Saturday, October 30, 2010

ADM's Pumpkin

Here's a peek into the real life of your resident foodie.  :)  The pumpkin that my hubby and I carved tonight!  Well, he actually did the top and scooping of innards, and I did the carving.  But it was truly a team effort for sure!  :)

I think it's goes along pretty well with the whole "A Delicious Melody" theme too....let me know what you think!  :)
Oooo, glowing pumpkin!
The technique...I got the cookie cutter idea from BH&G's Halloween Issue of 2009.

The finished product.
So what do you think?  I think I love it!   :)  Happy Halloween!!  Be safe!  Have fun! 

Savory Sweet Potato Soup

This is a great soup for a fall or winter night!  It will warm you from within and give your tastebuds a treat.  Afterall they are used to sweet, sweet potato dishes, not savory ones!   :)

What you'll need:
3 Large Sweet Potatoes (or about 7 c. of cup up sweet potatoes)
4 c. Chicken Broth (or Vegetable broth)
2 c. Milk
1 t. Salt
1 t. Pepper
Optional Sour cream for garnish

1.  Peel, cup up and cook sweet potatoes in water until tender.  (About 20 minutes)
 2.  Drain the potatoes and add the 4 c. of broth to the pot.  Then with a hand blender, blender or food processor puree the cooked sweet potatoes until  they are smooth like above.
 3.  Add the salt, pepper and milk and bring to a slight boil.  Then reduce the heat, and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Serve and enjoy!  We recommend it with a dollop of sour cream!  Yum!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Owl Cupcakes

I guess I missed announcing my 200th post here's my 201st today!!! Sweet huh??  I can't believe I've already done that many posts on here since January!!  Thanks for being my loyal readers too!!!!  I wouldn't be here if it weren't for you! :)

Anyway, these cupcakes are truly a hoot!!!   :)  I got this idea from my Mom yesterday.  She'd seen them before and when I googled them, they were there...but we couldn't figure out who actually came up with the idea.  So, when/if I ever find out, I will be sure to let you know!!  

These are super, super cute and super easy Halloween (or really anytime) cupcakes though!  

You'll need these ingredients:
Cupcakes, cooled (I did Chocolate from a box, but any flavor will due!)
Chocolate Frosting (canned or homemade)
Candy Corn
Brown/Black M&M's
Oreo's (I used regular, but you could use double stuffed ones.)

1.  Gather your ingredients and make the cupcakes.
 2.  Work on the eyes for the owls.  Just open up the Oreo and we'll use the side with the cream filling. Like this...
 But if they don't come apart very well, you can use a cheese slicer to help out!  I ended up using this for most of mine!  :)
 3.  Frost the cupcakes with the chocolate frosting.
 4.  Then place two oreo "eyes"  on the cupcake like so...
 5.  Then place the pupils (M&Ms) on the eyes (you may need a dab of frosting to make them stick) and put the beak (Candy Corn) in place.
 6.  Then put the owl faces on the rest of your cupcakes.
 Aren't they just adorable?  And a hoot?  :)  I love them!  

Anyway, hope you have a hoot while making them and serving them!!!!  Just in time for Hallow's eve too!  :)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bone Bread sticks

Here are some Halloween inspired bread sticks.  Creepy or cute?  You decide....  

What you'll need:
1 package active dry yeast
1 c. warm water
1.5 c. All Purpose Flour
1 c. Whole Wheat Flour
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Sugar (or Honey)
Olive oil to spread on top
Optional: Garlic Powder and Parmesan Cheese
Tomato Sauce (recipe or store bought)

1. Start by adding the yeast to the warm water and stir.

2. Mix in the rest of the ingredients into the yeast mixture.

3. Once well combined, let rise for 30 minutes.

4.  Divide dough in half and put one half on a cutting board/pastry board.  Spread out into a rectangle like so... 

 5.  Either cut the rectangle into strips like below, and shape into little bones, OR shape the whole rectangle into a large bone to cut up after it is cooked.
 6.  Bake bone bread sticks in a 400 degree oven for 5-15 minutes depending on the size of the sticks. (Keep an eye on the oven, especially if they are on the small side.)
Serve with sauce and enjoy!!  Aren't they cute?  I can't decide which ones I prefer....

Added note....
You can also do mini bones with these...they'll turn out like this before they are baked.

Jack-o'-lantern Pizza

Here's a festive way to feed your family or party guests this Halloween.  I think these are a.d.o.r.a.b.l.e. and yummy!  You can really customize them too, which is always a plus right?  :)

Jack-o'-latern Pizzas:
Pizza Dough (homemade or store bought)
Sauce (Tomato Sauce or your choice)
 Make a personal sized pizza and then shape into a pumpkin.
 Top it with sauce, cheese and other toppings.  Be sure to arrange the toppings in a shape like a face or something!  Cute huh?  :)

Bake at 400degrees for 7-12 minutes or until golden.
Enjoy!  You could also do a regular sized pizza, but I think the personal sized ones are perfect for parties, etc!!  Have fun!!

Tomato Sauce

Here's a recipe for a basic tomato sauce.  You can use this for:  dipping, pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce.  (Or whatever else you can think of!)  You can easily adjust this to your liking too!  :)

Tomato Sauce:
28oz. can of Crushed Tomatoes
6oz. can of Tomato Paste
1 T. Garlic, minced
1 T. Sugar
1/2 t. Pepper
1/4 t. Salt
~1 T. Fresh Basil, chopped

In a saucepan combine all the ingredients except for the fresh basil.  Stir together, and gradually bring to a slight boil.  Turn down the heat to low to medium-low and stir in the basil.  Let simmer for at least 20 minutes.

Serve as dipping sauce for breadsticks or as the sauce for your pizza or spaghetti!  Enjoy!!  :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fiesta Tots

Here's a fun addition to any meal or snack!  Although they are not the healthiest of foods...tater tots are sure versatile!!  :)  These are reminiscent of Taco John's Potato Oles, too...just fyi.

Fiesta Tots:
Tater Tots (puffs or coins)
1 tsp. Paprika
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Pepper

1.  Figure out how many tots you want to serve.
2.  Then spread them out into one layer on a baking sheet.
3.  Mix together paprika, salt and pepper.
4.  Sprinkle seasonings over the tots.  (If you are only making one serving you will not use all the seasonings, and if you are doing more than 4 you may need more.  So adjust as needed.)
5.  Bake as directed on the tot package, or at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.
6.  Serve hot and enjoy!

These would go along with these recipes really well... Chile Rellenos, Tacos, Taquitos, or Chicken Enchilada Soup.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Easy (Almost) Texas Sheet Cake

Alright, I don't know about you, but I have a huge (HUGE!) sweet tooth.  At least sometimes....  :)  So, on Friday I felt like making some Texas Sheet Cake, but didn't have the time to make it from scratch.  So here's my short cut that worked out well....but truth be told, didn't really turn out as a Texas sheet cake.  It's delicious, but the cake isn't as spongy/soggy as a true Texas sheet cake.
I suppose some people will like this better than the real deal, while others want the real thing.  Either way, this is a quick way to make a delicious dessert!  :)  (Don't worry I will still continue to make the real deal from time to time, but this sure did make quick work of a dessert, which is always appreciated!)  :)
Easy (almost) Texas Sheet Cake
1 box German Chocolate Cake Mix, with ingredients to make into cake
1/4 c.  Cocoa Powder
1 c.  Sugar
2/3 c.  Milk
1 t. Vanilla
1/2-1 c. Nuts

1.  Mix up cake batter according to the instructions on the box.  Then pour into a jelly roll pan and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes.  (Or until it starts to pull away from the sides of the pan.)  Don't ask why mine looked bubbly like this when I took it out of the oven....don't know...but still tasted great! :)
 2.  While the cake is baking start on the frosting goodness!  :)  In a small pot combine the cocoa, milk and sugar on medium heat until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat and add vanilla.  (You'll put the frosting on the cake immediately after it comes out of the oven, so be ready!)
3.  When the cake is done baking pull it out of the oven and pour the frosting over it.  Try to get it everywhere, and you can help it along with a spatula.  Then sprinkle the nuts on top!  Done!
Enjoy!  I prefer it right after it's been frosted (even though it's really hot) but eat whenever you'd like!  :)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Lemon Pasta

Recently, my husband and I had dinner at a friends' house.  They served us a great dinner, and one of the dishes was pasta very similar to this.  So, naturally, I had to try to recreate it at home!  I think it turned out pretty well too.  :)  Check it out....

Lemon Pasta
Whole grain pasta, Spaghetti or Linguini (Just grab a handful of pasta--about enough for 4 people as a side dish)
1 lemon
~ 1 c. of shredded Italian cheese (experiment with it, I used a blend of 5 Italian cheeses and really liked it)
1 T. Olive Oil
Basil for garnish (optional)

1.  Cook the pasta.
2.  While the pasta is cooking zest the lemon and then juice it.  Set aside the zest and juice.
3.  Drain pasta when it is done cooking and return to the pot.  Reserve about 2 T. of the water.
4.  Stir the pasta, water, lemon juice, lemon zest and cheese together in the pot.
5.  Pour the pasta into the serving dish and drizzle the olive oil over it.  Then garnish with the basil, and addition zest if desired.
Enjoy!!  :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Don't you just love a nice warm, crispy taquito?  Well, now you don't have to buy the frozen kind because you can make them at home with ease!  :)  In fact, you won't even have to fry them!!

~15 corn tortillas  (Mine were white corn, just fyi)
1.5 c. beef or chicken, shredded
1/4 t. chili powder
1/4 t. paprika
Salt/Pepper to taste
Spray oil
 1.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Then get out the tortillas, and mix the chicken (or beef) with the chili powder, paprika, and a touch of salt and pepper.  (You can make these as spicy or not as you would like!)
 2.  Assemble the taquitos.  (See pic below.)  Lay out one tortilla, put about 1 T. of meat mixture in a line in the middle and carefully roll up.  You can then put them on a baking sheet and continue to do the rest...*
  *=but in order to prevent this (below) from possibly happening.....
I recommend securing each taquito with a toothpick as shown below.  :)
 3.  Once all taquitos have been assembled place them on a baking sheet, lightly spray them with the cooking oil spray and sprinkle a touch of salt on the tops of them.   Then bake for 12-15minutes or until golden and crispy!  :)
Enjoy!!  :)  You may serve them with salsa, guacamole and/or queso!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Easy Tiny Totes

Here's a tiny tote you can make several of in an hour!  Perfect for kiddos, treat bags, goodie bags, etc....Here's how to make them!  :)

What you'll need:
Sewing Machine
10" x 20 " piece of fabric
10" x 4" piece of farbic for handle

1.  Start with the 10" x 20" piece of fabric.  Pin and then sew along each 10" side.  Like below.
 2.  Next, fold the fabric in half so that the pretty sides are touching.  Pin and then sew up the sides, like below.
 3.  Pick up, what will be the bottom of the tote, and make a bottom for the tote.  Look at pic below, and then sew it so it looks like below.  Do this one each side.
 4.  The bag will start looking like a tote, see below...
 5.  Turn the tote right side out, and we'll start on the strap next.
 See the bottom of the tote again, cute huh?
 6.  Fold the 10" x 4" fabric up so that the edges aren't showing.  Then sew it on each side like below.
 7.  Pin the strap into place on each side seam of the tote.
 8.  Sew into place.  You can have it look like this.... or this....   :)

Now the tote is done!!  See how adorable it is?!?!?!  It even sits up by itself!  :)
 I whipped 7 of these out yesterday in about 2 if I can, I'm sure you can too!!  :)  Hope you have sew much fun too!!!
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