Friday, July 29, 2011

Delicious Banana Muffins..or I swear I'm never gonna get to sew again

I swear I will never get to sew again.  I cannot wait for December so I can graduate and sew again.  I try to sew, but it ends up sitting there because I have 59 million school papers and projects to do.  This week, I have to write 4 journal entries, a paper on a movie and interpersonal relationships (I'm fairly certain I'm going to write it on The Time Traveler's Wife...even though the book is so much better, I have to do a movie.), and finish a group project.  I swear group projects are what they make you do in hell....forEVER!

I think I'm swearing too much in this post. 

Well, to make myself feel somewhat "crafty" and I'm always cooking and baking for about 99% of our meals, I like to bake up new things, especially desserts.  My hubby is a banana lovin' man.  I swear if we go somewhere and they have some type of banana dessert, he will get it.  (The Cheesecake Factory's Fresh Banana Cream Cheesecake is sinfully delicious, and that's saying something since I don't even care for banana desserts.)  So...I had bananas about to go rotten and not much flour, so I made this recipe.  It makes exactly 12 regular-sized muffins.  It came out deliciously moist and so yummy.  I love the topping.  I'm thinking of trying it again, but leaving off the topping and making banana buttercream frosting.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 bananas, mashed
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup oil

1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line muffin cups with papers.  In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In another bowl mix together bananas, sugar, egg and oil. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.  Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes.  Sprinkle topping with 5 minutes left in the baking process. 

In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon. Cut in 1 tablespoon butter until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle topping over muffins when there is 5 minutes left in the baking time. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

To Die For Chocolate Pie

I had a bizarre intense craving for chocolate cream pie so Ms Em and I made one today. It's a recipe with just cocoa and not chocolate. I never made a chocolate pie from scratch before and it came out perfectly. 

1 chocolate cookie pie crust
3 egg yolks, beaten
1 1/2 cups white sugar
4 heaping tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

Whip Cream
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar

1.   In a large mixing bowl, cream together egg yolks and sugar. Mix in cornstarch, cocoa powder, and salt. Add cream and milk and stir gently.
2.  Pour mixture into a large saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until boiling. You will feel it thicken.  Cook additional 1 minute. Remove from heat. Stir in butter or margarine and vanilla extract. Cool slightly, then pour mixture into pie shell. Chill about 2-3 hours.
3.  Whip cream and sugar together until it forms peaks. Then pile it on top of chocolate filling. Garnish with chocolate sprinkles or shavings.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Chicken & Stuffing Casserole

Oh my goodness, I made the BEST dinner tonight. It was Chicken and Stuffing Casserole.  I remember my mom giving me a recipe for turkey and dressing casserole, but I couldn't find it.  I had some leftover cubed chicken breasts and a box of Great Value chicken stuffing, so I went looking for a recipe.  I found a few and then sort of made my own with them.  This made a 13 x 9 casserole dish sized, and it was completely devoured by all of us.  Even the toddler loved it.  It melts deliciously in your mouth -- so good!  Serves 4-5. 

2-3 lbs of cubed chicken
1 box of chicken stuffing
About 6-7 biscuits - shredded
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 can of evaporated milk
2 cups of chicken broth
3-4 tbs butter
Shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350.  Poach chicken by adding chicken to sauce pan or skillet and adding just enough chicken broth to cover it.  Let it come to a bubble, but not a rolling boil, just bubbling a bit.  Cook until chicken is thoroughly cooked.  Poor into bottom of casserole dish. 

Next, I had leftover biscuits I made a few days ago for breakfast.  I shredded them and then combined them with the stuffing.  I layered this on top of the chicken. **I don't see why you can't just use 2 stuffing boxes or substitute a can of biscuits instead of homemade ones or even a pan of cornbread. 

Then I poured the rest of the chicken broth, cream of chicken, and cream of celery soups together in the same sauce pan I had cooked the chicken in.  I heated them up and then added the evaporated milk.  Then I melted 1 tbs of butter while stirring to prevent burning.   

I cut up 2-3 tbs of butter and put them along the top of the stuffing in the casserole dish.  Then I poured the soup/milk mixture over the entire thing.  I then mixed it up a bit to make sure the soup/milk mixture got all the way down to the bottom. 

Finally, I topped it off with about 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar.  (If you like swiss, it goes well with this too, but we don't like it.)

Cook for 40 minutes uncovered.  Then let it sit for about 10 minutes before serving.   

This recipe is to die for!  My husband took one bite and could not quit raving about it, so did my son.  They devoured nearly the entire pan themselves. 

Vanilla Pudding Chocolate Chip Cookies | Two Peas & Their Pod

These are the best chocolate chip cookies ever. So yummy!

Sent from my iPhone

Monday, July 11, 2011

Crisis yesterday

I have part of the tutorial done, but I don't want to put it up until it's finished.  We ran over and helped my dear mother-in-law learn to email her resume out.  I'm crossing my fingers she hears a response from any of the ones sent out.

I'm starting my online speech class today.  It requires journaling - - that should be easy peasy ;)  I feel like this class is a big secret I should keep, like the school is not aware they offer a speech class that doesn't require I make any speeches.

Gotta do a bit of homework then I will return to the tutorial.  

Saturday, July 09, 2011

New Tutorial Coming Tomorrow!

As amazing as it sounds, I'm going to post a new tutorial tomorrow.  I have had this in my head for a few weeks now and I gotta do it.  I'm sort of in between classes right now.  "Sort of" being the operative word since I'm taking another state mandated course that lasts the entire summer for intro to math even though I've already completed 2 semesters of calculus.  Apparently, taking advanced math does not mean I am capable of doing my own taxes or figuring percentages or determining if a car costs more to buy or lease.  And don't even get me started on the group project.  I think everyone is fully aware how much I love group projects.  

Anyway, I just finished my Bus Law & Ethics class on Thursday with an "A" and my speech class doesn't start til Monday.  Dang, that A was well earned too, that professor made us write long essays defending our positions and it was hard! 

As an aside....if you are like me and would rather the ground swallow you whole or die than ever speak in front of people, but yet your stupid school requires a "speech" class, take interpersonal communication, and do it online no less!!  Yes, I am taking a supposed speech course about one-on-one relationships.  Do you know what the syllabus says?  I watch movies and write journal entries -- for speech class!!  No speaking to web cameras, no going to class to make presentations -- it's just about relationships.  Woohoo!!  Thank the FSM for my beloved husband who told me about this class, which he hated, lol.  My husband the extrovert.  Do you ever wonder if extroverts wish they were introverts, like us introverts wish we were like them? 

Okay so....we were talking about a tutorial...yes shiny things always distract me.  Well, it will be for a toddler, since I conveniently have one of those right now.  It will be super cute!

I'm going to go pull out my machines and do the tut right after I finish so more busy work homework for intro to math.  Maybe I'll have a cooperative toddler who will let me get it done earlier than tomorrow.  Cross your fingers!! 

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Review: The Bright Forever

The Bright ForeverThe Bright Forever by Lee Martin

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For fear of giving spoilers away, I can only say this ending made me angry. But...I get too involved with imaginary characters in books. It's that or the mother bear in me came out while reading this book. I just don't know how you could live with yourself everyday for the rest of your life knowing your lack of involvement allowed such a horrible tragedy. Why do people stand idly by while horrific things happen that they could prevent, especially to defenseless children?

While a great read, this is a book I wanted to throw across the room when I was finished. However, I chose to refrain from such vandalism since it was a library book, lol.

The author does an excellent job of building and building the story until you are so heavily involved, you can't bear to not know what happened to the little girl. As you read further into the story, you begin to question your suspicions. I could not guess the culprit until it was revealed. Those are the best kinds of stories.

View all my reviews