Saturday, August 28, 2010

LHC House Rehab- Day 2

Finishing up lunch....Before lunch on Day 2, August 28th, we tore the rest of the shed stuff out and cleared all the brush out of the backyard.

Tearing shingles off the garage roof

Cleaning off the trim on all the windows so we can repaint.

Don't remember what this was....part of putting a new hose bib on the back porch I think.

Taking out an old steel fence.

More shingles off the garage roof.

New tar paper on the garage roof

New sunny yellow paint going on the front of the house.

Here you can see the new yellow against the old color  on the house.

Bathroom is cleared and ready for Hardibacker board, the stuff that goes behind the tile.

The kitchen hardibacker is down and ready for tile.

And cleanup on day 2. See you next Saturday!

LHC House Rehab for Missions

Our church recently started work on a house flip. This is what it looked like to start with. What? You say you can't see a house? Oh yeah....keep reading.

This is the side of the house, its pretty hard to find too.

So here you can actually see there is a dwelling under all that growth...and its actually pretty cute!

And below is the side of the house.

The kitchen....

Living Room

1st Bedroom...

2nd Bedroom (Winnie the Pooh on th walls and all).....


Shed dwelling....wait what? Yeah, they had turned the garage into another living quarters.....bathroom and all. But not somewhere you would want to live. So we are turning it back into a garage....for cars.

Side of the house Day 1 August 21st.

The guys working on tearing out stuff. That was the theme of day 1

Inside of the garage...walls removed. You can still see the paneling they had in the "bathroom"

Oh here's back to the real bathroom. Tile is coming off the walls nicely. If you read the rest of my blog, you will see its not nearly as big of a pain as our bathroom was! Thank goodness!

Taking down the old fan to make room for a new one.

Side of the yard minus the fence....poison ivy....and falling down shed patio roof.

Working on the kitchen. One layer of peel and stick tiles and thin wood layer gone. We will be going over the remaining floor with new tile!
So, demo was the word for day 1, August 21st.

Oh, and I apologize for the picture sizes. Usually blogger lets me change the sizes but its being finicky today.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Meal Plan

I should be getting these to ya'll on Monday or even Sunday. But here it is mid-week again. Oh well, hopefully they can still be of use. On another note, I picked up a different Gluten Free bread this week b/c one of the bloggers I read recommended it (and she has really good taste!). Its Udi's!
Its fantastic! Even good not toasted. They also have cinnamon rolls....can you say yum! Well, I can't yet b/c Jungle Jim's was out of them (and they were on sale too dadgummit!) I have a substitute for Cinnabons on Christmas morning! Yep, my hubby goes and picks up Cinnabons on Christmas Eve every year for my sisters family. Then we go to his Grandmother's house where someone else brings them as well. Its crazy but a fun tradition....except that this year I had to make something else so I didn't starve! Yeah for Udi's!

1. Pasta Rosa -I have made this before and it is fantastic! I add grilled chicken to her recipe though. And be makes a ton and is super fast! Great easy weekday meal

2. Brinner- Cinnamon Coffee Cake (GF) Scrambled Eggs, Breakfast Potatoes and Bacon

3. Slow Cooker Pork Tacos-This is simple. Put a pork roast or tenderloin in the slow cooker with a package of McCormick Taco Seasoning (It's gluten free) and a jar of tomatillo salsa (the green stuff). Let it cook on low for 7-8 hours or high for 3-4. Shred meat and serve with normal taco fixins. I also like to make up some refried beans. By make up, I mean open a can, put in a saucepan, add cheese and hot sauce to make them seem not so "out of a can".

4. Cajun Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans-Note to all: I am cutting the recipe in half....b/c its huge and there are only two people at my house. Also, for GF breadcrumbs, I save the ends of my Udi's bread in the freezer and put them in the food processor and then store in the freezer for recipes like this. If you don't have any you can also use Chex cereal (not the flavored ones) crushed up.

5. Grilled Lemon Chicken with Zucchini Risotto

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Meal Plan for this week.

1.Mini Meatball Pasta
2.Stuffed Portobellos with Roasted Potatoes
3.Marsala Chicken with mashed potatoes
4.Spicy Shrimp, Grilled Corn and Veggies
5.Garlic Fried Rice with Chicken

Well that was easy! I had links for everything today. Enjoy! Oh, and just for point of reference I bought all the groceries for this week for $57! The only thing I already had was 1lb of ground beef. Oh, and the Marsala, from doing the carrots last week.Yippee!

Mini Meatball Pasta

So, my friend AJ (cook, gardener, IT extraordinaire) brought me some beautiful little cherry tomatoes from his garden the other day and that is what inspired this easy little pasta dish.

First, I made mini meatballs. I wanted everything to be close to the same size as the tomatoes. The meatballs consist of GF breadcrumbs, 1 lb ground beef, chopped garlic, red pepper flake, Italian seasoning and 1 egg. You have to get your hands in this way around it. But keep these guys small. You should get around 24-28 from a pound of meat. Drizzle them with oil and put on a cookie sheet in the 350 oven for about 15-20 minutes.

Here's the cute tomatoes. Now, I cut them in half....I can't stand the explosion that happens when you bite one of these suckers whole. Maybe I'm weird....but if I am, its not just for that!

Here's the rest of the lineup. GF pasta swirls in the back. Jar of Ragu (I know, I am cheating), container of little fresh mozzarella balls. Be sure to get the tiny ones.
Did you know? The different names they give fresh mozzarella is just to denote the size!

I didn't take a bunch of process photos, but its pretty easy to put together. Cook pasta, drain and put back in pot. Add meatballs, tomatoes, sauce and mozzarella balls and toss. Top with Parmesan cheese.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Stuffed Portobellos

First of all, I apologize for any weird colors in these photos. I didn't feel like editing tonight.
1 pkg Italian Sausage
1 pkg frozen spinach (defrosted)
4-6  large portobellos or 10-12 smaller ones (as seen below)
1 8oz block of Neufchatel cheese (low fat cream cheese....hey I am trying to save a few fat grams!)
3 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup parmesean cheese
2-3 Tbsp white wine
Olive oil for drizzling

First of all, remove sausage from casing....just squeeze it out. Yes I know its gross but its better than having casing in your mushrooms. Brown in a skillet, breaking up as you go.

Meanwhile, cut up new potatoes and put in bowl. (No, my potatoes aren't green, that is the weird color I was talking about) Drizzle with EVOO and season with S&P and fresh herbs. I had Lemon Thyme growing on my deck so I used that. Toss.

Place on baking sheet and put in oven at 375.

Okay, here our sausage is done browning.

Put defrosted box of spinach (minus the box) in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze all the liquid out.

Combine cream cheese, spinach, parmesean, garlic, wine, sausage and chopped mushroom stems together in a bowl. (Notice I am using the same bowl I used for the potatoes so I don't have so many dishes!) Oh yeah, I take the stems out of the mushrooms and chop them up to add to the mix so I don't waste!

See, here in the front is our little mushroom with his stem and the ones in the back have been destemified.

Use spoon to fill mushrooms....overfill fact, I had leftover filling that I put in a ramekin and baked me, you will eat it.
 Sprinkle mushrooms with parmesean and drizzle with EVOO. Bake for 15 minutes with potatoes that have already been in the oven.

This is what your potatoes should look like when they are done. Crispy edges thanks to the Olive Oil.

And here's a plateful. These turned out awesome if I do say so myself.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ch ch ch changing

I decided to go with a more simple look and decided the blog needed a new name. I am not set on this yet but its a work in progress. Let me know what you think. First benefit....larger pictures!

Dessert of the Week

Sometimes, not every week, but sometimes I get a wild hair up my patootie and decide to make a dessert I haven't made before. One week it was Key Lime Pie. This week it was this extremely rich, but extremely naturally gluten free chocolate dessert! Sorry in advance for the double spacing. I didn't feel like retyping it. Oh and its good cold the next day too....or you can reheat it, I was too lazy too!

Chocolate Panna Cotta with Amaretto Whipped Cream (Recipe by Giada de Laurentiis)
Makes 4-6 servings
2 cups cold whole milk
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 packet unflavored gelatin
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 (12-oz) bag bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
1 cup whipping cream
1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar
1 tablespoon almond liqueur ( I didn't have this but had almond extract so I substituted)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 2-quart casserole dish.
In a small saucepan, combine 1 1/2 cups of the milk, the granulated sugar, and the vanilla. Bring to a simmer and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat.
In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the remaining 1/2 cup of cold milk and let it dissolve for 2 minutes. Combine the cold milk and gelatin with the hot milk and sugar. Stir to dissolve the gelatin, about 5 minutes. (Heat the milk gently if the gelatin is not dissolving easily.) When the gelatin is dissolved, combine the eggs with the warm milk mixture, whisking constantly to avoid scrambling the eggs. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a large measuring cup or small pitcher.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate over simmering water in a double boiler. When the chocolate is melted, gradually combine the milk and egg mixture with the melted chocolate, stirring between each addition to create a smooth mixture.
Pour the mixture into the prepared dish. Sprinkle the top with the almonds. Place the casserole dish in a larger baking pan or roasting pan and add hot water to the larger pan until the water comes halfway up the sides of the casserole dish. Place both pans in the oven and bake the panna cotta until the sides are firm and the center just jiggles slightly, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 30 minutes.
Just before serving, whip the cream to soft peaks in a medium bowl using a whisk or electric hand mixer. Add the confectioners’ sugar and almond liqueur and whip to combine. Spoon the panna cotta into individual serving bowls and dollop the top with the almond whipped cream.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Meal Plan from 2 weeks ago....sheesh I am behind!

Here we go again!

1.Grilled chicken and Califlower Gratin
I just marinated the chicken in Italian dressing and instructions necessary!
The gratin is a Giada dish and hers had broccoli, but when I got to the grocery, they were out of califlower but had broccoflower! I just used it.
(Adapted from "Vegetable Gratin" in Giada De Laurentis' book Giada's Family Dinners. Original recipe pg. 178.)
3 T unsalted butter
1 head of cauliflower, cut into large florets
1 head of broccoflower (or just two of cali or add in broccoli)
2 T all-purpose flour (any GF blend will do)
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1 1/4 cups whole milk
6oz fontina cheese, shredded
1/2 cup plus 2 T grated peccorino romano cheese
freshly ground black pepper
2 T dried bread crumbs plus a tablespoon of dried oregano (Again, you don't have to use breadcrumbs if you don't have GF ones.)

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.   Grease a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking dish with 1 T of the butter.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.  Add the cauliflower florets and cook for 2 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cauliflower to the prepared dish. 
Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 T of butter in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat.  Add the flour and whisk for 1 minute.  Whisk in the cream and milk.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly, whisking often, about 2 minutes.  Remove the saucepan from the heat.  Add the cheddar, edam, and 1/2 cup of the romano.  Stir until the cheeses have melted.  Season the sauce with salt and pepper.  Pour the sauce over the vegetables and toss to coat.
In a small bowl, stir the bread crumbs and oregano with the remaining 2 T of romano.  Sprinkle over the gratin.
Bake uncovered until the topping is golden brown and the sauce is bubbly, about 15-20 minutes.
2.Cajun Burgers and Texas Oven Fries
This recipe comes to us from this great little Taste of Home Grilling magazine my MIL picked up for me a couple of years is now stained and wrinkled b/c of all the yummy recipes within!

Cajun Seasoning Blend:
3 Tbsp ground cumin
3 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp paprika
2 tsp salt
1 tsp cayenne (or more if you like it hot!)

1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 tsp cajun season blend (from above)
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce (franks or cholula is what we use)
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried basil
1 garlic clove minced
1 lb ground beef
Combine all ingredients, but don't overmix. Make 4 patties and grill. Top with Provolone cheese slice and serve on bun or not.

Oven fries are just idaho potatoes cut to texas size, drizzled with EVOO and sprinkle with whatever herbs you like. I used dried thyme and garlic salt. Bake in oven at 400 degrees until golden brown.

3. Taste of Summer Chicken with Cheesy Spicy Grits
Again from the grilling magazine....I'm not sure this is worth the other was good but nothing special. I did add some grilled pineapple slices to the top though.

3/4 cup Italian salad dressing
3/4 cup unsweetened pineapple juice
3/4 cup white win or white grape juice
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Combine all ingredients in a zippy bag and let sit overnight in the fridge.Grill chicken, discard marinade.Make grits according to package (instant or quick cooking) Once done, add 1 cup cheddar cheese and finely diced jalapeno pepper.

4. Rosemary Lime Pork Chops and Roasted New potatoes
This is also out of the same magazine (apparently I was lazy when it came to looking through cook books this week) and was originally intended for chicken, but I had some pork chops I got on sale.
4 pork chops
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup white wine or chicken broth
1/4 cup lime juice
2 Tbsps mince fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Marinate all ingredients overnight. Grill chops. Yum! I would never in a million years have paired rosemary and lime but i have to say, its a yummy combo.

Cut new potatoes into halves, coat with EVOO and Garlic and salt and bake in the oven until outsides are golden brown and crispy.

That's all I have written down for that week folks (ie: my sister, b/c I really think she is the only one using these meal plans!)
I did create a new little pasta dish tonight that I will post tomorrow with some pictures. Just to get you involved little meatballs, small balls of fresh mozzerella and all sorts of yumminess!

Meal Plan for.....oh I forget!

Its been a few weeks since I have posted these and my sister informed me today that she uses them and I needed to keep posting! (I am pretty sure she is the only one but here goes!)

1.Taco Night
Pretty self-explanatory.....I make taco meat with 1 lb ground beef and McCormick Taco Seasoning(its gluten free b/c they use Potato Starch instead of Wheat flour or MSG or icky stuff)
Corn Tortillas
Lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, cheese...the usual suspects
Heat up some refried beans(check these for gluten ingredients too....I buy ones out of the actual hispanic section) add some cheese and hot sauce and keep on low

2.Chicken Cordon Bleu with Balsamic Glazed Carrots
Boneless skinless breasts-pounded out to 1/4" thickness
Deli ham and swiss
Dijon Mustard
Bread crumbs if you have them ( I freeze the ends of my GF bread when I buy it and process it in the food processor and keep the crumbs in the freezer)
Take chicken and place slice of cheese and ham in the middle and roll up. Put seam side down on a plate. Once all are completed, brush outside with Dijon mustard and coat in breadcrumbs.
Cook in tsp of olive oil in a medium skillet until chicken is cooked through or in a 350 oven for about 20 minutes.

Balsamic Glazed Carrots--I know the recipe calls for hazelnuts but I didn't want to buy those at the grocery so I skipped that step!

3.Asian Inspired Salmon and Quinoa
I honestly hope I remember what all I did with this one. I had a piece of nice salmon I got on sale so I just put some LaChoy Soy Sauce(GF) on it with about a tsp of ginger and then sprinkled brown sugar on the top. I let this sit while I got the quinoa ready.

I used the regular quinoa but red would work just fine. First, dice up 1/2 onion and a clove of garlic. Saute these until translucent, then follow the box directions. I used the package directions substituting Chicken Stock and soy sauce for water. DO NOT use more than 1/4 cup of soy sauce to 1 cup quinoa.....its wayyy too salty. Anywho....I also had a zucchini, so I diced that up and added to the mix at the end. I also cut some green onions on an angle and topped the whole dish with those.

The Salmon just got grilled until done.

Fortunately for me, my birthday was last week and we went to Outback on Friday. As for the other day.....I can't for the life of me remember what I made or if we just ate out. I think the latter might have been true. I've got another week coming though....not to mention this week, which I have to get to planning. Hitting the grocery store tomorrow night folks!