Archive | September, 2011

Granola Goodness

29 Sep

Some days I just feel fat!


Let’s face it.  I’m a girl who LOVES to bake.

So it’s pretty much inevitable I’ll have those days.

Lately I’ve been trying to eat better.

Be more conscious about the foods I’m putting into my body.

This has lead to a slight obsession with granola.

Now people usually love one of two types of granola.

Granola chunks that cling together or individual granola pieces perfect for sprinkling.

I live in the second camp.

I don’t want big chunky pieces.

I want to be able to sprinkle my granola over yogurt.

Or pour milk over it and eat it like cereal.

Even grab a handful as a snack.

I want you to enjoy some granola too!


2 1/2 C. Whole Wheat Quick Cooking Oats
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ginger
1/2 C. Honey
1/2 C. Walnuts (feel free to substitute your favorite or mix several varieties)
1/2 C. Oil
1/2 – 1 C. Dried fruit (I used cranberries, use what you like)

Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil. Leave enough foil on the ends to allow you to pick the foil up off of the baking sheet once baking is complete. Pre-heat your oven to 350. In a large bowl mix nuts, spices, oil, and honey. Spread the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Stir frequently during baking. The edges will brown very quickly. Remove from oven and lift the foil from the baking sheet to stop the baking process. Allow granola to cool. Stir in fruit. Sore in an airtight container.


Pear Cranberry and Walnut Pie

20 Sep

It’s coming….

Can you feel it?


There’s just a hint of it in the air.

It teases me as I take my son to the bus stop every morning.

I feel it nipping at my legs as the sun sets.

I see it in the random crunchy leaf on the ground.

And my stomach is craving the warm filling foods it will bring.

Are you ready?

I know I am.

Pear Cranberry and Walnut Pie ~ (adapted from this recipe Family Circle Nov., 07)

For the Crust

2 1/2 C. All-Purpose flour
1 C. Butter (I used salted)
Ice Water

For the Filling

3 T. Butter
4-5 Pears, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1/3 C. Brown sugar, packed
1/4 C. Dried cranberries
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp Cornstarch
1 tsp Lemon juice
1/4 c. Chopped walnuts
1 Egg white
1 1/2 tsp Milk
1 T. Cinnamon sugar

**You’ll want to prepare your crust in advance as it needs time to rest in the refrigerator before it is rolled out.

To prepare the crust place the flour and butter in the food processor. Process until it resembles coarse peas. Gradually add ice water a tablespoon at a time until a ball starts to form. Avoid adding to much water and/or handling the dough to much. Shape into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 5 hours or overnight.

To prepare the filling add the butter to a nonstick skillet. Using medium heat allow butter to melt, add pear slices and saute’ until tender and beginning to brown. Stir in the brown sugar, cranberries, and cinnamon. Turn the heat to low. Cook until the sugar is dissolved. In a small bowl mix the corn starch and lemon juice. Stir in the cornstarch mixture. Cook for about a minute until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat and add the walnuts.

Remove the pie crust from the refrigerator and divide into 2 equal pieces. Return one to the fridge while you work with the first. Roll out into a 10″ circle. Place in the bottom of a 9″ pie plate. Shape into the bottom and up the sides.

Pour pear mixture into prepared crust. Roll out the other half of the crust. Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes in the center of the crust, if desired. You can use your shapes to garnish the top of the pie. (If you don’t cut out shapes you’ll need to cut slits into the top crust in order for it to vent.) Place over the top of pear mixture, trim edges if required. Crimp edges to seal. Mix egg white and milk. Brush over the top crust and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake at 400 for 18-20 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Garnish with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Mexican Lasagna

13 Sep

The other night I dreamed about my Grandaddy.

In my dream we were at the ball field.

Just outside of the dugout.

I looked across the crowd and he was just standing there….

taller than everyone else.

and when I went to look for him he was gone….

Maybe I’ve seen one to many pictures of kids at the ball field and it has me all nostalgic.

Maybe I’m just missing my Grandaddy.

Maybe I know my sweet Granny isn’t well and is really missing him too.

Whatever the reason having him on my mind makes me feel closer to him.

I know if he was here he’d give me a hard time about not visiting enough.

Then he’d tell me how proud he is of me.

and that I should keep sharing yummy things with you.

this picture ran in our local paper. this was a church softball game. my grandaddy was actually there with the other team. he told me later even though he was there with the other team he always wanted my husband to do well. even if he was playing for the opposing team, lol.

You wanna know how to make this Mexican Lasagna?

I think Grandaddy would approve.

Mexican Lasagna ~ (adapted from Woman’s Day)

1 lb. ground beef
2 poblano chile peppers, seeded & diced
1 sm. onion, diced
2 T. chili powder
1 pkg. taco seasoning
2 cans fire-roasted tomatoes
1 (15oz.) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (10oz.) can enchilada sauce, mild
1/2 C. cilantro
4-6 flour tortillas
2 C. tortilla chips, crushed
1 C. cheddar cheese
1 C. mozzarella cheese

Prepare your casserole dish by spraying with cooking spray. I used a 2.5 qt. dish. Set aside

Cook beef, onion, and peppers in a skillet until beef is browned, onions are slightly translucent, and peppers are tender. Stir in the chili powder and taco seasoning. Cook for a couple of minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, corn, and enchilada sauce. Allow to simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro.

Start by adding a tortilla shell and crushed tortillas to the bottom of your baking dish. Top with some of the beef mixture and cheese. Continue until fully assembled. (You can also divided this into two dishes and bake one now and freeze one for later. Will keep wrapped in plastic wrap and foil for 2 months.) Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes.

Serve with sour cream and salsa if desired.