Our trip back to my sister's home, and Thanksgiving #2 went well. BJ was happy to have the weekend off, since usually he has to work (and instead has to work the weekend of Christmas). The sad point was that usually my cousins come, but this year were unable to make it. We still had a pretty full house: BJ's mom (his step-dad had to work), his brother and his new wife, his dad and stepmother. My mom and step dad and then my niece and nephew. Cade stuck to hubby like crazy. I had to ask if John was going to sleep with me or with Cade- and Cade wanted John to sleep on his trundle bed. :) It's a good thing I took my DS - Cade has his own, but he played mine most of the time we were there since I have a card that has a few games on it that we couldn't get to work in his. My sister and BiL now have a few game titles that he likes. BJ got a new flat screen tv (as far as I could tell it matched the one in the living room) so they mounted it on the wall in the "game room" and his brother got their old tv which made them happy. Layton wasn't so happy, she knew how to work that tv and didn't like not knowing how to use the new one to watch her DVDs. She threw quite a fit when they took the old tv with them as they left. Before dinner, she also had to change outfits four times *sigh*. I thought Kelly was bad while I was growing up. Kelly was talking about how she's getting the: "You're a mean mommy!" and "You don't love me!" speeches from her kids now, just like she (we) used to give when we were younger. Layton is quite frankly a little Kelly, even going so far as to look like her. It surprises me every time I see her how much she looks like Kelly every time I see her. Cade looks like a mixture of both his mom and dad. We were able to watch Ratatouille and watch part of Wall-E while there too.
Oh, Mary & Adam: Remember how we were talking about local news and how you can tell the difference between small town vs. large city? I told Kelly about your Louisville late-night outside the empty parking lot "Live from the School Bus Depot!" reporting. And then John made sure to mention the fact that most people smile when they say the word smile except for the Charlottesville reporter we saw. Kelly told us about the Harrisonburg reporter on Election Day who must of thought she was in Chicago since she told people to: "Vote early and vote often!"
There was a lot of food, like usual. :) My mom had helped with a Thanksgiving dinner at church, so she had a turkey breast already done since that was her contribution to the dinner so that was what she brought with her. We warmed it by gently steaming it while we prepared the rest of the stuff and that worked really well. She also brought the gravy and stuffing (with some made without onions and celery for my sister). My mom also made some cranberry sauce, she does the one with a whole orange, but I must admit I've never liked that one. And she brought Mr. Keith's favorite thing: oatmeal cookies. :D I think that was the only thing that was actually gone by the end of the evening. Kelly made mashed potatoes (she had BJ peel and cut them - she says the new Ore-Ida's are a god-send for her since she's not allergic to cooked potatoes), sweet potato casserole (basically the same as the one Mary made but Kelly likes her walnuts finer (and Mary might use Pecans I don't remember and I don't eat either) - she made half without nuts. Kelly also bought a Pumpkin cheesecake, Pumpkin Pie and Apple Pie (just for me that last one - although I wasn't the only one that ate it) from Costco. I know the apple pie was great, and everyone said the others were too. And the cost wasn't bad either- something I might have to consider if I ever need to. I can be pie crust challenged (warm hands) and if there's going to be a lot of people it would be worth it to buy one of the larger Costco pies and not frustrate myself (the apple was 5.99 I saw). Both of BJ's mom's brought green beans, his step mom also brought something that is common but I'm not sure what it's called: marshmallows, mandarin oranges, walnuts, etc. Not exactly ambrosia since it didn't have coconut - but I guess some people might call it that? His dad also brought deer tenderloin done in an onion gravy that was very good. I brought 2 loaves of bread (1 wheat and 1 white) and the biscotti like I posted earlier. And BJ's SiL brought a really yummy and easy salad:
Laura's Thanksgiving Salad
1/3 cup white vinegar
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp mustard
1 tsp grated onion
1 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp poppy seeds
1 med bunch of romaine, chopped
1 cup salted cashew halves
4 oz Swiss cheese, grated
Blend vinegar through salt. While processing gradually add 1 cup of vegetable oil. Stir in 1 tsp poppy seeds. Toss with salad.
Not totally WW friendly, but still tasty (Laura did WW awhile back, so Kelly her and I talk about it). Everyone told me I had lost weight, since most of them hadn't seen me for awhile. That felt great! We came home with a little bit of leftovers since John mentioned on Friday that he missed leftovers. I felt bad, but I couldn't see getting any on Thursday since we wouldn't be home this weekend and we were going to be eating another T-day dinner. He understood, but still wanted some. It's not a big thing, the only thing I would have had to buy would have been a turkey breast and I could have given him our own turkey dinner again anyway.
Ok, on to my Menu Plan:
It's got a bit more beef on it than I had originally thought I'd have. I had started to plan it before we left for the weekend. My sister had gotten a cow butchered (she went in with someone else and she had 3/4 of the cow in her freezer). When she does this, I get the parts she doesn't like, mainly the liver, heart, and tongue. She also told me she had some older meat from the last cow that she was going to give me to so we needed to bring an ice chest with us, good thing we don't have much choice between bringing our smaller one or the LARGE one. She filled up the large one AND my little Trader Joes insulated one too (I also kept T-day leftovers in the TJ's one). I still had a chub of ground beef and 2 packages of ground beef patties (not quite burgers but close and not cube steak, they are thinner and fall apart easier). I've pulled those out and have planned to use those 3 older things this week.
Last night when we got home I made Turkey Noodle Soup. I had cooked the turkey bones from Thurs on Friday in the crockpot and had 12 cups of broth and some meat. I used 4 cups broth and I added some frozen CA veggies, some leftover corn (it was about 1/2 cup) from a dinner side last week and egg noodles.
Monday (tonight): T-day leftovers - Mashed potatoes, Sweet Potato casserole, green beans, sliced turkey, stuffing.
Tuesday: Homemade Nachos (recipe below)
Wednesday: Hamburger Vegetable Soup (recipe below)
Thursday: Keema Mattar (recipe below)
Friday: Homemade Hawaiian Pizza (ham & pineapple)
Saturday: FFY (fend for yourself)
Sunday: Indian Tomato Soup (lunch) (recipe below) Omelets (dinner)
For more menu ideas visit: I'm an Organizing Junkie
6 Large Corn Flour Tortillas or Flour Tortillas
1 pound cooked ground beef, seasoned with taco seasoning
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 jar (16 ounces) salsa
1 cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1 cup ripe olives, sliced
1 cup Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup fresh tomatoes, diced
1/4 cup green onion, chopped
1 container (16 ounces) sour cream (optional)
Slice fresh tortillas into large triangle shapes and bake at 375 degrees F for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool.
Layering ingredients on top of tortilla chips in the following order, beginning with seasoned ground beef, chopped onion, salsa, and a small amount of Monterey jack cheese, ending with olives. Heat in oven just until Monterey jack cheese melts. Remove from oven and top with Cheddar cheese, fresh diced tomatoes,and chopped green onion. Top with sour cream if desired Makes 6 servings.
From the Clabber Girl Recipe Book "RECIPES TO WARM THE HEART"
Vegetable Hamburger Soup
From Sharing Our Best: Recipes from Amish Mennonites, Stuarts Draft, VA
Mrs. Paul D. Yoder
1 1/2 lbs hamburger
1/2 cup chopped onion
4 cup water
1/2 c chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 cups diced potatoes
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp basil or parsley
1 beef bouillon cube
3 tomatoes or a little juice
salt and pepper to taste
In large saucepan, brown meat with onions. Add water and remaining ingredients except tomatoes. Cook until vegetables are tender, then add tomatoes and simmer 10 minutes. May add more of other vegetables and juices or water. Should make about a gallon of soup.
Keema Matar (Chopped Meat with Peas)
Adapted from Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery p. 939 AND "Great Curries" by Manisha Kanani"
Serving Size : 4-6
1 tablespoon oil or butter
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons curry powder (or to taste)
2 green chiles, finely chopped (can use canned)
1 pound extra lean ground beef , or lamb
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon minced ginger – OR 1/3 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups water
1 (10 oz) package frozen peas
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Heat oil in a large saucepan and fry the onion for 5 minutes, until golden brown. Add the garlic, curry powder, ginger and chilies and fry for 2-3 minutes. Add the ground beef or lamb and stir fry for about 5 minutes, chopping and turning to break it up. Stir in the ground cumin, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, ground cinnamon, ginger, and salt with water. Cover and simmer for about 25 minutes. Add the peas and lemon juice. Cook for another 10 minutes, uncovered or until the meat is tender. Serve with naan bread and plain yogurt.
Variation: Substitute for green peas 1/2 cup split peas soaked in 1 cup water. Add peas and water to meat at beginning of cooking, cover, and cook until peas are tender.
Spicy Tomato Soup (Indian) (3 pts)
Seasoned with mild spices, this smooth soup is easy to prepare and appealing year round, served either hot or chilled. Really quick version: use 1 tsp garam masala, dash of Tabasco and 2 cans tomato soup.
Recipe By :Vasantha Prasad
Serving Size :4
3 cups vegetable broth, or water
3 ripe tomatoes, about 1 lb
16 ounces Italian plum tomatoes, whole canned, drained
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup yogurt, skim milk, plain
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
Stove-top Method: In a 3 quart saucepan, bring the vegetable broth to a boil. Add the tomatoes, onion, garlic, cumin, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cloves, salt, and lemon juice. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Off the heat, let the soup stand for 5 minutes.
Microwave Method: In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the vegetable broth, tomatoes, onions, garlic, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cloves, salt, and lemon juice. Cook covered on high (100%) for 6 minutes. Stir the contents and cook on high for another 6 to 8 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes.
For both methods, follow steps 4 and 5 below:
In a food processor fitted with a metal blade or in a blender, process the mixture to a fine puree. Pour the mixture into a saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and allow the soup to simmer for 5 minutes.
Garnish with a spoonful of yogurt and chopped cilantro.
Source: "Indian Vegetarian Cooking from an American Kitchen"
Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 193 Calories; 4g Fat (16.2% calories from fat); 8g Protein; 34g Carbohydrate; 5g Dietary Fiber; 2mg Cholesterol; 1528mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 1 Fat.