Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Life Updates & Wednesday Meal Plans #7

I have been avoiding this blog for a little over a week or so. It has been intentional and I should feel bad about it but I don't.

The not so pleasant parts of life have come to a bit of a head for me. Well, for us really but Emma is oblivious and Troy is way more easy going and less analytical in matters like this, so I have been feeling the brunt of it.

It hasn't been anything big or serious, just a series of teeny, tiny unfortunate events and situations. It just so happens that when enough of these teeny, tiny insignificant yet annoying things occur, it wakes up those bigger things that I tend to shove deep, deep, deep down to avoid thinking about. I can't be the only one who does this, right?

The good news is that we have a healthy, happy toddler who is growing like a weed and a healthy, happy baby who is also growing like a weed! We have all of our basic needs met and supportive families and friends. We are more blessed than most and I am working on shifting my focus to that.

Speaking of blessings, here is what we are/have been eating this week!

Monday- Pork Sausage, Zucchini & Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
*inspired by my sister in law, Sarah!

Tuesday- Turkey Sausage & Zucchini Crockpot Lasagna

Wednesday- Chicken Quinoa Enchilada casserole

Thursday- Veggie Pizzas

Friday- Shredded Chicken Tacos

Saturday- Chipotle night

Sunday- PHX for a family birthday party

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Turkey Sausage and Cheddar Quiche

Hello y'all. I feel like I need to address you all as y'all since I am sharing a Southern recipe today. I considered replacing 'hello' with 'howdy' but the yankee in me got a bit uncomfortable.

I made a quiche so easy, so delicious I just couldn't wait to share it with y'all! In fact this post is so rushed that I only took one picture of the entire process. You see I had planned to throw together a quiche and didn't think much of the whole process. I mean, what is simpler than a quiche, right? A quiche is the perfect thing to throw leftover meat and veggies in to make a quick and delicious meal. That was exactly my plan. I never intended to share the recipe via the blog. Plans changed, however, after serving Emma and myself up a piece of quiche. We could not control the 'mmmm...'s' that were emminating from our bodies. I jumped up and snapped a photo of a partially eaten quiche.

This is embarrassing, yes. I am confident though, that you will understand after making it for yourself.

Sausage and Cheddar Quiche, Y'all

1 refrigerated pie crust

1 lb mild turkey sausage

4 eggs, beaten

1 tbsp flour

splash of cream

1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese

salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

In a 9 inch pie plate, roll out your refrigerated pie crust. Pre-bake your crust for 10 minutes.

In a skillet, over medium heat cook your turkey sausage until all the pink is gone. Drain.
If you want to add fresh diced onion to your quiche, reserve about a tbsp of the turkey sausage grease and saute your onion at this time. Might as well add some freshly minced garlic for the last minute! man, I wish Troy liked onion... womp.

While the sausage is cooking, beat 4 eggs with a fork in a medium bowl. Add a splash of cream, whip.

Add the spices and cheeses to the egg mixture and combine.
I do not actually add salt because I feel the quiche has plenty of saltiness from the cheddar and parmesan.

By this time your crust should be done in the oven, as well as your sausage.

Put the sausage in the bottom of the crust and pour the cheese and egg mixture over the top.

Put the quiche back in the oven and cook for 30-35 minutes, until the eggs are set.

Let the quiche cool for about 5-10 minutes before serving up.
Try not to eat all the flaky bits of crust that fall off while you are cutting into the quiche.

I ate mine with a salad, but I am dreaming of eating it again with some roasted veggies. I like to roast a big batch of seasonal veggies with olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh garlic at the beginning of the week. That way I can snack on them all week long for lunch or alongside dinner.
This quiche is screaming... 'take a chance on me, despite my appearance!'

If you make this quiche, spend a little extra time on the crust for presentations sake. Or don't... obviously I didn't and it still tasted divine.


Monday, August 10, 2015

Monday Meal Plan #7 & Weekend Wrap Up!

People, I am so ill prepared for this week.

Troy and I had such a productive weekend... my most favorite kind of weekend! Uncle Wawa and Aunt Mimi took Emma on a zoo adventure Saturday and Troy and I started on operation 'make room for baby Bogle'. We had high hopes for what we could accomplish and we accomplished everything we wanted and more! We definitely wouldn't have made so much progress with out Josh and Amy. Emma had a blast giving them a slice of the parenting life and I think they actually enjoyed it. I can hear the wedding bells ringing now!!
Emma loves new bedding almost as much as her mama does!

On Sunday we took a spontaneous trip up to Mount Lemmon with our nature girl. It had rained the night before so the mountain was cool and damp from the rain. It was gorgeous weather for exploring and Emma loved every bit of it! We did, too.
After coming back to the heat, napping, grocery shopping and organizing some more (I am totally nesting), we went to have family dinner with my family and wrapped up the evening with a play date with Miss Addison!

We had a really fun and productive weekend. I did not once think about my weekly menu... boo.

I am warning you, it is pretty repetitive and lacking new recipes. I feel totally unexcited to share it with you BUT I often fall back on familiar favorites when pressed for time. I can't be the only one who does this, right? I am hoping that all the cute baby pictures will make up for this boring meal plan!!

Here is what we are eating this week...

Monday- quiche

Tuesday- chicken apple skillet, fried egg noodles

Wednesday- (crock pot) beer chicken burrito bowls

Thursday- chicken salads (made with leftover beer chicken)

Friday- Troy

Saturday- out to eat

Sunday- family dinner

Monday, August 3, 2015

Monday Meal Plans #6

Happy Monday!! This post is going to be short and sweet... got my babe down for a nap AND I am all caught up on laundry and cleaning *gasp*! I still have a list of things I need to get done but I am going to take some time for me. I really want to start the series 'Call the Midwife' on Netflix and I am hoping to squeeze an episode in.

This week we are eating...

Monday- chicken apple sausage skillet

Tuesday- pasta fagioli

Wednesday- crock pot chicken gyros

Thursday- meat lovers quiche

Friday- white bean mac and cheese

Saturday- out to eat

Sunday- family dinner

I am not quite sure which recipe I will share later on in the week with you. It will be a surprise!

Friday, July 31, 2015

Love, Lipstick and Pearls Guest Post

I was a guest blogger at Love, Lipstick and Pearls this week. I have been following Kristin's blog for a couple pf years now. She is expecting her 2nd little girl soon! I shared some books to help get your toddler get ready for a new baby on her blog.

Check it out... Big Brother/Sister books!

Italian Veggies

Is it a stew, is it a side dish?

I have no idea because I have made this recipe for so many different reasons and enjoyed it in so many ways. I love to make a big batch of Italian veggies and eat it throughout the week for lunch, a snack, as a side dish. I told you this meal is confused, but it IS incredibly delicious, so the confusion is worth it!

The most challenging part of this whole process is the veggie prep and that is a breeze.

Italian Veggies

sweet onion, roughly chopped

3-4 garlic cloves, minced

2 yellow squash, peeled and quartered

2 green squash, peeled and quartered

1 eggplant, peeled and chopped to match the size of the squash

mushrooms, quartered

large can of crushed tomatoes

salt & pepper

parmesan cheese

Look at these pretty fresh veggies!

Over medium heat, heat olive oil in a dutch oven or other heavy bottom pan.

Once hot, add the roughly chopped onion and cook until translucent.

Add the garlic and other veggies and cook until veggies are slightly tender.
Just added the veggies to the pot.
Cooked until just tender.

Lower your heat to low. Add the crushed tomatoes. and stir until combined.

Season with salt and pepper. I do not actually use much salt here because I love nothing more than a heaping bowl of these veggies topped with freshly grated parmesan cheese. The parmesan adds enough of a salty kick for me. 

Cook for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Ready to devour...

Serve up a bug bowl of these veggies topped with delicious, freshly grated parmesan cheese.
I am fully aware I have a cheese problem.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Roasted Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

Oh, man. This is legitimately the easiest, tastiest fresh tomato soup one can make. I know its weird that I make soup in the summer, but I just love, love soup. Even if I end up sweating while eating it!

This soups flavor does not match its simplicity. If you were to just taste this soup you would think, 'surely this is a complicated soup'. It is not. Unfortunately, I am the only one who appreciates tomatoes in my house, so I don't end up making this as often as I would like, Last week Troy was going to be at work late and planned to grab something for dinner on his way home. I hate when Troy works late, buuuuuuuuut making tomato soup makes these situations a teensy bit more bearable! You know that age old saying, tomato soup makes the heart grow fonder... that's it, right?

I hope you try this recipe and enjoy it as much as I do!

Roasted Tomato Soup

10-13 Roma tomatoes, cut in half
I have also used vine-ripened and heirloom tomatoes. Heirlooms do not produce that traditional reddish tomato soup, unless you get all red heirlooms. If that bothers you then stick with romas or vine-ripend tomatoes, which are equally delicious. I stuck with romas this time because they were the most delicious and ripened tomatoes when I went to the store. ALSO, romas tend to be smaller than heirlooms and some vine-ripened tomatoes, so you might need less depending on the variety you choose. Phew, I am tired from all this tomato talk.

1 onion, cut into large chunks

5-6 or 8 cloves of garlic, depending on your preference
I always go big on the garlic. Trim the ends but leave the skin on the garlic to avoid burning.

2 cups of chicken stock, Do NOT add more stock without adding more tomatoes or you will have an icky wet soup. Blech. If you want to make more soup, you will need to add more tomatoes and stock.

Splash of cream, if you prefer

olive oil, course kosher salt, fresh cracked pepper

butter, for the pan when making the grilled cheese

french loaf of bread, I like to use wheat to offset the butter I use in the fry pan. I am not sorry.

provolone cheese, or whatever other type you prefer

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
On a cookie sheet, arrange your halved tomatoes, cut side up, your onion chunks and garlic cloves. Drizzle with olive oil, shake on the pan to spread it around. Generously season with kosher salt and black pepper.
Place in center of oven and roast for no more than 45 minutes- you want that roasted flavor and texture but you don't want to lose all those yummy tomato juices.

Remove the pan from the oven and let cool. I roast the tomatoes while Emma naps, let them cool and cover them with foil until about 30 minutes before dinner time.

30 minutes before dinner, add all the tomatoes, onions, de-skinned garlic and juices into your soup pot or dutch oven. Resist the urge to pop a clove of the sweetened roasted garlic in your mouth.
Add your chicken stock and bring to a boil, Lower the heat to medium low and simmer for 15-20 minutes,

While the soup is simmering, heat your fry pan for the grilled cheeses. Add a pat of butter.

Toast the bread on one side, flip. Add your provolone cheese. Toast the other side.
Remove from the pan and put into a warmed oven, until dinner time,

If you have many sandwiches to make you may need to add more butter to the pan.
Once the soup has simmered for 15-20 minutes, use an immersion blender to smooth it out. You can also use a blender, but be very, very careful. Work in batches and leave the opening part of the lid off, to avoid burning.
I like my soup a bit rustic, so I just add a splash of cream, stir it up and serve it up. You can always strain your soup through a fine mesh strainer. I am too lazy and impatient for that.
Make this, love this and enjoy it for dinner and lunch! Leftovers are just as delicious!
This little love preferred the grilled cheese to the tomato soup!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Monday Meal Plans #5

It was another fantastic weekend for us. Well, except for the fact that Troy had to work on a big project Friday and Saturday. Emma and I made the most of it all, though! On Saturday, we got in a little IKEA time. There were some things we were looking at for Emma's big girl room and they were on sale this weekend. We traveled north to an absolute zoo! There were a lot of families shopping for back to school. It was sweet to see these fresh faced college students to be shopping with their families for dorm room and apartment necessities. I remember being 17 and preparing for college, I thought I knew it all. Within a week of being on campus I quickly learned how little I actually knew about people and the world I was ready to conquer. I couldn't help but look at the faces of my fellow IKEA shoppers and think about how much they will experience and grown from in this next phase of their lives and how exciting it will be for them! I don't mean for this to sound superior, at all. I truly believe AND feel that the older I get, the more I realize how much I still have to learn, Aging is a humbling thing.

Any who, onto our weekly menu! I have been trying to expand our horizons a bit over here. I tend to have a few regulars in my rotation because they are familiar, easy and I know they are well loved. The problem is, I get bored of making and eating them after a while. I have been on the hunt for easy and tasty newer recipes to add to our meal plans. If you have any favorites, please pass them along!

Monday- rotisserie chicken, sweet potatoes and bacon green beans
I have a long day of doctor appointments, helping Troy at the office and grocery shopping. One stop on my list is Costco. I love grabbing a rotisserie chicken... makes a great dinner and I use the extra chicken to make a simple chicken salad for lunch!

Tuesday- burgers, corn, green bean almondine
Can you tell green beans are on my Costco list? Have to use them all up and we don't mind!

Wednesday- Chili Stuffed Baked Potatoes
I will make an easy crockpot chili and jazz it up by using it as a topping for baked potatoes.

Thursday- flank steak salads
Troy will grill flank steak for our salads when he grills burgers on Tuesday. I hope I can resist a piece here and there so that we have some for salads Thursday!

Friday- double date night!
Troy and his business partner AKA bestie for life, Matt, are taking Katie and I out to dinner. There will be some nerd talk business conversations but mostly it will be fun to get out with our friends, the Bernies!

Saturday- I could totally make something up here and you would never know, however I wouldn't do that to you. I have no plans yet, BUT I have a hunch that it will be egg drop soup. I was obsessed with egg drop soup when I was pregnant with Emma. Early in this pregnancy just the thought of eggs was enough to send me running to the bathroom. Well, that has passed my friends, and the egg drop soup obsession has set in. I have to have once every week and I prefer it from my favorite hole in the wall local Chinese restaurant. They know Troy and they know his order. They think he doesn't have a real family because they have never met us. I think they believe he lies about having a family so he won't be embarrassed that he is ordering for two. They love him anyways. Plus we get free wontons out of the deal. Another reason that I think they feel bad for him! I am not complaining, though. Wontons broken up in egg drop soup... is there anything greater? (The answer is no.)

Sunday- Family dinner
Love not having to worry about family dinner, unless I host it. We live a good 45 minutes across town, though, so my mom hosts most weeks. I try to host a holiday, Troys birthday celebration, my moms birthday and a couple others here and there.

Again, if you have any favorite family recipes please share!!

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