Tuesday, June 28, 2011

June promotion reminder: Studio J free jpeg

If you haven't created a layout with Studio J, it is not too late. You have until midnight June 30th. I created mine and love it. Love the layout and love Studio J! It was so easy. While I love papercrafting, Studio J makes scrapbooking so easy especially for the multiple books I maintain. Below is the layout I created with Studio J. I plan to print a copy for each of my siblings and parents. With a membership, the layouts will cost $6.50 each and no additional time. I get to simply click 6 copies and checkout. Easy peasy lemon squeezey!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Paper Cake...magnificent

It is hard to write words or provide a worthy description since you are probably still gasping in awe. This paper cake was created by a fellow consultant, Tracey Mason as a gift for a friend's son's wedding. The cake is actually paper mache' round containers covered in paper textured by the cuttlebug (you can buy similar pre made paper), decorated with CTMH pearl opagues and Tracey's one of a kind swirl paper flowers, tiny pinecones from her yard and green 'twigs' are a punch from Martha Stewart (available at Hobby Lobby and Micheal's). The blue 'ribbon' is simply paper but real ribbon would be just as beautiful. My goal this summer is to re-create this gorgeous cake. Can't wait to share it with you.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Freezer meals: Pork Barbacoa

My family especially Abby loves this meal! She is definitely a carnivore. The recipe is from Macey's crock pot dinner solutions. I have made it as a crock pot meal and as a freezer meal. Listed is the crock pot instructions and afterwards my suggestions for converting it to a freezer meal.

Pork Barbacoa
Mix the following a bowl:
3 tsp garlic powder
4 tsp cumin
3 tsp molasses
5 cans tomato sauce
1 1/2 c brown sugar
4 c Dr. Pepper soda

Pour sauce mixture over pork roast in a crock pot and cook on low 6-7 hours.
Shred meat meat, return to pot and cook 1 hour in the sauce on low.
Keep warm until ready to serve.
Serve in flour tortillas. Garnish with lettuce, cheese and sour cream

Conversion Suggestion:
You have 2 options. First, follow the crock pot directions and freeze after meat has cooked for 6-7 hours. Then, shred meat and freeze in sauce. Reheat shredded meat and sauce when ready to serve. Or, secondly,  freeze raw meat and Dr. Pepper in a gallon size bag. Combine other ingredients in a quart size bag and freeze. When ready to use, thaw in fridge. Cook in crock pot as directed above.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Freezer meal: Diablo chicken

Another easy recipe from Macey's grocery store's crock pot dinner solutions. You can find all their recipes archived at www.maceys.com/crocktalk

Diablo Chicken
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
4 tbsp butter
1/2 c honey
1/4 c dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp curry powder

If making as a crock pot meal, place bottom in crock first and pour the sauce mixture over top. Cook on low for 8 hours.
If making into a freezer meal: place all ingredients together in to a freezer gallon sized bag. Seal and freeze. Thaw in fridge when ready to use. Place in a 9x13 baking dish and bake at 350' for 30 mins or until internal temperature reaches 165'.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Freezer meal: Pork Tenderloin

I have a new love with pork tenderloins. Baked correctly, these pieces of pork are tender and juicy. I purchase mine from a warehouse store for optimal pricing.

Pork Tenderloin

In a gallon freezer bag place:
1 pork tenderloin
2/3 c soy sauce
2 tsp garlic
1 tbsp ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 black pepper
1 c ketchup
1/4 c sugar
1/4 c white cooking wine (very inexpensive  about $1 at walmart)
1 oz honey

In a quart bag place:

1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tbsp sesame oil
1/3 c vidalia onion, chopped
1/3 c celery, chopped
1/3 c carrot, chopped
1/3 c red pepper, chopped
1/3 c green bell pepper, chopped
1 c pineapple chunks

Seal bags. Place together inside a gallon size freezer bag. Label and freeze. Thaw in fridge when ready to use. Can be cooked in crock pot for 4-6 hours on low or placed in oven at 350' for 30 minutes.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Freezer meal: Polynesian Pork Chops

This recipe is courtesy of Macey's grocery store. They offer weekly crock pot dinner solutions. This is their recipe. I suggest serving it with rice and a yummy salad.

Polynesian Pork Chops:

In a gallon size freezer bag place:
4 3/4 inch think boneless pork chops
1 can of golden mushroom soup
20 oz can of pineapple chunks
1 tsp garlic powder or minced garlic
1/4 c water
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp honey

Label. Freeze. Thaw in fridge when ready to use.

Monday, June 13, 2011

June promotion: Studio J free jpeg

Studio J is an awesome FREE online scrapbooking option for those who need to get caught up, have limited creative working space, can't find time to scrapbook, need to make multiple projects or love the ease of working on a computer!Best of all, Studio J is FREE to use. Costs incur for printing only.

In June, you will also get a FREE jpeg file of one project. Use the jpeg (the digital copy) to print at your favorite printing store or to share digitally (on a blog or by email).

Click the Studio J button on the right of the blog or go to www.tabatha.myctmh.com and click Studio J. Create an account (to save your work for free for 90 days) and begin uploading photos. Super easy!

Email me your jpeg to be entered into a contest for a $25 gift certificate!! Winner announced July 5th.

Freezer meal: Denison's Lasagna

Here is my hubby's favorite lasagna. The recipe is a family tradition and favorite of my best friend (and partner in crime) Mallory Denison Miller. Thank you Denison family for sharing!

Denison Lasagna
1lb hamburger
3 1/2 c diced tomatoes (fresh or canned)
8 oz seasoned tomato sauce
envelope of Spaghetti sauce mix
6 oz mozzarella cheese
2 c cottage cheese
1  box lasagna noodles

Brown hamburger with diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and envelope of seasoning. Cook noodles al dente. In a disposable aluminum baking dish, layer meat mixture, cottage cheese, mozzarella cheese and lasagna noodles. Cover. Label and freeze.

Bake frozen for 2 hrs or thawed for 1 hour at 375'

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Freezer meal: Candied Carrots

Don't forget that side dishes and breakfast items can become freezer meals also. Below is a yummy recipe for Candied Baby Carrots. A favorite in our house. It is the only way my kids will eat cooked carrots. With the butter and sugars, can you tell why?

Candied Carrots
2lb bag of baby carrots
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 c butter
1/2 c brown sugar

Place carrots, salt and sugar in a bag together. Place the remaining ingredients together in a quart size ziploc. Place both bags together in a gallon size bag. Label and freeze.

When ready to use, place carrots, salt and sugar in a saucepan. Cover with water. Boil; reduce heat to medium and cook for 20 minutes. Drain. Add butter and brown sugar. Cook 5 mins. Serve!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Freezer meals: Honey Lime Chicken

In my searches for recipes, the term 'Freezer Meal' seems to have many definitions. I think of a freezer meal as a dish of unbaked food tossed in a bag and placed in the freezer for later cooking and consumption. But, I find many cookbooks full of recipes of cooked meal, frozen and re-cooked. Isn't that a left over??? Below is one of those "questionable" recipes. It is delicious. To make it a Tabatha-approved recipe, I would follow the suggestions under the original recipe. This recipe was found online at http://www.30mealsinoneday.com

 Honey Lime Chicken

2lbs chicken tenders
1/2 Tbsp garlic salt
1 Tbsp peanut oil
20 oz can of pineapple rings
1/4 c honey
3 Tbsp lime juice
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp cornstarch

Original directions:
Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt. Brown in oil. Add 1/4 of pineapple juice to skillet. Cover. Simmer 6-8 mins until chicken is golden brown. Remove chicken. Add honey, lime, soy, cornstarch and remaining pineapple juice to existing juices in pan. Bring to boil, cook until clear-about 1 minutes. Remove. Cool. Place chicken, pineapple rings and sauce in bag together. Freeze.
Thaw in fridge when ready to use. Heat in 9x13 dish in oven for 30 mins at 350'

Tab directions:
Place frozen chicken tenders in a ziploc bag with garlic salt and 1/4 c pineapple juice and pineapple rings. Seal. Set aside.
In a quart size ziploc, place remaining pineapple juice, lime juice, soy sauce, honey and cornstarch. Seal. Set aside.  Place both bags into a large gallon size bag with instructions.

Instructions: Thaw in fridge. Place chicken mixture in a 9x13 dish. Boil sauce for 1 min or until clear and thick. Pour over chicken. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until chicken reaches 165'

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Freezer meals: Stuffed Shells

I love pasta! And, I love cheese!! Enter in Stuffed Shells....I am in love! The secret to freezing pasta...under cook it before freezing otherwise it will turn to mush. Yuck! This recipe is from Kraft foods. I use to receive a free quarterly magazine from Kraft Foods and tore out this favorite. I now receive weekly emails. You can sign up at http://www.kraftfoods.com/. When preparing this, I suggest doubling it. Not only do the cheeses come from the grocer in the doubled size containers but with little work you will have 2 meals prepared.

Stuffed Shells (single tray measurements)

12 jumbo shells, cooked al dente (under cooked)
4 oz mozzarella cheese, divided. use 3/4 c in shells. remaining on top
8 oz ricotta cheese
2 oz parmesan cheese
1 egg
1/4 tsp pepper
1 jar spaghetti sauce

Combine cheeses, egg and pepper in a bowl. Spoon into shell unto full. Place filled shells into a disposable tin (can be a pie tin or cake pan. these are inexpensive and can be found a grocery stores and $1 stores). Pour spaghetti sauce over the top. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese.
Cover and freeze.
Thaw in fridge when ready to use.
Preheat oven to 350'
Bake for 30 mins.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Freezer meals: Almond Chicken

I shared this recipe at a church function and it was well received. I found the recipe in a church produced cookbook from Beaverton, OR. The recipe is similar to one from the great freezer meal company Dream Dinners. For convenience and gourmet taste, Dream Dinners is great. You can see if a location is near you by searching http://www.dreamdinners.com/

Almond Chicken

6 chicken breasts (frozen is cheapest and convenient but fresh is ok)
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 c sliced almonds
2 c bread crumbs (I prefer Panko bread crumbs)
black pepper to taste

Place frozen chicken breasts in a freezer gallon size. Add beaten to eggs to chicken bag. Seal bag. In another quart sized bag, place bread crumbs, almonds and pepper. Seal crumb bag. Place the 2 sealed bags inside a 3 gallon sized bag for storage. Freeze.

Thaw in fridge when ready to use.
Drain excess egg from chicken.
Dredge chicken in bread crumb mix.
Place in a greased 9x13 baking dish
Bake 30 mins at 350'  

Monday, June 6, 2011

Freezer meal: Gorgonzola Stuffed Meatloaf

Here is one of my favorite freezer meals. I love the gourmet taste of this meal. Give it a try for yourself and comment how you like it. *This recipe was created for me by my awesome cousin Mindi. The recipe and other fabulous foods can be found on her blog http://www.mindikamoments.blogspot.com/   I strongly recommend checking out her blog. Become a follower to stay on top of updates.

Gorgonzola Stuffed Meatloaf

12 oz ground beef
12 oz ground turkey
4-6 green onions, chopped
1 c toasted Panko bread crumbs
2 eggs
4 Tbsp. dijon mustard
3 Tbsp kethcup
2 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4-6 oz gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 375' (unless preparing as a freezer meal)
Add all ingredients except gorgonzola cheese to a large bowl.
Using your hands stir well. It is the best way to insure everything gets mixed.

*If preparing as a freezer meal- place meat mixture in a gallon size freezer bag. Label and freeze. When you are ready to use, place bag in fridge to thaw. Do not freeze gorgonzola.

Divide meat in half. Take half and place flattened in a greased 9x13
Lay gorgonzola in middle of meat.
Cover with other half of meat mixture. Spray with cooking spray
Bake 375' for 1 hour or until 165'
Cool 10 mins, then drizzle with balsamic glaze (optional)

Purchase balsamic glaze or make your own (1 c balsamic vinegar and 2 tbsp brown sugar. Combine a saucepan; bring to a boil then reduce hear to medium high and cook 5-10 mins until reduces to a syrup)