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  • Impromptu Baking Day {Stock the Freezer}

    We are having some pleasantly mild weather today, so I’m going to turn on the oven. I’m actually running low on frozen baked goods, so the timing is perfect. I’ve pulled out some butter to soften, and I’m coming up with a game plan. Here’s what I’m thinking:

    Lemon Blueberry Muffins

    Banana Bread

    Snickerdoodle Bars

    Cinnamon Rolls

    Whole Wheat Toaster Pastries

    The last three are new recipes that so hopefully I’m not getting overly ambitious here – but I really want to get some things baked and frozen before it’s too hot to turn on the oven even once a week!

    I will post updates on Facebook, and have a Baking Day update here later as well. ^_^


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    Evening Roundup: Two new recipes

    I tried two new recipes today: First, I made these Cloverleaf Honey-Wheat Rolls from Cooking Light – the recipe has been in my “to-try” file since it was published in 2002, and I guess it just took 10 years for me to get comfortable enough with yeast breads to make them. I overbaked them a little, which was unfortunate, because they have a lovely, light texture and are fun to pull apart. I think they’ve become my go-to roll for the time being.

    The other recipe I tried was Heavenly Homemaker’s Warm Vanilla Soother, because we’ve had a plethora of sore throats around here. I made this is a double boiler to avoid scrambling the yolks, and although it took a lot longer, I think it’s the way to go. I used nonfat milk, and was able to create some foam just by whisking vigorously. My husband loved the taste, but I think it needs some chocolate, LOL!

    Get a free Kindle download of Gooseberry Patch’s Hot Cocoa Cookbook ($2.99 value; 5 out of 5 stars in 2 reviews). Be sure to check that the price is still $0 before you click “buy.”

    Totally Target reports that you might be able to find Kashi cereal for $2.99/box at Target, making it just $0.99 after the Recyclebank coupon for $2/1 Kashi product.

    Savings Lifestyle has a “recipe” for a homemade stain remover that I am going to have to try – baseball season is starting, and the coach has asked everyone to wear white pants. (Obviously, my son’s coaches are not the ones who do laundry in their house!)


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    Pantry Challenge – Week 4 Update

    {This is embarrassing.}

    I joined the Pantry Challenge at Good Cheap Eats with good intentions but I have to admit that it’s been a total fail for me. I intended to use up some random ingredients I have on hand:

    Ronzoni Healthy Harvest egg noodles
    Sweetened condensed milk
    Canned cannelli beans
    Cornmeal
    Jam
    Anchovies

    I used some of the noodles, some of the beans, a little of the cornmeal, and actually had a lot less jam that I thought. So I still have quite a bit of this stuff to use up.

    What I realized during this Pantry Challenge is that I can only multitask so much. I’ve been very focused on other goals, and I just don’t seem able to add working in the kitchen into my routine right now.

    But I really want to, because we eat a lot healthier when I cook more. So that is something I am going to work on in the coming weeks, to find a balance between accomplishing the goals I’ve been focusing on with cooking and baking (which I really do enjoy, when I do it).


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    Pantry Challenge – Week 3 Update

    I know I said I was joining the Pantry Challenge at Good Cheap Eats, with the goal of using up some random ingredients I have on hand:

    Ronzoni Healthy Harvest egg noodles
    Sweetened condensed milk
    Canned cannelli beans
    Cornmeal
    Jam
    Anchovies

    But I’ve made hardly any progress at all. As I mentioned when sharing my menu plan for the week, I haven’t felt much like cooking because I’ve been focused on other projects. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s just not possible to do everything at the same time, let alone do everything well.

    However . . .

    I do want to make more progress with this pantry challenge before it ends. And my family will eat better if I do. So I’m planning to use anchovies in tomorrow night’s Pasta Puttanesca, and I finally acquired the ingredients to make Key Lime Bars and Mushroom & Artichoke Chicken with Egg Noodles. I will also finally get around to making cereal bars, which will use up some jam.

    I do really like cooking . . . I just need to plan better!


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    Pantry Challenge – Week 2 Update

    Ostensibly, I’ve joined the Pantry Challenge at Good Cheap Eats, with the goal of using up some random ingredients I have on hand:

    Ronzoni Healthy Harvest egg noodles
    Sweetened condensed milk
    Canned cannelli beans
    Cornmeal
    Jam
    Anchovies

    From this list, I used all of two cans of cannellini beans last week.

    Ahem.

    I’d intended to use some cornmeal to make cornbread, but ended up making cream biscuits instead to use up some cream that was about to expire. And I didn’t do any baking either.

    So . . . I have two more weeks left to this pantry challenge, and I’ve got quite a few things still left to use up. I’m going to try Gina’s Mushroom Artichoke Chicken, which sounds really good, and serve it with some egg noodles. I also foresee a caesar salad (anchovies) and cereal bars (jam) in our future. But obviously I’m going to have to kick things into high gear if I want to have these things used up by the end of the month!


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