breakfast · Make-Ahead

Friday Favorites

Hi Friends and Happy Friday!  I wanted to share some of my recent favorite things that might help and refresh you as they have me!

  • Let’s start with a reminder about a hot, filling breakfast.  This is an important meal, but it can be difficult to find time to put it together on busy days.  Last year I shared these easy Instant Oatmeal Jars that make having a hot, delicious, filling breakfast super simple!

I pulled my small jars out this week and put several breakfasts together in just minutes.  All you have to do is add a cup of hot water and let it sit for 4-5 minutes!

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Sure, you could use those Oatmeal packets, but who likes eating paste first thing in the morning?  (Sense a little sarcasm there?! )  I’m not a fan, but these instant jars are creamy and delicious!

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  • I recently found a Podcast that has been so encouraging!  Donna Otto’s podcasts on Modern Homemakers is full of biblical wisdom and practical, helpful tools!  She speaks on child training, marriage, Christian growth, organization, and current events.  I’m sure you’ll find something that will be a blessing to you!
  • My new Fall dining table centerpiece is made up of all things I had on hand.  My parents had just given me a bag of their beautiful pine cones and I piled them onto the wooden board I had.  I added some pumpkins, both fabric and metal and also added some softness with a cloth napkin.  The flickering candle adds another measure of softness.  It’s rustic, it’s earthy, and I love it!fall centerpiece 2
  • One last thing is the reminder I set on my phone.  This isn’t for my afternoon nap, rather it is a reminder to pray for a lost individual.  I have it set for 1:00 in the afternoon.When I hear the notification,
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    I immediately stop and pray for one minute for a friend who needs Christ.  This has been such a blessing to me!
    Do you have a special burden for a lost individual?  Can I encourage you to set an alarm or reminder for 1:00 p.m.and pray for one minute?  Oh sure, we pray for them at other times, but I’m consecrating this time until Christmas to pray for my friend.  I can’t wait to see what God is doing and how He will answer these prayers!

What’s your favorite new thing?

Denise

 

breakfast · pumpkin

Pumpkin Monday – Waffles!

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What’s better than a good breakfast?  Sharing it with friends!  We had the blessing of doing just that this weekend.

Today’s pumpkin theme take us to the breakfast table where yummy Pumpkin Waffles bring fall to your morning.  Since we had a guest this weekend I wanted to have something a little special to start their day.

My menu included: 

Pumpkin Waffles
Bacon
Fruit topped with yogurt and granola
Coffee

I hope my breakfast made our guest feel as glad to be with us as we were to have him here!

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Rand Hummel, from The Wilds of New England was here for the weekend.  He attended a wedding and preached in our church. We were thankful to be able to return some of the hospitality he and his sweet wife, Amber showed us when we were in New England in September!

Many Pumpkin Waffle recipes I looked at had the complaint that the waffles weren’t crispy.  My remedy was making them ahead of time, freezing them and then popping them into the toaster before eating.  They were perfect!  To do that I:

  1. Let the waffles cool on a cooling rack.

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2.  Put waxed paper between the waffles and layered them in a Ziploc Bag. Then I popped them into the freezer until the next day!  I simply toasted them in the toaster until they were crispy.

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Pumpkin Waffles

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup fresh or canned pumpkin
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Butter and maple syrup, optional

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the first nine ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin and melted butter. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.  Note:  I substituted the cinnamon, ginger and cloves with 1 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. (I used a Belgian Waffle Maker) Serve with butter and syrup if desired.

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These waffles have a nice pumpkin flavor, helped by the spices.  I love having homemade waffles in my freezer ready for a quick breakfast.  In thirty minutes you can whip these up and stick them away – or eat right away!  It’ll be a great start to your day!!

Happy Monday, Pumpkin!

Denise

breakfast · Fast meal · Make-Ahead

Breakfast That is “Love In a Jar”

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Yep, you read that right – love in a jar!  That quote came from my husband when I fixed these cute little Instant Oatmeal Jars to have ready for his breakfast.  He LOVES a good bowl of hot oatmeal with fruit and a handful of nuts.

Our morning routines find my husband downstairs with coffee and Bible, and me upstairs.  Because of this, he often starts our breakfast.  This winter he had gotten really proficient at making up a couple of servings of oatmeal for us to have each morning!  That is saying a lot for a guy who only feels confident enough to make about three things – Scrambled eggs, French toast and …okay, make that two!  Though he’d learned the simple art of cooking the Quick oats, I thought I’d make it even a little easier without purchasing those nasty packets of Instant Oatmeal.

Here was the result: Instant Oatmeal Jars

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The blessing of having the jars already filled is that there’s no measuring or finding a pan or the additives.  Just open a jar, add a cup of boiling water and let it set for 4-5 minutes.  Voila!  It’s done!  You can be as creative with flavors and additions as your taste buds allow.  I made up several jars and have them in the pantry ready for any morning we’re hungry for oatmeal!

Here’s how I made mine:

Instant Oatmeal Jars

1/2 C Quick cooking oats
1 Tbl Craisins
1Tbl Chopped nuts
Dash of salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbl brown sugar

Keep in a tightly closed jar until ready to use!

When ready to use:

  1. Add 1 cup boiling water (you could use milk instead) to the jar.
  2. Stir.
  3. Replace lid and let set for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add other fresh fruits as desired. Eat!

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Here is the process in pictures:
1.
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2.
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3.
Oatmeal

4.

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We love blueberries, bananas and/or strawberries in our oatmeal!

This would make a great breakfast for a busy morning!  You could take the jar out the door with you, if needed.  Everything is contained and could be sealed back up when empty!

The first morning my husband had his “jar of oatmeal,” he sent me a text while I was getting ready upstairs.  It read,

“Now that’s love in a jar right there!”


That made me smile!! I’m on the lookout for freeze-dried fruits to add to my next batches.  I wonder what he’ll say about that?! I can’t wait to hear!

What would you add to a jar of oatmeal?  Peanut butter?  Coconut?  I’d love to hear!

Denise Signature 150 px

breakfast · Main entree

Kid Friendly/Adult loved French Toast Sticks

Happy New Year Friends!  I missed posting and interacting with you last week, but it was nice to have a little vacation with my family over the holidays!  I hope your Christmas and New Year were memorable and special! More about that later this week, but let’s get on with a new recipe, shall we?

One favorite theme at the holidays is the food, right?  Maybe you’re limiting yourself from certain food groups now that the celebrations are over, but if you have children in your life, I have to share a new French Toast Stick recipe that I made for my grandsons and we ALL loved!

French Toast sticks that you buy frozen are usually tough, but these are soft and easy for little ones to hold and chew.  Take a look!

French Toast sticks

This came from another Gooseberry Cookbook, which are some of my favorites!

French Toast Sticks

4-5 Slices bread
3 C Rice crispy cereal, crushed
1 T Sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs, beaten
1 C Milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 C butter, Melted

Cut each slice of bread into 4 strips.  Combine crushed cereal, sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl; set aside.

Mix together eggs, milk, vanilla and salt in another bowl.  Dip each bread stick into egg mixture and then (quickly) remove and dip into sugar coating.  Place sticks on an ungreased 13 x 9 baking pan, pour melted butter over top.  Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden.  Makes 16 – 20 sticks.

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I served these with warm syrup.  Yum!  They were scrumptious!

Prep the ingredients the night before for a quick breakfast in the morning.  Then when you’re ready to bake, do the dipping into the egg and cereal mixtures and place in the oven.

Now, don’t you wish it was time for breakfast???!!!!

Denise Signature 150 px

breakfast · Make-Ahead

(L)Oven Monday – Baked Oatmeal Cups

Oatmeal Cups 1

Hi Friends!  Happy Monday and Happy May 1st!  I hope you all had a great week last week.  I had a restful time away, but am happy to be back here with you today sharing another great recipe!

I’ve shared my recipe here for Baked Oatmeal – it’s a great do-ahead dish.  It’s nice to have on hand for a couple of days.  But there are times when I don’t have that made up and I need to eat something before heading out the door in the morning.  I’ve recently found a recipe for a Breakfast Oatmeal Cup that is a baked oatmeal made in muffin tins, creating the perfect single-serving size.  Once baked, they can be kept in the fridge for a several days, but what I’ve been doing is freezing them and popping one into the microwave for those busy mornings.  I put one into a bowl and add milk, just like I do with my other Baked Oatmeal.  It’s so delicious, and keeps me from getting that low-sugar drop later on.  This is so good, and lots better than regular oatmeal!  I love the texture of these as opposed to the traditional bowl of oats.


You could add any variety of fruits and nuts.  This recipe is one of my favorite combos – Strawberry-Banana.  So good!  Here’s the recipe:

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Cups

Ingredients

  • 4 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2⅓ cup low-fat milk
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup pure maple syrup – you could use honey instead, if desired
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries
  • 1 banana, sliced
  • ½ cup sliced almonds or walnuts

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Add all ingredients to a large bowl and mix well until everything is combined.
  2. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray and scoop oatmeal mixture in using a large ice cream scoop or a ¼ measuring cup. The mixture will be a little watery, so it’s important to mix well before each scoop to make sure you get an even combination of milk and oats.
  3. Bake oatmeal cups for 20 minutes, or until cooked through.
  4. Keep in fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days or in the freezer for 3 months.

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To eat from frozen state, thaw overnight in fridge or in microwave, then warm for about 30 seconds.  Add milk and enjoy!

What do you keep on hand for breakfast on busy days?

Denise Signature 150 px

 

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Bread · breakfast · cakes · Cooking · dessert · Dinner · Easter · entertaining · main dish · memories · Side dish · Sunday Dinner

(L)Oven Monday – Easter Dinner 2017 Recap

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If you’ve been reading my blog more than a week, you know how I treasure Sunday dinner.  It makes my heart sooo happy! But how does Sunday dinner get even better?  It’s when Sunday dinner is Easter Sunday dinner.  On top of good food, there’s the blessing of remembering Christ’s resurrection from the dead and celebrating that truth that He lives!

So, yesterday, we did indeed have a big Sunday meal, but we started with a wonderful church service where Christ was exalted! We sang of His resurrection and heard God’s truth about how to be sure you can have eternal life!  Then we came home for dinner and included our daughter and son-in-law and a couple of other special people.  We also incorporated a few family traditions, which brings memories and makes memories.  It was a great day!

Here’s the menu:

 Brown Sugar Glazed Ham
Ruth’s Chris’ Sweet Potato Casserole
Tarragon Asparagus – New recipe
Deviled Eggs
Caesar Salad in Parmesan Bowls
Bunny-Shaped Breadsticks – New recipe
Coconut Cake with Lemon Filling

Let me roll the pictures so you can have a peek into our day and see that I also incorporated all the principles I’ve recently shared about Sunday dinner!

I worked early in the week and got the Coconut Cake baked and layers put in the freezer.  Then at the end of the week, I made the lemon curd and the icing.  It simplifies the process so much!  By Saturday night here’s what was already prepped:

The cake, the rolls, the Sweet potato Casserole, Deviled eggs, and the salad ingredients were totally ready. The table was all set, too.  I also had the roasting pan for the ham set out and ready to bake the main entree.

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When I got home from church it only required to put the finishing touches on everything and bake the casserole.

Here’s how things turned out on Sunday~

Caesar Salad in Parmesan Cups –

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Sweet Potato Casserole – The best in my book!

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Terragon Asparagus – This was new, and it was pretty good.  My asparagus wasn’t as fresh as I’ve ever gotten, so I’m going to try this again before giving it a final verdict!

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Bunny Breadsticks – Another new recipe.  These were fantastic on Saturday when I made them, but they don’t really do well the next day.  Sooo, I won’t make these for Sunday any more, but I sure will use this recipe for other days when I have time to make them for that day.  They were delicious right out of the oven!!  And how cute are they???? They can be baked into regular bread sticks if you want to make them other times of the year!

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Coconut Cake

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One tradition that we’ve had for years is Easter sunrise service outside at home.  That was a challenge (and very cold) when we lived in Indiana, but we would don our coats and head to the tree house where we would have our own Sunrise service!  Then we would come inside and have Cinnamon rolls and scrambled eggs.  Now that it’s just my husband and me, we simply eat breakfast on the patio and read Scripture together.  It’s usually warm enough that we don’t shiver, thank the Lord!  Here’s what we had yesterday:

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We had Fresh farm eggs, Prosciutto, Cream Cheese Coffee Cake, Fresh fruit and Coffee.
It was a great way to start Easter Sunday!  This is a reminder that traditions aren’t just for when your kids are at home.  Keep those traditions going even when they’re gone.  It will continue to build strong home ties, and will also give your grown kids the security of knowing that you’re still making the most of your marriage!

So, another Easter dinner is in the (memory) books, and I’ll have to say, it’s a memorable chapter!  I thank the Lord for the blessing of celebrating our Savior’s life and getting to do it at church AND at home around the Sunday dinner table.

Did you have Easter dinner?  Did you cook?  What made it special for your family?

With love from my country kitchen,

Denise Signature 150 px