Merry Christmas cookies


There isn’t anything better on a rainy day than watching football, baking cookies, and having a pot roast in the slow cooker, so dinner is easy! These cookies are a variation of our favorite cookie recipe, honestly you can switch up the add-ins and make them at any season. I’m a big proponent of cookie to add-ins ratio being 1-1:


I like them to barely hold together, so you’ve got the add-in’s in every single bite. They don’t have a lot of spread either, so you can fit more on the pan (this is before baking):


And this is after:


This makes about 32 cookies total! Enjoy!

Merry Christmas Cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tbs all purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp of baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda 
  • 1/2 tsp of kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tbs pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup green, red, and white sprinkles

Directions

  1. Cut butter into tablespoon slices and place in the bottom of the mixer. Set your egg out on the counter. Do this first then prep the rest of your ingredients
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with a Silpat mat or parchment paper.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt. Set aside.
  4. Crack egg into a small cup and whisk with vanilla.
  5. On medium speed cream butter for about three minutes.
  6. Add sugars to butter and mix until light and fluffy about 3-4 minutes.
  7. Scrape down the sides and then add in the egg mixture. Mix until it resembles cottage cheese (so slightly lumpy, but well mixed).
  8. Add all of the flour mixture to the bowl. Mix just a little by hand (so it doesn’t puff out when you start the mixer), and then mix on low speed only until barely blended.
  9. Stir in white chocolate chips and sprinkles
  10. Bake for seven minutes, then rotate the pan 180 degrees and bake for two additional minutes. Let cool on the pan for 2 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  11. Will keep in an air tight container at room temperature for 3-5 days. In our house they rarely last that long.
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Cuban influenced sandwiches & Shake Shack Mac and cheese


This was maybe one of my favorite leftover meals we’ve ever made. This past weekend B smoked a pork butt for seventeen hours and we had pork sandwiches with tater tots that I smothered with Shake Shack cheese sauce.

We had both pork and sauce left over, so on Monday we decided to do leftovers. I’ve been reading A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow and the chapter I read the other night discussed Cuban sandwiches. They sounded so good, I decided to replicate it with our leftovers and it didn’t disappoint. We first broiled butter on split hoagie rolls just until barely turning brown (not too long as you’re taking them out, layering items, and then broiling them again). I layered mayonnaise, mustard, dill hamburger pickles, ham, shredded pork and a slice of Swiss cheese on one side, and then a single slice of Swiss cheese on the other side. Broil until cheese is melted, but watch the whole time so the bread doesn’t burn. I mean. It was magic.

For our side, I warmed up the left over cheese sauce while I boiled 8 oz of rotini (I used the Banza chickpea rotini, if you haven’t tried it, it’s awesome! Tastes just like regular pasta). Once the rotini was done, I just drained it and mixed it with the warmed cheese sauce. It was Monday leftover night perfection!

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Skillet roasted chicken and potatoes


I made the Barefoot Contessa skillet roasted chicken and potatoes this past weekend. The boys loved it, so it’s definitely one we will add to our rotation! What I love about it, is that it’s pretty much a one pan dish, so clean up is incredibly easy. The ingredients are fairly simple and the recipe is straight forward. My only issue is that it’s fairly time consuming. You have to marinate the chicken for at least four hours, then the total meal cook takes 1 hour and fifteen minutes start to finish. So, plan your time. In addition to the chicken several weeks ago I made homemade rolls. It makes a huge batch, so after they cooled, I froze them in bags of five, and then I can pull them out and bake them on a cookie sheet at 350 for 9-10 minutes.

It was a perfect Saturday night dinner!

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Chicken enchilada soup


I was supposed to make chicken chili last night, but felt that had gotten boring, so I made chicken enchilada soup instead. We made it grilled cheese style with cheese quesadilla slices on the side and topped with sour cream, cheese, and cilantro.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

Ingredients

  • 2-3 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 can of black beans rinsed and drained
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 8 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 15 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 small can diced green chilies
  • 1 tbs cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Optional toppings: shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese, sour cream, cilantro

Directions

Combine all ingredients in stock pot. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Serve with cheesy quesadillas, and top with shredded cheese, sour cream, and cilantro.

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Brunswick stew

Using leftover shredded pork from last week, I made this Brunswick slow cooker stew on Sunday. I left out the onion, and added kale and greens from my front porch pots. I also added a yellow pepper and frozen peas. It was sooo tasty and the perfect meal after a cold, windy late night baseball game:

 


A wasn’t dramatic about the chilly temps at all. It was worth it to be at the freezing cold game because J’s team finally won!


He got to play short stop, and got a run in at the end to help his team win the game. It was so exciting! And we got to return home to dinner being ready to go!

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Slow cooker turkey meatballs

This is perfect for a Monday where you’re motivated in the morning, but completely unmotivated in the afternoon (which is me every Monday). I served it with leftover salad from the weekend and Rhodes popover rolls. Which according to Prue and Paul Hollywood probably overprooved a bit:


But they still tasted delicious! For the meatballs I cut down on dishes by mixing the meatballs in a bowl:

Rolling them and placing them in the slow cooker:

And then mixing the sauce in the same bowl:

And finally, pouring it over the meatballs:

I cooked the meatballs for about six hours on low and they were perfect!

Slow cooker turkey meatballs

For the turkey meatballs:

  • 1 1/2 lbs ground turkey
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tbs Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp of kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp diced garlic cloves
  • 1 large egg

For the sauce:

  • 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 15 oz can of diced tomatoes 
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp each of kosher salt and black peppers
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

Directions

  1. Mix together meatball ingredients until fully incorporated, but not overmixed or they will get dense.
  2. Place meatballs in a slow cooker (I sprayed mine with canola oil first).
  3. Mix all ingredients for sauce in bowl.
  4. Pour sauce over meatballs.
  5. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4, check that meatballs are fully cooked through.

Top with Parmesan and fresh basil and enjoy! A great meal to start out any week!

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Baked tortellini


This is a recipe that combines all of the things the boys love, tortellini, red sauce, meat, and cheese. It is so simple, but is a perfect comfort meal. I served it with a simple salad and rolls. The boys are already asking when will we have it again! It’s a thirty minute meal that would be perfect to add to your weekly dinner rotation.

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Uncle Todd’s Parmesan Chicken Tenders


When I was a kid some of my favorite food memories are my Uncle Todd cooking flour tortillas on the grill with melted butter and rolling them up, wrapping the bottom of them with a paper towel and handing them out to my cousins and myself. Whatever my Uncle Todd cooks, he cooks a lot and it always tastes like the best comfort food. My Mom introduced me to this recipe, and it was an instant favorite. It starts with melting butter in a pan. Then coating the chicken tenders and placing them back in the pan:

Then sprinkle with Parmesan and butter:

And cook in the oven until crispy and tender:

Check out the full recipe below and how to make the sides:

Uncle Todd’s Parmesan Chicken Tenders

  • 3 lbs chicken tenders
  • 1 stick of salted butter divided
  • 4-6 ounces Parmesan cheese shredded
  • Three large eggs whisked in a shallow bowl
  • Bread crumb mixture in a shallow bowl
    • 1-2 cups plain bread crumbs
    • 1-2 tsp salt and pepper
    • 1-2 tbs Italian seasoning

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut up 1/2 stick of butter, place in a 9×13 (or slightly larger) baking pan, and melt in oven (just barely melted). Take out of oven (with potholders, it will be hot!) swirl in pan to coat bottom and place on trivet.
  3. Coat tenders individually in whisked eggs, and then coat in bread crumb mixture and place side by side in pan with melted butter.
  4. Use about 1/4 to 1/3 of the cheese and sprinkle over the top of the chicken.
  5. Cut remaining butter into cubes and place all over top of chicken.
  6. Cook for twenty minutes.
  7. Check temperature of the chicken (should be about 145-150) and sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the chicken.
  8. Cook for another 5-15 minutes until chicken is done. The higher the temperature of the chicken when you first check it, the less time it will take for the second cook.

Roasted potatoes and asparagus

  • 1 bag of small potatoes (usually about a pound)
  • 1 bunch of thin asparagus

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to broil (or 400 degrees if cooking in same oven)
  2. Cover a large cookie sheet with foil
  3. Slice potatoes in half & trim asparagus
  4. Toss potatoes in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper
  5. Place potatoes on the pan and cook for twenty minutes
  6. Toss asparagus with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper
  7. Add asparagus to pan after twenty minutes and cook for another ten.


It was all delicious!

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One pan roasted salmon


The most simple of summer dinners, four 7 oz salmon filets, a bunch of asparagus, lemon, salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 425, and line a large foil pan with heavy duty foil. Place all your items on the pan like above and sprinkle everything with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss the asparagus a bit so it’s coated, and place a slice of lemon on each filet. Roast for about 12-14 minutes until the salmon is cooked through. While that’s cooking we make jasmine rice to go on the side. This is one of our favorites!

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