Well, we have made it through the first full week of September and I am feeling a sense of accomplishment because I got 5 different items in the freezer, ready for when baby gets here! Here are the recipes you might have missed:
And here is a bonus recipe. This is great for Saturday morning brunches or having the girls over last-minute for an impromptu breakfast! It is always a hit around here! I get compliments on this recipe all the time, including the best compliment: asking for the recipe!
Overnight Oven Baked French Toast (adapted from Southern Living)
1 (1 lb.) French bread loaf
1/4 c. butter, softened (approx.)
4 large eggs
1 c. milk
1/4 c. sugar
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
Cut bread into slices the desired thickness you prefer. If you are making to freeze, you might want to make sure the slices fit into your toaster.
Spread butter evenly over both sides of each slice of bread.
Arrange bread in a n ungreased 13 x 9 inch baking dish (you may need two depending on the thickness of your bread slices).
Whisk together eggs and remaining ingredients; pour over bread, pressing slices down. cover and chill for 8 hours
Remove bread slices from baking dish and place onto lightly greased baking sheets
Bake uncovered at 350 F for 45 minutes (check regularly for smaller slices) or until golden.
To serve: sprinkle with cinnamon and powdered sugar and serve with your favorite syrup.
To Freeze: Place slices in a freezer safe Ziploc bag, seal and freeze.
To Thaw: Take out as many pieces as desired and warm them from frozen in your toaster or toaster oven.
This week will be focused basically on breakfast and snack items. I will be making muffins for a couple of days and a couple of desserts on other days. Today’s recipe is Morning Muffins.
I have made other muffins similar to these before and decided to change-up the recipe I had a little bit to make them a little more appealing (to us) and give them the illusion of healthful-ness (yes, that is a new word…you get to make up new words in your 8th month of pregnancy). I also doubled the recipe because I love to have muffins on hand to take for church snacks or Bible study snacks.
These are really easy to throw together if you have the ingredients on hand. I think they took just 15 minutes to prepare and get in the oven.
So here is the recipe:
Morning Muffins (adapted from Taste of Home)
1/4 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. brown sugar, packed
1 c. sour cream (you could also use Greek yogurt, if you prefer)
1 c. shredded carrots
1/2 c. flaked coconut
3/4 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 c. chopped pecans
Cream butter and sugar in a mixer bowl. Add eggs and sour cream; beat well.
Stir in carrots and coconut.
Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl; stir into creamed mixture until just moistened. Fold in pecans.
Fill muffin tins lined with paper muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake at 375 F for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the muffin comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack.
To Freeze: Cool completely, place muffins on a baking sheet and flash freeze for a couple of hours. Place in a freezer safe bag or wrap in foil. Freeze for up to 3 months.
To Use from Frozen: Thaw at room temperature. Serve warm (and with butter) if desired.
Freezer Cooking Tip of the Day: Plan on only freezing your ingredients for recipes one time. For example, if you are planning on buying bread to make sandwiches in bulk (like I am doing next week), don’t buy it ahead of time, freeze it, thaw it, and then freeze it again. Just buy it fresh, use it in the recipe and freeze it one time. This applies to every ingredient I can think of. OR if you are using something from frozen in a recipe (like chicken or beef), be sure to cook it in your recipe and then freeze it. Do not just thaw it out, make up a recipe that does not require cooking, and then freeze it again. Your results will not be desirable.
I took the day off of cooking yesterday so we could celebrate our 8th anniversary. It was a nice and much-needed break. But I am really feeling like the baby is coming soon, so back to the kitchen I go!
I am really excited about today’s recipe for Monkey Muffins – muffins with peanut butter, banana, and chocolate chips – and they are little! So fun! I think G will really love these! I am thinking these will be perfect for a quick snack for G and for any of her friends that happen to stop by after her little brother/sister arrives. I doubled the batch of these because I need to take snacks for church in a couple of weeks and think these will be great when paired with some fruit. Continue Reading
I am so excited that today’s recipe was so easy to put together because I needed a little extra help around the house today. We have a teething toddler who refuses to sleep today and I have less and less energy to get things done. This recipe says it takes 7 minutes to put together and it is true…not bad when you have a craving for some thing sweet and not a lot of energy. I also had everything I needed for this recipe on hand, so that was nice!
The recipe is for Peanut Butter Bars. I adapted the recipe from a Southern Living cookbook. I also doubled it so that we would have lots of these on hand because everybody likes peanut butter around here (including D, who doesn’t like most desserts). Here’s the scoop on today’s freezer addition:
Peanut Butter Bars
1/2 c. quick-cooking oats
1/3 c. self-rising flour
1/2 c. butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 jar (12 oz.) peanut butter (your preference of chunky or smooth)
Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 13 x 9 inch pan.
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, stir until just blended. Spread mixture in prepared pan.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let cool in pan completely before cutting into bars.
To Freeze: Once you have cut them into bars, place bars on a baking sheet and flash freeze. Transfer to a freezer-safe container.
To Use from Frozen: Thaw desired quantity of bars at room temperature. Serve with milk (they really need it!).
Freezer Tip of the Day: Consider making a list of what is in your freezer and posting it somewhere on the outside of the freezer. This will help you to remember what is in there without standing with the door open to try to figure it out. To go over the top, you could designate different zones inside the freezer and place like foods in those zones (i.e. breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinners, etc.).
Since we live in the desert of Southern California, I am happy that today’s recipe did not require me to turn on the stove, oven, or microwave. We are still in the 100’s around here and with the extra pregnancy pounds, it can get pretty hot in this kitchen!!
So, to add to our stockpile today, I made Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough in Daddy and Baby sizes. (I don’t have a medium size scoop or we could call them the 3 little bears cookies). D is so funny about dessert: he doesn’t like very many of them. So when he does like something, I really try to make it for him as a special treat. When planning to do the September Stockpile, I figured he would like to have some cookie dough on hand. But I also thought it would be nice to be able to have fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies for G for snacks on cool (hopefully soon) fall afternoons! Here is the recipe I use:
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough:
3/4 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. brown sugar, packed
1 and 1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 and 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
1 pkg. (12 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
Beat butter and sugars in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, blend in very well.
Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl; gradually add to butter mixture, beating well.
Stir in chocolate chips.
To freeze: Use desired scoop to make evenly sized portions and drop spoonfuls onto a large baking sheet lined with paper. Flash freeze in freezer for 2-3 hours. Transfer to freezer storage bags.
To use from frozen: D will just eat these after letting them thaw for a few minutes. But to bake them: let thaw overnight in fridge. Bake at 350 F for 8-14 minutes on lightly greased cookie sheets. Let cool on wire racks.
Today’s Freezer Cooking Tip: When planning on doing a batch (or two) of a recipe consider different ways to break it down to freeze. You might consider taking an entrée dish and splitting it up if you have a smaller family or making one large side dish item and breaking it into a few different containers to have the side dish on hand for a few meals. Today, I made large and small cookie dough scoops based on the needs/wants of our family; and it didn’t take any extra time to double the batch.
And we’re back! Working on filling up the freezer brings us to a recipe I am really excited to share with you. This recipe for Pumpkin Scones resembles the pumpkin scones from Starbucks…but I have a feeling they are going to be better! I am so glad these are going to be in my freezer that I may have to take one out and make it before the baby gets here!
I LOVE pumpkin flavored things, so these will be great for breakfast during this early baby season. Oh, and if someone happens to stop by for a breakfast, I might make one for them! The nice thing is I can make as may at a time as I would like – one, two, or six – since the dough is what is frozen. Continue Reading