Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Fathers' Day 2014: Recipes

As promised, here are the recipes I used for our Fathers' Day Extravaganza! 

First, I started the cheesy potatoes before we went to church. I found the recipe here. The best part of this recipe is that they're made in the crock pot!

Directions

Prep Time: 10 minutes (it took me 20-25)
Cook Time: 4 hours  (I cooked them a little longer--4 hours 15 minutes maybe?)
Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes  (4 hours 40 minutes [max])
Yield: 8 servings 

Ingredients:

1 can--cream of chicken soup
1 c. sour cream
1 T onion flakes*
1/4 c butter, melted
1/4 t salt*
1/4 t pepper*
1 (32 oz) frozen, cubed hash browns, thawed*
2 c. sharp cheddar cheese

Instructions

  • Combine the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, onion and butter in a large bowl. Add hash browns and 1 1/2 c. cheese and stir until combined. Pour into 4 qt slow cooker, cover.*

  • Cook for 4-5 hours on low or until potatoes are tender. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over potatoes and continue to cook 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

  • *My Modifications

    I used real onion. It made the preparation more time consuming, but it provided more flavor. I used approx. 1/4 onion, diced.

    Instead of using 1/4 t salt and pepper, I added a dash of fresh ground salt and pepper so that my guests could add more to personal preference during the meal.

    Because we only had the shredded hash browns, I diced up red potatoes. There were probably 5-7 potatoes in the crockpot. I will use at least one potato per serving next time so that they don't end up too runny.

    The original instructions say to combine in a large bowl, but I didn't want to dirty more dishes before company came over. So I combined everything in the crockpot. Since I used a liner it was a tad more difficult, but definitely doable.


    Next, the pork chop marinade. I tried this recipe out on some friends a few days prior and we loved it. Here is where I found the original recipe.

    Directions:

    Prep Time: 5 minutes
    Inactive Time: 1 hour*
    Cook: 10 minutes
    Yield: 4 servings


    Ingredients:

    1/4 c honey
    2 T vegetable oil*
    1 T apple cider vinegar
    1 t ground cumin
    1/2 t red pepper flakes
    8 (1/2 inch) bone-in pork chops *
    Salt & Pepper--freshly ground

    Instructions:

    Marinade: In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, oil, vinegar, cumin and red pepper flakes. 

    Sprinkle both sides of the pork chops with salt and pepper and place in a re-sealable plastic bag with the marinade. Let rest on the counter for 1 hour. That's easy.

    Heat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. Remove the pork chops from the bag and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on the grill and cook until the pork chop releases from the grill, about 4 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side for another 3 minutes.*

    *My Modifications

    For the ingredients--I used olive oil instead of vegetable oil and instead of 8 pork chops per recipe, I used 4 chops. Since I used 8 chops for Fathers' Day, I doubled the rest of the recipe.

    The inactive time for these chops was right around 18 hours (yes...overnight). 

    Even though the instructions say to grill the pork chops around 7ish minutes, make sure the internal temperature is 145° and give the chops a 3 minute rest period.


    Well...that was our big meal for Fathers' Day. Fortunately both of our dads love pork chops. It was a hit and we are fortunate enough to have them here.

    What are some of your favorite recipes?

    Tuesday, June 17, 2014

    Ch-Ch-Check 'em Out!

    I've been on a reading kick. I mean, I usually am reading blogs/magazines/articles often. But the last week or so has been amped up QUITE a bit! So I wanted to share my top 5 articles I've read this last week. Some are from blogs and others are from magazines (that stemmed from blogs) and I hope you like them as much as I did!

    1. Camp Patton
    Grace definitely has a way with story telling. I came across her blog one day as I was perusing the blogosphere and fell. in. love. She's the sweet mama to four precious children. Click on the blog title to go right to her blog homepage!
    The post she put up this last week is called "too much ado about absolutely nothing". I loved it. In it, she talked a little about their newest baby, Phoebe, who has the SWEETEST, chubbiest cheeks around and proceeded to relate a story from a weekend event while her hubs was working overnight. Go read it. Thank me later.

    2. The Life of Bon
    Bonnie teaches English too! I started reading her blog about six months ago and was hooked. Her personality shines through her writing and I feel like we're friends! She talks about her progressing pregnancy, her students, her marriage, and her faith. She's a well-rounded blogger and I keep coming back for more.
    I recently read her post about how she got scammed in preparing for her trip to Hawaii. It's called "Scams and vacation mishaps". It piqued my interest as they (she and her husband) are currently traveling in Germany. Read it!

    3. Bedlam Magazine
    I know, I know, I know. This is my blog. I'm supposed to be sharing other blogs for you to read. Sorry. This is a great magazine. It was created by authors Cory Copeland and Cassi Clerget. I've read both of their blogs and have enjoyed their writing immensely. But...I read an article discussing the impending, dreaded (for singles), wedding season! *bum bum bum!*
    Molly Chambers wrote a hilarious piece for Bedlam Magazine entitled "I Do (Not Have Enough Booze for This)". She discusses the three "Bs" to keep in mind during wedding season.

    4. youaremyfave.com
    I've never read this blog before and I loved it. A friend was tagged on Facebook and it dealt with breakfast. So...what's not to love? It's called "a breakfast club is my fave" and unfortunately it left me hungry when I was done reading. Since that was the only "downside" to this post, I decided it must share.

    5. be.do.say.go
    Aubrey is one of my favorites ever. I'm not even kidding. She's encouraging, real, funny, inspiring, and a great friend. Last night she posted "Bless this new week." and I needed to hear it as a reminder. The song on her blog last night was such a great reminder that God gives so many blessings and I always have a reason to praise Him. Check it out. You'll be glad you did.

    I do have to say, this post ended up being longer than anticipated, but that's okay. Check these blogs out. They're just little pieces of my life I'm able to share.

    *No, I was not sponsored to post about any of these fine writers. I chose their posts of my own accord. Now go read and be happy.

    Monday, June 16, 2014

    Fathers' Day 2014--By the Numbers

    We seriously love our families. Our dads and our moms. And our siblings. 
    Husband and his sibs might pick on their youngest sister incessantly, but they really do love her. 
    *I think*

    Anyway...
    Our parents have been wanting to get together for the last year (since our wedding), but schedules have never really allowed. So we (hubs and I) thought it would be fun to have everyone over for Fathers' Day. So, we did. 

    Not only did we have family over for lunch, but my parents were here for breakfast too! We had a full day of family, food, and fun. *Yes, I did need to add alliteration here. Don't judge.*

    We're going to do a "By the Numbers" post to show what all went down.

    Fathers' Day 2014

    2 meals
    12 caramel rolls
    1 pineapple
    8 people
    8 pork chops
    1 easy marinade
    1 new grill
    7 potatoes
    4 lbs of potato salad
    1 spinach salad
    2 dads
    2 siblings
    3 couples
    2 gift certificates
    1 grill
    4 veggies
    1 fruit trifle
    countless laughs

    It was a great day with parents and siblings alike. Dads, if you're reading this. Please know how much we love you. We wouldn't be the individuals nor the couple that we are. You've shown us how to behave as functional people, as mature Christians, as a spouse in a loving relationship, and as a parent. We admire you and love you more than words can say.

    To round out the day, my husband let me take a nap on the couch and he even drove me to Five Guys Burgers and Fries for supper...at 9:45 at night.


    So that will about wrap up my "By the Numbers" post for today. Check back here to see the marinade recipe I used for our pork chops and the cheesy potato recipe too!

    Hope everyone else had a lovely Fathers' Day. And as usual, please feel free to link up with me for your own "By the Numbers" post. Grab the button and link back here.



    Monday, June 9, 2014

    I can't believe...

    I can't believe that it's already summer vacation! Yet, it doesn't quite seem like break. I go back to teaching again tomorrow. Granted, I'll be teaching 2nd-6th graders how to knit and crochet. So...that's going to be a blast.

    I've got a ton of yarn in the trunk of our car and I can't wait to get it organized for the kiddos tomorrow! Today will be spent shopping for wedding, shower, and bachelorette gifts! Fun day!

    We already went on one camping excursion for the summer and now we're itching to do more!
    This is a super short post, but I wanted to get back into the swing of things to start writing more!


    What are you up to this summer?
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