Sunday, March 30, 2014

New Meals & A New Idea

This week, I made a classic recipe from my mom, macaroni soup.  It is so hearty and delicious and I haven't had it in so long, that it really brought back memories from my childhood for me.  It is fairly easy to make, and so worth the effort it on a cold night.  Tom and I had it on one of the cold rainy nights this weekend, and it was delicious!

Macaroni Soup
Chicken (my mom always used a whole chicken cut-up, but since it was just Tom and I eating it, I used a few chicken breasts)
Soup macaroni (small pasta, like orzo)
2 onions
1 can of tomato sauce
Celery (optional)

Throw in all of the ingredients, except for the macaroni. Bring a big pot of water to a boil, then allow everything to cook for an hour on simmer.  Make sure that the chicken is cooked and that the vegetables are tender.  Cook the macaroni as directed on the box.  Cut up the carrots, celery, and onion on a cutting board and shred the chicken into little pieces.  Then, as you serve it, put a serving of macaroni in each bowl.  Mix in some of the broth, chicken, and vegetables and you are ready to eat!

I also made a super easy salad with a leafy green bagged salad and spinach mix.  I topped it with cherry tomatoes, chunks of fresh mozzarella, and drizzled balsamic dressing on top.  So easy, but so good!

I also made two Pioneer Woman recipes tonight.  I tried her Salisbury steak and garlic mashed potatoes.  The steak tasted like a combination of meatloaf and hamburgers, but Tom seemed to really enjoy the flavors.  The mash potatoes were so creamy and delicious and I loved using my dutch oven from stove top to oven!

For dessert tonight, Tom and I will be having chocolate chip cookie bars.  This is a classic dessert of my mom's and again I haven't had it in a while.  Can't wait to dig into one tonight!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

2 1/4 cups of flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup of softened butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups of chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Spray a 13 by 9 pan with non stick cooking spray.  In small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.  In a  large bowl, combine the butter, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla.  Beat in the eggs.  Gradually, add the flour mixture and mix well (I used my Kitchen-aid mixer for this step, but my mom used to mix by hand).  Sir in the chocolate chips.  Bake at 375 degree for 20-25 minutes.

In North Fork news, Tom and I had lunch at the Jamesport Country Kitchen this weekend.  We both got fried fluke sandwiches and they were so good!  They tasted so fresh and the restaurant was set in a cute little yellow house, filled with cute little waitresses in yellow sweaters!  Definitely check it out, here's their website!

Lastly, my blog readers, I have two questions for you!  Most of you know about the annual crochet sale we host to raise money to honor my mom and a portion of the proceeds are donated to the American Cancer Society.  This year, Stevi and I discussed including other crafts in addition to our crochet goods to offer more variety at our "Crochet for a Cure" event.  Today, I was thinking that I would love to sell a "Cookbook for a Cure" at this year's event.  My school did a cookbook fundraiser a few years ago and it was a lot of fun.  My thought is I could create a cookbook with classic recipes of mine and my mom's and also ask for submissions from family and friends.  I requested a get started kit from the cookbook company and am really excited by this idea.  The cookbooks would cost $10 each and I would give a portion of the proceeds to the American Cancer Society, just like we do with the crochet items.  The only issue is, I would need to place an minimum order of 100 cookbooks.  I hope they would sell because they are fairly inexpensive and I think people would enjoy them (especially people who submit a recipe), but I don't want to wind up with 90 of them left over.  So my blog reading friends, can you answer the following on my Face book page?

1) Would you consider buying one of these $10 cookbooks if I decided to have them made?
2) Would you be interested in sending me a family favorite recipe of yours? (I am thinking of including  a recipe request with our housewarming party invites, but more info to follow on that).

I would really appreciate your feedback on my "new idea!"  Thanks for reading!

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