Saturday, June 25, 2011

Kimmie in Real Life (Week 3)

Sorry this is WAY behind schedule. I was informed on Sunday  June 19th that I was on the list to be a leader for our youth group outing to the Manti Pageant from June 21st-23rd and so I was frantically spending my Monday afternoon getting us all packed and getting everything watered well in our yard before we headed out for 3 days, thus, I have had no computer time for the past week.

I really enjoy this challenge 

as I don’t have any other time in my year that I document all that I do in a week and it is fun to see all of the “little” things I do to make it through the week and how frugal I am, but in a good way, by creatively making sure nothing goes to waste.  

This week we also put our Vita Mix to use a little bit more by making 
Tortilla Soup and tried our hand at making almond milk as well.

Here are the 
food highlights of our week!
We spent all Saturday working out in the yard and while we worked I had a large pot of beans cooking on the stove that I had soaked the night before.  I set aside 6 cups of beans for Baked Bean Casserole and froze the remaining 8 cups of beans and liquid for future Beans and Ham-hocks.    
 Baked Beans 
 were definitely one of the favorite meals this week.
This week I made up a batch of homemade Ketchup
when I made up Baked Beans.   I have been trying to cut out the "high fructose corn syrup from our diet and MANY things including ketchup are loaded with this.  This is really yummy and while it doesn't have the same texture as store bought ketchup, it pretty much tastes the same.
Here for homemade Ketchup recipe.
Green Smoothie ingredients plus pineapple core...
equals perfect!

We filled our Vita Mix with a few tomatoes, carrot, celery, large slice of onion and bell pepper, large chunk of cheese, handful of clilantro, 1 cup hot water, 1 tsp of chicken bouillon and 2 Tbsp. taco seasoning and made a batch of Tortilla Soup that was very filling and much healthier than opening up a can of Campbells tomato soup.
I threw in a handful of cooked pinto beans at the end.  
SO yummy served with breadsticks.
Another green smoothie with pineapple all blended up 
and served with leftover pretzels made HAPPY kids!

Helpful tip for Cantaloupe…
don’t throw away your seeds after you cut it up. Save the seeds and blend them in your next smoothie.  Blending up the seeds in a smoothie makes a drink full of magnesium, iron, protein and antioxidants.
We enjoyed this smoothie SO much 
that we made it for lunch AND dinner!

I love when I have a baking day and bake bread
  because I always freeze a few loaves and those came in handy this week…
I pulled out bread and sliced it up to make French Toast 
and pulled out another loaf of bread, sliced it up and made grilled tuna/cheese sandwiches.

Never underestimate the power of Pasta Salad. 
I love making pasta salad in the summer  as it is pretty much a complete meal in one and I love it when we go on an outing and we can take a smaller cooler as we don’t have to pack so much food.  
Pasta salad, some fruit and a muffin make a great lightweight lunch!
This was Jade and Tracy's favorite this week!
We ventured out and made some almond milk in our Vita Mix, 
but I tweaked the recipe as it was very grainy and wasn’t smooth, but I got it where it is really yummy.  
Soak 1 cup almonds over night. 
The next morning drain off the water, put almonds in your Vita Mix 
with 5 dates, 
3 cups water and 
1-2 tsp vanilla and blend on high for 2 minutes. 
I then put this in our milk pitcher with 
1 quart cold water and ½ cup dry milk powder, 
mixed it well and it was a mild, creamy milk and was delicious in our morning steel cut oats.  
This is a great way to make milk using your food storage
that’s just not straight dry milk powder and the almonds add more protein.  

 Jade LOVES this and has begged me to make another batch this next week.
We used 2 cups of almond milk plus ¼ cup dry milk powder, 1/3 heaping cup sugar and 2 tsp vanilla and made Almond Milk Ice Cream in our “Freeze and Play Ice Cream ball”…it was delicious!  
(here for last years fun and adventure with this)

I love my rice cooker 
as our favorite rice is brown rice
but it takes 40 minutes to cook on the stove and I sometimes don't have time to "tend" rice on the stove. I just fill the bottom of the rice cooker with water add in 2 cups brown rice and 2-1/2 cups water to bowl, set the timer for 65 minutes and come back to perfectly cooked rice!
I love making up Tracy’s Sweet and Sour Chicken Stir Fry
lots of veggies, small amount of chicken, perfectly flavored sauce served over brown rice…
this makes our top 5 family favorites as well!

Never waste your pineapple juice....
save it aside and use it in your smoothies or homemade carrot juice,
also freeze leftover pineapple for future dishes!

 Preparing for tomorrow today…
I pulled out some muffins out of my freezer to serve with our pasta salad for lunch and my kids begged for more and so I went and got a quart of applesauce from our food storage and made up another 3 batches of muffins to freeze for future lunches/snacks.  I freeze them 2 muffins per Zip-loc sandwich bag and each bag is one serving.

This time saver is wonderful for days when you have some extra time to bake so you have things to pull out on more hectic days.  I think these muffins are my kids favorite!  (it’s funny that they call them “Bran Muffins”, even though they are Applesauce muffins…the whole wheat flour in them must resemble bran to them).
Jade is my "adventure" kid 
as he loves anything different and out of the ordinary, especially "Vegetarian" meals.  
He was looking through our Vita-Mix recipe book and saw a recipe for carrot juice and begged me to make some up.
SO, that is what we served for lunch on Friday along with artisan bread, tuna and sliced tomatoes.
This wasn't such a hit with Ethan, but Jade and I loved it and he has begged me to make more this coming week as well!

June 12th - 18th
French Toast, Grapes, Egg/ham scramble
Sloppy Joes, Carrot sticks, fresh fruit
Chocolate Sour Cream Cookies

Steel Cut Oats
(Tracy) leftover sloppy joes, fresh fruit, Chocolate Sour Cream Cookies
(kids and me) Green Smoothie, cheese bread, bananas
Vita Mix Tomato/veggie soup, bread sticks/pretzels
Old Fashioned Cookies

Steel Cut Oats
(Tracy) banana, green grapes, bread sticks, leftover soup, old fashioned cookies
(kids and me) Bananas, Green smoothie, bread sticks, old fashioned cookies
Baked Bean Casserole, tomato slices, cottage cheese, fresh fruit


Steel Cut Oats
(Tracy)fresh fruit, baked beans, tomatoes, Old Fashioned Cookies
(kids)Cantaloupe Smoothie, whole wheat toast, baked beans
Cantaloupe smoothie and tuna pattie melts for dinner with tomato slices

Steel Cut Oats
Pasta salad, sliced tomatoes, applesauce muffins
apple slices, toast with honey butter
Sweet and Sour Chicken Stir Fry over brown rice
Lemon Bars

Steel Cut Oats
(Tracy...ate lunch with a co-worker)
(Kids and me) Open faced tuna sandwiches on Artisan Bread with tomatoes, carrot juice made in our Vita Mix
(kids dinner) Leftover Stir Fry and baked beans, Lemon Bars
(Tracy and I split a Pork Salad at Cafe Rio on our date)

Pancakes and eggs
Leftover Stir Fry
Almond Milk Ice Cream and Lemon Bars

 Links for recipes used this week…
Lemon Bars
So grateful to have the opportunity to “Stretch” and to put the quote by Percy Cerutty to the test…

"You only ever grow as a human being if you're outside your comfort zone”.


Garden of Egan said...

Woohoo!!! I love having another installment of Real Life with Kimmie.

I have my DIL's and people at work reading your blog.
You are truly amazing.

Awesome that you could go to Manti with the youth. I bet that was a wonderful experience.

Cherie said...

How fun that you could go to the Manti Pageant with the youth - that would be so fun - I haven't seen that pageant since I was in college!

Love all your meals - You have got the system down pat!

I also try to not use products with High Fructose Corn Syrup (so bad for you) and I recently found that "HUnts" brand of Ketchup has no High Fructose Corn Syrup and no artificial ingredients or preservatives. So I think that some of the food producers are listening!!

Hope you are having a good week!! Keep on cooking :-D