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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Chicken Cordon Bleu

I know it's summer time. And I know heavy meals are usually frowned upon. And should especially be frowned upon by me who has been subjected to 100+ weather for the past two months. I can't help myself, however, I love Chicken Cordon Bleu, and I despise having to wait for fall/winter before I can enjoy certain meals. So I crank the A/C (look how green I am?) and enjoy my meal. Because, honestly, who wants to melt while they eat? Not I!

I love cooking homemade meals, and since my husband has started working the afternoon shift, I have had to make all the meals ahead of time so he has something other than freezer meals to eat at work.

I love experimenting with mashed potatoes, I have yet to find the perfect recipe but the recipe below is my favourite one so far. I also paired the meal with fresh homemade lemonade. But that's a secret recipe.

Not pictured with the meal is the awesome fresh side-salad we had with it. I absolutely love fresh ingredients and I wish I lived in a place where they were available all year long, but, alas, midwest living will have to suffice for now.


Chicken Cordon Bleu
2 large chicken breasts
3 oz cheese (I used Colby Jack, but Mozzarella will work too)
1 Clove garlic, minced
3/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 Tbsp dried Italian herbs
3 oz ham (I used deli sliced)
Egg wash (1 large egg + 1 Tbsp water)
Salt and Pepper to season


1. Butterfly each breast by cutting it almost in half with a sharp knife. Putting it in the freezer 30 minutes before cooking will help with this step.

2. Lay each butterflied chicken breast flat. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the cheese inside the ham and roll ham. Place ham and cheese roll inside chicken. Fold all the pieces of meat to the center so it overlaps. Place seam side down.

3. Mix crumbs with Italian herbs. Dip stuffed chicken breast (making sure to hold the chicken and ham in place) into egg then into crumbs making sure to thoroughly coat it.

4. Place on baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees or about an hour or until inserted meat thermometer reaches 175 degrees.

Cheesy Mashed Potatoes
6 medium sized potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup Cheese

Place potatoes in water, boil for 10 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to potato. You can either use a hand mixer/stand alone mixer, or a potato masher if you prefer more lumps in your mashed potatoes. While mashing the potatoes add the butter until it is melted and then add the cheese. They are going to get sticky pretty quick so just stir it until the cheese is blended throughout.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Homemade Puzzles

I decided to take a break from cooking today to post a craft that I did with my son the other day. He really likes coloring and puzzles, so I decided to combine the two.

Homemade Foam Puzzles (Ages 2-4 years):

Foam Paper
Printer Paper
Printer (optional)
Crayons/Paint/Markers/Colored Pencils

I bought a package of 45 Foam Sticky paper. There is a sticker on the other side that you just peel away. I bought the size that was about half a page big. It comes in a bunch of different colors and was only $3 at Wal*Mart.

 So after I selected my color (Not really important),
I got a piece of white paper, and measured to make sure it 
was only half the page. If you want, you can print
off a picture instead of drawing it yourself.

I just used my ordinary kitchen shears to do all the cutting

I drew a picture onto the white paper and then removed
the adhesive protector from the foam paper and put my
picture on. Again, you can just print something off.

We used Crayon's for this project, because they offer
me the least amount of mess for the brightest colors.
But you can use paints, markers, etc.

Then we got him to color in his picture however
he wanted.

I helped him a bit, but I think he did a good job.

Then draw puzzle shapes onto the paper/foam
and cut it out.

Viola! An inexpensive way to make puzzles 
and have craft time with your kids


Monday, February 13, 2012

Wacky Cake

A lot of people love chocolate on Valentine's Day, especially chocolate cake. If you are running low on time this Valentine's, and you want a lighter version than the store bought cakes, this is a cake you will love! Growing up this was one of my favorite cakes to make, because it takes five minutes to prep, which is awesome when you are super busy! This is also a great cake to do with your kids, simple, not a whole lot of mess and only one bowl to wash!

Also, for the moms with kids who have egg, or milk allergy, this is a recipe for you! It is light, and fluffy, and the edge of the cake hardens just enough to give a nice chewy texture.
I'm not a big fan of chocolate, and I was too lazy to make my 7-minute frosting tonight, and with this pregnancy I've been digging the fruits, so I added some cherry pie filling to the top and it gave it a rich, not too sweet flavor that I loved!

This is actually the brain child of a woman from the depression, ingredients were expensive so they had to make due with what they had, hence the no-eggs, no-milk. All you need to do is sift the dry ingredients together, and make sure you sift them! I was dumb and didn't think about it and my cocoa has apparently decided to clump inside the canister.

Mix all the dry ingredients together, and then using a spoon, hollow out three circles in the middle of the ingredients. It helps if you have one that is fairly deep and wide for the vegetable oil. Then you add the three wet ingredients - oil, vanilla and vinegar into the holes. 

Pour the cup of cold water over all the ingredients and try to mix it as well as you can, especially the bottom of the bowl because it tends to get sticky.

Pour the batter into a greased 8x8 pan. Cook for 35 minutes, it turned out perfect at 35 minutes, but if you oven cooks too hot, I'd definitely check it at 30 minutes.
Once it's done, let it cool and ice/frost it with whatever frosting or topping you'd like! It is such a light, fluffy cake that it doesn't make you feel like keeling over after you eat it.


Wacky Cake

1 1/2 Cups Flour                                          
1 Cup Sugar
3 Tbs Cocoa                                                  
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Salt                                                    
6 Tbs Vegetable Oil
1Tbs Vinegar                                                  
1 Tsp Vanilla
                                           1 Cup Cold Water

1. Sift together and make 3 holes in dry ingredients
2. In first hole, pour vegetable oil
3. In second hold, pour vanilla
4. Third hole, pour vinegar
5. Pour the cold water over all the ingredients
6. Mix well with a fork or whisk, but do not beat.
7. Pour into greased baking dish (8x8 dish) for 35 minutes at 350 F. You will know when it's done if you insert a knife or toothpick and it comes out clean.
8. Allow to cool, frost and enjoy!