How have you spent your first few days of 2009?
New Year's Eve was spent hosting a party for some friends - New Year's at 9. Basically, we decided that it would be a good idea to invite some friends and their kids over to watch the east coast feed. It ended up being an awesome party (thanks to Guitar Hero for the Wii and a LOT of champagne)...I'm proud to say that I actually DID make it to midnight, although I don't remember a whole lot of the first few hours of 2009...Oh well. We've been asked to make this an annual event!
Joel and I have been hunkered down at home, recovering (because sadly, we're just not as young as we used to be) and watching the NFL playoffs. We took the girls to the Children's Museum to play at the new Bob the Builder exhibit (tons of fun for kids who like to build and tinker like my kids do!), which was lots of fun, especially now that both kids actually enjoy playing together (well, sometimes...).
I've made a few new recipes - a pineapple casserole, insanely good buffalo chicken dip, and some yummy rolls. Of course, I'm sharing the recipes:
Hot Pineapple Casserole
½ cup flour
1 lg can pineapple tidbits, drained
1/2 cup sugar
3 lg apples, diced
¼ lb shredded cheddar cheese
¼ cup butter, melted
Place pineapple & apples in casserole dish. Mix flour and sugar and sprinkle over fruit and top with cheese. Drizzle with melted butter. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Can double recipe for a 9x13 pan.
**Notes**This was a very yummy side dish with a spiral ham and would also be great for brunch.
1 cup warm water
3 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 (.25 ounce) envelope active dry yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoon shortening
1 1/2 tablespoon butter, melted
In a large bowl, mix together the warm water and sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the top, and let it stand for about 10 minutes, until the yeast is foamy.Mix the milk, egg and salt into the yeast. Measure the flour into a separate bowl, and crumble the shortening into it using your fingers until it is barely noticeable. Gradually stir the flour into the wet ingredients. Mix using a wooden spoon until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and starts to form a ball around the spoon. Cover with a hot wet towel that has been wrung out, and set in a warm place to rise until double in bulk. This should take about 45 minutes.
When the dough has risen, pour the melted butter over it, and knead for about 2 minutes. Let the dough rest for a few minutes, then roll out on a lightly floured surface to 1 inch thick. Use a knife to cut into 2 inch squares. Roll squares into balls, and place into greased round pans, spacing about 1 inch apart. Let rise again until doubled in size. You could also refrigerate the dough, and let it rise overnight for baking the next day.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Bake the rolls for about 12 minutes, until golden brown.
Buffalo Chicken Dip
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
1 cup ranch or bleu cheese dressing
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 hot sauce, or more to taste (I like Frank's Lime and Chili)
4 ounces bleu cheese crumbles
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a pie plate or 8 inch baking dish. Bake 30 minutes, or until bubbly. Serve with crackers, chips, bread, carrots, celery...or just a big ole' spoon.
**Notes**I just dumped all of the ingredients in my Little Dipper and set it on Low for about an hour and a half. YUM!
The kids are bored at home and can't wait to get back to school, classes, MOMS Club, and friends, and I'm looking forward to seeing my friends again too. This coming week I've got my book club meeting and we read My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Piccoult. This is a thought provoking story about a 13 year old girl who files for medical emmancipation from her parents because she no longer wants to be a tissue donor to her terminally ill older sister. Should make for an interesting discussion.
Finally, if you love Facebook as much as I do, I hope that you will read this article.