May 30, 2012

Menu Plan Wednesday

This week, we are eating mainly off the stockpile of meats that we already have in our freezer.  I'm wanting to make some room in there so I can get some freezer cooking done & have a place to store it.

Here's what our weekly menu is looking like.


  • Frito Corn Salad
  • Sandwiches
  • Chicken Salad
  • Cheese Quesidllas
  • leftovers




May 29, 2012

Sweet & Savory Baked Pork Chops

This recipe is something I have been wanting to share with you all for a while.  It's my 'go-to' dish for pork chops, and it's awesome, ya'll.  

And, so - so simple!

Not counting salt & pepper, this dish has just 5 ingredients - and only takes minutes to prep before finishing off in the oven.  I created it when I was going to make another dish, and realized I didn't have the ingredients to do. Happens to all of us right?  This time though, it proved to be a good thing - and I ended up with a pork dish that my husband went on & on about how delicious it was.

It's a little bit of sweet, a little bit of savory, and a whole lot of flavor.  

And, I'm serious by how little time it takes to prep.  Follow along with me - you'll see.

Sprinkle some thin to medium cut pork chops with salt & pepper.  Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet, and add in the chops.  Cook on medium-high heat until nicely browned on each side.

When browned, transfer the pork chops to a baking dish and sprinkle the top with steak seasoning (optional).  

Stir the onions into the butter in the hot skillet.  Stir in the brown sugar & Worcestershire sauce, cook on medium-high heat for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.  The onion mixture will turn dark & lovely.

Pour this mixture over the pork chops.  

Cover with tinfoil, & bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.  The sauce doubles in the oven, so make sure you spoon every bit of extra sauce on the pork chops - and into cups to dip individual bites in.  

Such a simple thing - but oh, so good.

Sweet & Savory Baked Pork Chops
(serves 4)

  • 4 thin to medium cut boneless pork chops
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 large sweet onion (like vidalia), sliced
  • salt , pepper, & steak seasoning to taste


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Melt the butter in a skillet on medium-high heat.  Season the pork chops on each side with salt & pepper.  Cook for a few minutes on each side, until nicely browned.  Transfer the chops to a 2 quart casserole dish, leaving the burner on. Sprinkle the pork chops with steak seasoning.

Add the sliced onion, brown sugar, & Worcestershire sauce to the butter in the skillet.  Cook for 7 minutes.  The mixture will be dark & lovely.  Pour the onion mixture evenly on top of the pork chops.  Cover with tin foil & bake for 20 minutes.

Serve with the sauce spooned on top, and/or with the sauce in a dipping cup.


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May 27, 2012

Makin' You Crave Monday

Welcome to this week's edition of Makin' You Crave Monday!!

This week, I'm sharing my Patriotic Berry Trifle - a perfect addition your Memorial Day picnic or cookout!

Here are my favorites from last week.  Remember, all the features are pinned on my Pinterest.

Thanks to all who shared recipes last week - looking forward to seeing all the goodies this week!!


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DIY Charging Station

We all seem to have many portable devices that need charging.  Usually, my cords are wrapped up & shoved in a drawer...or even worse, hanging from the wall with nothing attached to them.  My husband is the culprit behind that one - men!  ;)

I ran across a super cool idea this week for organizing the charging cords, and I just knew it was the solution to my problem.  It was absolutely genius!

In the original idea, a ribbon box was used.  There are a couple of cute ones herehere, and here. However, I'm all about the free & cheap.  So, I used a shoe box instead - decorated with scrapbook paper, and holes cut with a large hole punch.


Make a label for each hole - Mom's cell, Dad's cell, Kindle, iPod, etc.  Stick a surge protector inside, and thred all your chargers through.  You can easily flip off the power switch on the surge protector to eliminate any ghost power. Are you listening, dear husband of mine?


Ta-da!  No more cord mess!!  I just love this project :)


May 26, 2012

Gevalia FREE Stainless Steel Blender


I have to say that I am extremely excited about this brand new promotion. Gevalia has really good products, and this blender looks fantastic!  I can't wait to get mine.


All you have to do is order 4 boxes of coffee or tea for $19.99 & you receive this stainless steel blender for completely free!!

I am so impressed with this deal.  Like I said before, Gevalia products are fantastic - and their customer service is unbeatable too.  This does put you on auto-delivery, so as soon as you get your package, call customer service at 1-800-Gevalia & cancel.  No obligations, so simple - and the blender is yours for free!


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Patriotic Berry Trifle

Memorial Day is right around the corner, and the 4th of July is not too far down the road either.  Time for outdoor barbecues, picnics, and pool time.  I just love this time of year!! 

I saw a recipe for a Patriotic Berry Trifle in Food Network Magazine a while back, and have made an adaptation of it several times since.  It's perfect for the patriotic holidays, but there is no need to limit it just to that.  With the fresh summer berries in season, I say whip this one up as often as you can.  It comes together super fast, and doesn't heat up your kitchen either.

Patriotic Berry Trifle
adapted from Sonny Anderson

  • 1/4 cup + 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 premade angel food cake
  • 1 pound cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 pints fresh blueberries
  • 2 pints fresh strawberries, hulled & sliced


Heat 1/4 cup sugar, lemon juice, & 1/4 cup water in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from the heat, and stir in the vanilla extract.  Let cool. Beat the remaining 1 cup sugar & the cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until smooth & light.  Add the heavy cream & beat on high speed until smooth & the consistency of whipped cream.

Cut the cake into 1 inch slices & brush each side with the lemon syrup. Cut into cubes. Arrange half of the cake cubes in the bottom of a 13 cup trifle dish, or large clear bowl.   Sprinkle evenly with a layer of blueberries.  Dollop half of the cream mixture over the blueberries & gently spread.  Top with a layer of strawberries.  Layer the remaining cake cubes on top of the strawberries, & top with the other half of the cream.  Arrange the remaining blueberries & strawberries on top.

Cover & refrigerate 1 hour.


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May 25, 2012

Spinach Artichoke Dip Stuffed Mushrooms

Spinach Artichoke Dip is one of my favorite appetizers, and this appetizer takes it up a notch.  For my most recent recipe contribution for Life Around Home, I paired two of my favorite appetizers - Spinach Artichoke Dip & Stuffed Mushrooms into one. And, in the process, I completely transformed it into a healthy dish, that not only is low in calories & fat - but actually tastes good too!

Spinach Artichoke Dip Stuffed Mushrooms
Created by Mrs Happy Homemaker for Life Around Home
(serves 4-6)

  • 10oz frozen spinach, thawed & squeezed
  • 12oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained & finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil mayonnaise
  • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 4oz 2% milk Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 12-15 med-large sized fresh mushrooms
  • paprika to garnish (optional)


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the first 9 ingredients together in a bowl. Mix well & set aside.  Using a damp paper towel, clean each mushroom.  Pluck the stem out from the center & hollow them out a little with a small spoon.  Scoop a generous portion of dip into each mushroom, making a mound in the center.  

Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray & arrange the stuffed mushrooms on top.  Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.  Sprinkle with paprika to garnish.


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