or until cookies are browned. (I baked mine for closer to 15 since I wanted them crispier).

4. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.

Even though I used applesauce instead of oil and a 2 less eggs when doubling the recipe, my cookies still stuck together fairly well.  In the future I will be pressing these into large baking pans to make bars instead.

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Weekend Update

Since it’s been forever since my last post (and I have good reason, an 11 pound, now nearly 2 month old good reason) I thought it was time to jump back in the saddle.  Nobody told me it would take nearly 2 months until I had some semblance of a routine with a newborn but hey, who’s complaining when you get to look at this face everyday.

What I’ve been up to lately:

Reading: Just finished The Farming of Bones – very depressing but extremely well written and it was a great read for book club, lots to discuss.  When I’m not trying to finish a fiction novel I am currently digesting piles of baby books.  This one is my current favorite.

Cooking: White Chicken Chili – yum!

Baking: These for Finny and Donk’s Craft-Along.  They were so yummy, my women’s group loved them!  I also made this but it wasn’t great.  I have to make something with the pounds and pounds of lemons hanging off the tree in my backyard.

Listening To: Podcasts by this man – love everything he has to say.  Also jamming to her and these guys.

Browsing:  Loving this site, already posted and requested a few books.  Also loving this site for new recipes and gotta love all the pictures.

Watching: I seriously contemplated naming my son Jack Bauer Taylor because I love this show so much but we liked Tripp better.  Another show I am so glad is back after the holiday hiatus is Grey‘s although am I the only one that is annoyed with the whole Denny/Izzie dead guy scenario?

Crafting: This scarflet is slow going because I usually have a little one in my arms.  Not sure how much longer I’ll need it here in Spain but I can’t wait until it’s finished.  I’m using a brown wool and turquoise worsted together, I’ll post pics when it’s off the needles.  I also made one of these with a beautiful asian silk to carry my little guy around in.  Since he loves the sling so much I have 3 different ways to carry him now – the Baby Bjorn, the Ultimate Baby Wrap and a handmade ring sling.

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Thankful Friday

I won 4th place in the Thanksgiving Luncheon Pie Contest on Monday afternoon with this recipe.  I also made this one and this one, both of which were popular but not winners.

Half of the pies entered

The other half of the pies. 

The Black Bottomed Peanut Butter Mousse Pie has to be one of my new favorite pie recipes.  Even though it was about 3 steps too many for me, I will be making this again.  But please, I implore you, when you make this bring a gallon of milk, you will need it to wash down the richness of this pie.

My goofy Hubby and 2 of his equally goofy friends also entered a pie into the contest, half in jest.  They actually won first place, surprisingly enough.  3 of the 5 judges were men who were so excited to see Pizza Rolls used this way.  I think the guys are going to send their recipe into Totino’s to be marketed on the back of the packaging.  Hilarious!

Joe and his friends, Brady and Joey – the brains behind “Lord of the Pies” a pie made entirely out of frozen Pizza Rolls.

“Lord of the Pies” – complete with a pepperoni and bacon smiley face.  Too funny!

Finishing almost all the things on my “to-make” list before the baby comes.  I need to make a few more dozen bagels because they came out sooo good and attempt to make some homemade pasta while I still have my friend’s stand mixer.  I cannot bring myself to give this thing back.  It’s a good thing she doesn’t need it for anything these days.  I think I’ll make her some homemade bagels to thank her for lending it to me.

The best pumpkin bread recipe ever.  Thanks Amy!  Seriously 4 days after making it, it’s still moist.  I didn’t have quite a full can of pumpkin so I also used some pureed apple from my juicer and added chocolate chips.  The recipe made 6 mini loaves for me.  I’ve given 3 loaves away, we ate one and I have 2 loaves left that I have to give away or I WILL eat it.

My finally finished Christmas mantel.  I am very happy with how it came out this year.  The glass balls in the tall vases and the Christmas quote advent garland (tutorial to come) are my favorite parts.  Well, I am a little partial to the red curled paper Christmas tree as well.  Ok, and the cute-as-a-button “My First Christmas” Stocking I found the other day for Tripp.

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Thankful Thursday

This website – Top Secret Recipes.  You have to buy some recipes but they are quite cheap but there are plenty of FREE recipes on this site as well! 

My lovely and generous friends here in Spain who threw me a baby shower last Saturday.  They went to a lot of trouble to plan a fun luncheon to help me welcome Tripp to Spain.

Doesn’t my friend, Rena make the cutest cakes?

Getting SUPER excited for Tripp’s first Christmas!

Borrowing a friend’s mixer to do some batch cooking.  I would love to have one of these but it’s not in the budget right now.  Instead a friend let me borrow hers to whip up 12 batches of pizza crust, 4 batches of pie crust, 2 batches of chocolate chip cookie dough and enough dough to make a few dozen bagels. 

Decorating the Christmas tree – a little early but it makes me happy every time I look at it!  And now there’s one less thing to do after Tripp arrives in roughly 18 days!

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Thankful Thursdays

Joe has been gone this week, he had a weather conference in Germany.  It seems like when he is gone I am twice as busy so I have been running all over the place all week.  I am thankful he is coming back on Saturday, I hate when he goes away, even if it’s only 1 week.

It’s rare that my two cats get along so this week I am very thankful they were cuddling so well on the bed.

I am thankful for my fall themed mantel every time I walk by.  I’m not sure if it’s the apple cider candle, the warm terra cotta painted walls or the new thankful bunting and fall-themed collage I just made.

I am very grateful for these girls.  Lori and Allison are two Air Force reservists who are stationed at our tiny base for a mere 2 months.  Typically when reservists come to Moron Air Base they keep to themselves, eat at the dining hall, and generally don’t get too involved in the tight-knit community here.  Lori and Allison, on the other hand, jumped right into life here.  They immediately came to chapel, met as many people as possible, frequently venture off base with many of us and this week they hosted a dorm dinner.  Dorm dinners are something our chapel tries to do every few months when new transient personnel come to the base.  Basically a big, themed potluck held at the community center on base for the people who are living in the dorms and typically only enjoy the mediocre chow hall food.  Lori and Allison jumped at the chance to plan this month’s Hawaiian themed dinner for people who they may not even know.  These girls are A+!

Hula Boy, my friend’s one year old, never ceases to put a smile on my face.  And until Dec. 1st (give or take a week) he is my favorite male baby.  Scootin’ around the community center chasing balloons in his metallic blue hula skirt I couldn’t stop giggling.

Pumpkin Spice Lattes – I’ve made these about 3 times already and will be bringing a batch to chapel on Sunday.  Yummy!

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Hearty Corn Chowder

Monday nights are Crock Pot nights since Joe and I have FPU.  This week I made Hearty Corn Chowder which was sooo good and sooo easy.

Hearty Corn Chowder

1 box or half a family-size bag of frozen corn (use the whole bag if you are making this for more than 4 people)
1/2 box or 1/4 family-size bag frozen peas
1 tub or block of low-fat cream cheese (the original recipe called for chive cream cheese but I couldn’t find low fat chive cream cheese so I went with regular)
2 cups milk (I used soy milk)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 log crumbled sausage, cooked and drained (I used spicy sausage but turkey sausage would be a healthier choice)

1. Dump (technical term) the corn, peas and milk in crock pot and set crock pot on low.
2. Scoop the cream cheese into crock pot, melt in the microwave a little if you need to.
3. Brown and drain the sausage and add to the mix.
4. When the soup is warmed up a bit, add shredded cheddar and mix to combine.
Serve with warm crusty bread!

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