Thursday, April 29, 2010

Meal 62

Tonight's meal was inspired by a very scary moment I experienced this week.  Tony & I were sitting down at lunch & caught a few minutes of the Rachael Ray show while she was cooking.  She was making Adirondack Red Wing Burgers & the longer we watched the more engrossed Tony became in what she was doing....when she finally topped those burgers with blue cheese (His absolute FAVORITE!)...I saw a look in his eyes that scared me.  That look made me believe for a minute that if Rachael Ray suddenly became single...he might just leave me for her.... :)

Actually I looked over at him & said "She's married you know!"

So today, just two days later, I made those burgers & they are AMAZING!! They are a great combination of all the classic hot wing flavors on a bun.  As always, we added a spinach salad on the side & everyone was in heaven.  Here's the link:

62 meals completed!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Meal 61

Tonight's meal was amazing.  Tony marinated deer tenderloin all day, we sauteed it & added a fresh spinach salad with boiled farm eggs & olive oil brushed grilled french bread.

It was simple & perfect....61 meals complete.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Meal 60

A friend of mine recently attended a "Women of Joy" conference & brought me home a "Taste of Joy" cookbook....first of all - I LOVE gifts, so I was thrilled & secondly -  I thought it was full of thoughtfulness b/c she knows that I'm trying to cook these 300 meals!!  And tonight, that cookbook truly brought joy to our home with an amazing recipe. 

I think the recipe "Spinach Squares" is actually in the appetizer section of the book, but it turned into our main dish for the night & it was WONDERFUL! 
Here it goes:
1/2 stick margarine (I used butter as always)
1/2 onion, finely chopped (I used 2 large green onions out of our garden)
8 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms (I used a small can of mushrooms)
1/4 cup breadcrumbs (didn't have these either, so I substituted 1/4 cup polenta)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon pepper, oregano, basil (I used fresh oregano & basil from our backporch)
2 (10 ounce) packages of chopped frozen spinach, thawed & drained (instead of frozen, we used fresh from our garden)

Saute butter with onions & mushrooms.  Combine rest of ingredients with onion & mushroom mixture.  Place in greased 9x13 inch baking dish.  Bake at 325 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.  Cut into squares.

We ate this with home-made yeast rolls & fresh green onions.  It was wonderful!!
60 meals down, 240 to go.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Meal 59

So I brought home extra spaghetti from last night's meal....and totally re-created it into something I hope will be wonderful for supper.  I guess you could call it "spasagna."  1 layer of spaghetti & meat sauce topped with two layers of cheese & I just kept building it that way.  I'm also in the process of baking those buttery yeast rolls that I discovered the recipe for the other day.  We are REALLY excited about those.  We'll probably add a spinach salad - if it stops raining long enough for us to go get some out of the garden.

Here's the math in a different way...this is the 114th day of 2010.  I've fixed 59 meals, so that means that there have been 55 days that I haven't cooked. I know that might not seem GREAT to many of you, but I'm thinking that's WAY more than I've done before, so I'm happy.

241 meals to go...and I've cooked over half of the days of this year already!
I am calling that success.

Meal 58

Our church's relay for life team served spaghetti last night at a church event, so that was meal 58 for us.  I made a double batch, stuffed it into a crockpot & that was it.  There was nothing spectacular about it - store bought spaghetti sauce & even regular old spaghetti.  But it was for a great cause & it was meal 58!!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Meal 57

I'm so excited about tonight's meal.  Not just because I fixed it, but b/c I think I'm finally getting comfortable & more confident in my cooking.  I'm finding that the food I'm preparing is getting simpler in many ways.

I sauteed some more chicken just as I did for our last meal.  Added to that are fresh spinach salads from our garden....topped very simply with grated queso fresca.
And, the big deal of the meal is some buttery yeast rolls that I made from scratch this afternoon.  Not only do they look wonderful, but they are wonderful. 

57 meals down....243 to go.

Meal 56

Last night I stopped at El Mazatlan (our local Mexican restaurant) & took home a cup of their wonderful white cheese dip.  At home I cut some boneless-skinless chicken breasts into very thin strips & even pounded them out even thinner.  Then I sauted them in some olive oil & sprinkled on some fajita seasoning.  I made rice quick by just boiling it with some tomato bouillon.  Then everyone (who ate in shifts) just piled their bowl with rice, chicken & cheese!! This meal got rave reviews from the diners.

56 meals down....244 to go!

Meal 55

For meal 55 we had a 3 pound meatloaf!!  No kidding, that thing was huge.  Tony loves meatloaf sandwiches for leftovers, so I always like to make plenty.

I never make meatloaf the same twice.  This time I added two farm fresh eggs (thanks Ann!), about a cup of minute oatmeal, some ketchup, some mustard, fresh green onions from the garden some seasoned salt.  After it had baked for awhile I topped it with our standard ketchup & brown sugar topping.  Wayne actually mixed that up for me while we were working together in the kitchen.

I also made cornbread, smashed potatoes (also with green onions) & cooked some greens from the garden. s was a wonderful meal.

55 meals down & 245 to go.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Meal 54

Meal 54 was wild turkey!!  Turkey season is in...and on the menu at our house.  This particular turkey's breast was marinaded & wrapped in bacon for some wonderful results.  We added green beans & corn from last year's garden.  Yummy meal.

54 down & 246 to go.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Meal 53

Tonight I made a hot turkey & cheese ciabatta sandwich with fresh dill.  It all started when I spotted the ciabatta on WalMart's clearance bread rack....I don't know if many of you look at those racks, but I always do.

I sliced the ciabatta in half, took off the top & started stuffing it with tons of great stuff.  The sliced turkey became the base, then I grated up some sharp cheddar, sprinkled on some fresh dill & started on the butter sauce to top it off.  I melted half a stick of butter & added in about 3 tablespoons of sweet & hot mustard.  Then I brushed that inside & outside the top of the bread.  Then I sprinkled on top of the bread some more fresh dill & poppy seeds.

Our vegetable for the night was Granny's 2009 dill pickles from our garden.  Everyone here loves those, but Wayne is our biggest fan of the dill pickle!

53 meals completed...247 to go.

Meal 52

Quesadillas saved us last night!  Aren't they this generations grilled cheese??  My kids actually fix their own now, that way everyone can get just what they want.

52 meals down...248 to go.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Meal 51

Tonight was the classic hamburger patties & green beans.  We had whole wheat rolls that were either toasted with olive oil & garlic or just split open to act like a hamburger bun...depending on who was eating.

51 meals down....249 to go.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Meal 50

Tonight I used a brand new recipe & it was great....but I don't think I'll make it again b/c it was just so heavy.  It was tomato pie & the link is below.  Same basic flavors as the bruschetta we've fallen in love with, but just so much more fat!

I also had warmed up turkey & made an apple dessert that was wonderful!

50 meals down...250 to go!

Meal 49

This was a meal of left-overs from a meal at my mom's.  I've decided that even if we just warm it up at home, I'm including it as a meal.

Especially left-overs like those - turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, green beans & gravy!!  Yum.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Meal 48

We ate bruschetta & greens again tonight!!  Our kids were gone on spring break with my parents when we fixed this last time, so we fixed it again for them to have tonight.  2 of our 3 kids fell in love with it instantly...Dara said that it was good, she's just not a huge fan of raw tomatoes.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Meal 47

Tonight we have eaten from our own garden for the first time in 2010!!  It's always so exciting for us & this may be the earliest we've ever done it.

Our greens are growing so well that they needed to be thinned & so Tony just "harvested" the thinnings he pulled instead of letting them go to waste.  He sauteed them up with some bacon & fresh scallions that he had pulled from the garden too. 

While he was doing that I chopped up the fresh basil & tomatoes for our bruschetta....and "grilled" some italian bread in a saute pan.  This has quickly become one of my favorite foods of all time.  The fresh basil, garlic & tomato combo is just amazing - and I love how light it is for us. I think I can do this all summer!

47 Meals done...253 to go.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Meal 46 - Bruschetta

Tonight I'm using this recipe to make bruschetta for the first time.  It has all the flavors we love - tomato, garlic & it makes perfect sense for us to have when we are looking for a "light" meal.  The only thing I'll add to this recipe is some grated parmesan as a final topping!

Bruschetta recipe at

46 meals down....254 to go.

Meal 45

Roast beef sandwiches....except these were made with the roast deer.  These are my most favorite sandwiches of ALL time.  Chunks of roasted deer, real kraft mayo & white bread!  Yummy. 

I've gotten alot of mileage out of this deer roast.
Meal 45 down...255 to go.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Easter cake!

This is our traditional "Easter" cake.  It's super simple, finding the ingredients is the hardest part.  Follow basic directions for a white cake mix & bake in a 9x13 pan.  After baking, let it too for just a couple of minutes & then while still nice & warm....poke lots of wholes in it with a toothpick.  This afternoon our son actually used a grilling fork to do the poking because we are out of toothpicks.  After there's tons of holes in the cake, pour over the top of it a can of real cream of coconut.  The coconut will be soaked into the cake pretty quickly then let it cool some more & pop it in the frig.  After the cake is totally cold, top it with a small container of cool whip & then some shredded coconut.  We dyed our coconut with just a couple drops of food coloring & shook them in plastic sandwich bags for a few minutes.

Happy's all about love.

Meal 44

Tonight I made Deer Roast Manhattan's.  They were amazing.  I saved the liquid out of yesterday's roast, mixed it up with some corn starch to make the brown gravy.  Made totally from scratch mashed potatoes.  And even purchased white bread just to go old-school. (We normally only eat wheat.)

For those of you who haven't had these before, it's an open-faced roast beef pile of wonderment.....that goes like this, slice of white bread, big scoop or two of mashed potatoes, chopped up deer roast, then topped with brown gravy!  Wow, that's exciting.

And, as if that weren't enough I'm also making our traditional EASTER cake this afternoon.  Will try to post pics & the "instructions" for that later.

44 meals down....256 to go.

Meal 43

Yesterday I cooked a deer roast in our crock pot all day, it had been marinated in some soy sauce, bordeaux & olive oil. When I put it in the crock pot, I added enough beef broth to cover it about half-way. 

By supper time is was amazingly tender & had the greatest taste!  I'm normally not HUGE on deer roast, but this was wonderful.  We had a few green beans left over from the night before & I also sauteed up some spinach, started with a couple slices of bacon.  I've discovered lately that spinach is probably my favorite vegetable.

43 meals down....257 to go!