Menus


~ appetizers ~
Meatballs
Cheese chunks, Cashews, Salami

~ beverages ~
Pop – Water – Sweet Tea
24 cans Coke & 4 liters of Pop

~ soup ~
Beef Barley Soup

~ main ~
Turkey & Dressing
Glazed Ham

~ sides ~
Mashed Potatoes
Turkey & Brown Gravies
Sweet Potato Casserole
Green Bean Casserole
Corn Pudding
Jellied Cranberry Sauce
Deviled Eggs

~ bread/rolls ~
Dinner Rolls
Pull Apart Bread

~ desserts ~
Pumpkin Pie w/ Whip Cream
Cherry Pie w/ Vanilla Ice Cream
Cheesecake
Chocolate & White Cupcakes

~ snacks ~
Chili Cheese Frito’s
Cheese Pringles
Doritos
Potato Chips & Dip
Crackers
Tangerines

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Sweet Potato Casserole

Mix the following ingredients well and pour into buttered pan:

  • 4 cups mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/3 stick Parkay (melted)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Topping:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup Parkay (melted)
  • 1 cup pecans or walnuts pieces

Crumble topping evenly over sweet potato mixture. Bake at 350° for 35-45 minutes uncovered.

Enjoy!!

Thanksgiving defined as: A public acknowledgment or celebration of divine goodness; also, a day set apart for religious services, specially to acknowledge the goodness of God, either in any remarkable deliverance from calamities or danger, or in the ordinary dispensation of his bounties. ~ Webster & me!

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What are you doing today to prepare for a Mother’s Day gift or celebration?

My daughter Mandy wants to help me paint the bathroom at her Dad’s shop. An early Father’s Day gift is what I’m thinking. It seems that may be more for him than me. Although, at this point I could use some serious motivation in that department. So from where I’m sitting, its a two-fer. Bonus!

Brandy, asked what I wanted for Mother’s Day a while back, I told her what I always tell my children, “I don’t need anything. But, you can always check my Wish-List or Mother’s Day Boards on Pinterest.” And Mom’s I do think it’s nice to have these idea boards, so you don’t end up with another coffee mug or  macaroni necklace. Just sayin’! Are you making something today (or are your children making something)?

Are you planning a menu for Mom’s Day brunch?
If so, I suggest keeping it simple. Mom doesn’t want to spend her afternoon cleaning up the mess in the aftermath.

Here is a quick & easy sample menu:

MENU
Meatball & Provolone Sliders
Vegetable Tray
Cole Slaw
Cheese chunks w crackers
Chips & dip
Cashews
Coffee – Sweet Tea
Try to include a dip of her favorite ice cream. -(Mine’s Butter Pecan, but Mint Chip is nice too.)

or

Instead of the Meatballs, you could make my Big Sandwich. Its one my families favorites.
Move oven rack to the lowest rack position in your oven. Preheat oven Broiler to its Lowest setting. Cut the side a loaf of Italian or French bread the full length of the loaf without separating the two sides. Open the bread and lay flat on a large foil lined cookie sheet. Overlap slices of roast beef on both sides of the bread. Spoon on & spread Pizza Quick sauce or marinara. Lay slices of Provolone cheese on top. Place under broiler. Bake only until the cheese is brown & bubbly. Remove from the oven. Toss on shredded lettuce & sliced tomatoes. Quick & easy.

Tell us one thing you’re doing today to get ready for Mother’s Day!

My mother had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it. ~ Mark Twain

As I’m preparing for the upcoming Holiday’s and trying not to stress out about all the changes the house and our personal lives will endure over the next few months, I find that flexibility & organization are the key to my sanity at this time of the year. I have all of my Christmas gifts bought and mostly wrapped. Well, if you can call putting them all in Sally’s shopper bags, wrapped. I find it the easiest way for me to do our “Christmas Eve Eve Party.”

Our lives have undergone so many changes over the past few years, the kids marriages with families of their own but, I still want them all together for Christmas, preferably under my roof.  The only way to achieve this is to be flexible so we’ve created our own Holiday aka Christmas Eve Eve. It was originally met with great contention by my oldest son, but he too, has come around. Its hard to juggle the In-laws and Outlaws at the Holiday’s so less stress makes us much happier people.

It also makes me think of my mom, past Thanksgiving’s at Mom’s & Grandma Dorothy’s house(s.) I’m sure everyone remembers the story I’ve told many times, about our dinner table breaking in half on year, it almost hitting my oldest sisters, sister-in-laws 2 year old daughter that was sitting under our table. They used to use the table-leg to hold the back of a child’s dress or shirt down, that way they couldn’t move. Instant babysitter. Not to worry, they had toys or a coloring book to keep them busy. Rarely ever fussed, because they were in the same room as the grown-ups. Now they just use play pens.

I’ll drive by Grandma’s house now and again, and I have to laugh. It seems so tiny, but never did as a child. She always made room. Her house was always clean and freshly decorated for each impending Holiday. To this day, I still have no idea where she kept all of those decorations. Anyway, back to dinner. Her table was freshly set for each person to sit down, always her fine china, minimal food on the table, mostly sliced bread and butter, gravy, things like that, but the kitchen was covered. She’d (or our mom’s) would make your plate in the kitchen and then either you or she would walk it to the table.

Her house was small, but her heart was big, the dining room table was turned sideways in the room, to allow for 8 people or more comfortably, we couldn’t all eat at the same time, so she asked us to come in about an hour apart, that way when people got up, you could sit and talk while you ate & ate, no one was ever rushed. We also had no idea whom we’d be eating with. I always enjoyed eating with my Uncle Brock. He was so funny, he’d mock her as she was talking, making jokes and taking the food or dessert off our plates that he knew we weren’t going to eat(gooseberry pie – yuck), so we could get up from the table(as was the custom back then). Then he’d laugh as she fussed at him for wasting food. Later, he’d wink at us, letting us know that he was okay with taking the heat.

It was never too crowded. She always made room. Ladies sat in the kitchen, gossiping as usual. Grandpa would be in the living room watching TV, either Football or Horsing Racing aka taking a nap. Can’t remember what most of us kids did, we just filtered back and forth, watching Grandma cook and or hand-wash all of her dishes, she didn’t have a dishwasher.  This went on all day. I loved to watch her boil dumplings, she’d use a fresh chicken or turkey with its eggs still inside and they’d float to the top. She’d scoop them up and offer them to us kids as we yelled, “Gross!” But the truth is, I loved it, it was so good. Its the goofy things that you remember the most.

So as I’m trying to decide what to make or not to make this year, I try to remember its only about being together. Nothing else matters, if the gravies brown or who likes what kind of cake, every one will get fed. Spend time together and hopefully, when I’m gone they will carry on these traditions for as long as the Lord tarries. And, know that I did everything in my power to show them the same love that their Great-Grandparents showed me. That it the tradition.

So I’m going to share this years menu with you, and my mom’s recipe for Ambrosia Fruit Salad. To be honest, no one here likes it but me. I make it every year, just because my mom did; it was her favorite. Thank you Mom, for all of your inspiration and unwittingly all of the memories you’ve helped me make with my children, and grandchildren and hopefully, maybe even their grandchildren. I’ll try and keep your memory alive, as I share, all of the things that we talked about and did together while we cooked. I still think of the stories you told me about Grandma Elvie and how she decorated her deviled eggs, every time, I make them.

The “Small Things,” are truly the best memories.

Thanksgiving Dinner Menu

~ appetizers ~
Meatballs
Bacon Wrapped Asparagus
Relish Tray

~ beverages ~
Pop – Water – Sweet Tea
24 cans Coke

~ soup ~
Beef Barley Soup

~ main ~
Turkey & Dressing
Glazed Ham

~ sides ~
Mashed Potatoes
Turkey & Brown Gravies
Baked Beans
Sweet Potato Casserole
Green Bean Casserole
Corn Pudding
Jellied Cranberry Sauce
Deviled Eggs

~ bread/rolls ~
Dinner Rolls
Pull Apart Bread

~ desserts ~
Pumpkin Pie w/ Whip Cream
Blackberry Cobbler
Cherry Cheesecake
Chocolate & White Cupcakes
Mom’s Ambrosia Fruit Salad

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Ambrosia Fruit Salad

INGREDIENTS

2 cans or 1 lg can of fruit cocktail, well drained
1 sm can of mandarin oranges, drained
1/2 cup shredded coconut
8 oz tub whipped topping, thawed (save container to store leftovers or put half the dessert back in and pop into the fridge to send home with someone. Trust me, it never all gets eaten.)
*maraschino cherries, drained and halved as a garnish (optional)

DIRECTIONS

In a medium size bowl , toss in the first three ingredients. Fold in the cool whip. Place a few sliced maraschino cherries on top as a garnish.
You can add pecans or walnuts if you like – I usually toss a few on top of mine, just because, but I never put them in my dessert. Some people add a few mini marshmallows if you like those in it, mom did on occasion, but not usually. The cherries were always my favorite. I’d pick them out and try to get the most. sh

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Ah! on Thanksgiving day….
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before.
What moistens the lips and what brightens the eye?
What calls back the past, like the rich pumpkin pie?
~John Greenleaf Whittier

MENU

~appetizers~
Meatballs
Shrimp cocktail
Cheese chunks w crackers
Chips & dip
Cashews

~ beverages ~
Pop – Water – Sweet Tea
Raspberry punch

~ main ~
Ham
Beef smoked sausage w/ sauerkraut

~ sides ~
Sweet Potato Casserole
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy
Green Bean Casserole
Pork stuffing
Corn pudding, Potato Salad & Baked Beans (Shirley’s bringing)
Deviled Eggs
Dinner Rolls

~ desserts ~
Cherry Pie w/ vanilla ice cream
Coconut Cake

Candy Buffet

BAKED HAM WITH COLA

INGREDIENTS
1 (20 oz.) can sliced pineapple
1 fully cooked smoke ham, whole or half
2-4 c. (depending on size of ham) cola beverage (I use one can per half)

DIRECTIONS
Arrange pineapple on ham; secure with wood picks. Place ham in shallow pan. Pour cola over ham; bake 15 minutes per pound in preheated 350 degree oven, basting with pan juices occasionally. Remove to warm platter and let stand 20 minutes before carving.

Optional: Score ham with a sharp knife in a crisscross pattern about 1 inch apart. Insert whole cloves into the top of the ham instead of using pineapple, pour coke over top and bake as usual.

My mom used to score the top and then hold the pineapple in place with the whole cloves, before dumping a can of cola over top.  Its all good.

Easter is the demonstration of God that life is essentially spiritual and timeless. ~ Charles M. Crowe

MENU
Honey Glazed Ham, sliced
Cheesy Hashbrown Bake
Green Beans
Rolls w/ butter
Grandma’s Cherry pie w/ vanilla ice cream

Grandma’s Cherry Pie

INGREDIENTS
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1-1/3 tablespoons butter (about 4 teaspoons)
1 14.5-ounce can pie cherries, NOT cherry pie filling (look for Dark Sweet Pitted Cherries packed in water)
Pastry for double-crust pie

DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven to 425°F.
In saucepan, combine sugar, flour, cinnamon and undrained cherries. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens and boils (about 6 or 7 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in almond extract.
Pour mixture into a 9-inch unbaked pie shell. Dot with butter. Cover with top crust, seal edges and *crimp. If using a lattice crust, allow filling to cool before applying it. If a lattice crust is not used, put one or several vents in the crust ( I cut bird-tracks /\ /\ /\ forming a cross on top of my pies, because my mom always did). Bake at 425°F for 30 to 35 minutes until crust is golden brown.

Prep time: 25 minutes; Cooking time: 30-35 minutes; Total time: 55 minutes

*Crimping is done by pushing the outside edge of our pie crust between your pointer finger and thumb on your left hand using the tip of the pointer finger on your right hand. <- repeating all the way around the pie, then cut off the excess pie dough with a sharp knife.

Man is so made that when anything fires his soul, impossibilities vanish. ~ Jean de La Fontaine

MENU
BAKED CHICKEN & SHRIMP SUPREME
Potato Casserole
Normandy Blend Vegetables
House Salad
Rolls/Butter
Beverage

BAKED CHICKEN & SHRIMP SUPREME

INGREDIENTS
1 c. butter
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. Accent
2 tbsp. cut chives
4 c. cooked chicken, diced
2/3 c. diced pimientos
1/2 c. melted butter
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. paprika
2 cans button mushrooms (lg. can)
2 qt. milk
4 c. cooked shrimp
8 c. cooked rice
1 c. flour

DIRECTIONS
Melt butter and blend in flour, salt, pepper, Accent, paprika and chives. Drain broth from mushrooms into measuring cup and add enough milk to make 2 quarts. Add milk mixture to butter mixture. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until smooth and thickened. Add mushroom crowns, chicken, shrimp and pimientos. Line two oblong baking dishes, 8″x12″x2″ with rice. Fill center with chicken mixture, brush rice rim with melted butter. Unless baked immediately, cover with plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate.

Bake at 325 degrees for 15 to 35 minutes, or until bubbling hot. Time will depend on the temperature of the dish when it is put in the oven.

Serves 20

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That sir which serves and seeks for gain,
And follows but for form,
Will pack when it begins to rain,
And leave thee in the storm.
But I will tarry; the fool will stay,
And let the wise man fly:
The knave turns fool that runs away;
The fool, no knave, perdy.
~ KING LEAR
Act II The Fool, scene iv

MENU
Chicken Kebobs
Rice Pilaf
Greek Style Green Beans
Baklava
Roll and Butter
Beverage

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Chicken Kebobs Recipe

INGREDIENTS
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, trimmed of any fat and cut into cubes
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 small onion, grated
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon dried or fresh thyme leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon paprika
10 (10-inch) wooden or metal skewers

DIRECTIONS
Marinate the chicken cubes in a glass or ceramic bowl or pan with the olive oil, lemon juice, onion, cinnamon, cardamom, thyme, salt, pepper, cumin (if using), ginger, and paprika for 6 hours, covered, in the refrigerator, turning the cubes occasionally.
Preheat a gas grill for 15 minutes on high or prepare a hot charcoal fire. Skewer the chicken cubes so they touch each other but do not press against each other. If possible, use a skewer rack so the chicken grills without touching the grilling grate. Grill until golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes, turning frequently. Serve hot.

True freedom lies in the realization and calm acceptance of the fact that there may very well be no perfect answer. ~ Allen Reid McGinnis

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