Beef Stew with Rice

I had a roast leftover from Sunday where we had done a crockpot dinner. And we’d done the roast beef sandwiches already for leftovers. So what to do with some yummy roast beef? I just felt like making a yummy fall stew.

Beef Stew with rice….
Beef stew is such a nice fall dish to make when it’s raining outside and getting chilly! 

It’s just the easiest thing to make with leftover roast beef. I sliced up some carrots, celery, onions and potatoes and then threw in a half cup of rice.  Here is my finished beef stew.

1 1/2 cups leftover roast beef cubed
3-4 sliced carrots
2 large potatoes or 3 medium diced
1 onion diced and sauteed
2 stalks of celery sliced
3/4 cup rice (optional)
2 cups of water (or more if adding rice)
2 beef bouillon cubes
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 can of tomato paste or sauce
Lawry’s seasoning to taste
pepper to taste

I added some ranch rolls with mozzerella and cheddar cheese on top for some yummy bread to eat with our soup….
They were yummy…here is one up close…I just sliced the Ranch Rolls in half and broiled them for 2 minutes….
Finished soup and bread rolls…you could add the rice or leave it out..and just have the potatoes…my hubs loves rice…so I added it in. 
This giant pot of beef stew will surely last us for a few meals….and it’s better the next day for a nice leftovers lunch…

It’s so easy to just dump it all in a pot and let it simmer for 30 minutes or so. The roast beef adds some beef taste to the soup as the veggies get tender. You can add or take away any veggies you don’t prefer. It’s all good!

Garden Party

My neighbor, Linda, had a beautiful garden party last night at her house in the early evening. Everybody was supposed to bring their favorite garden harvest in some kind of yummy dish.

Pretty fall colors in the napkins on the table. 

We had everything from cucumber dip to peach pie to zuchini casserole to homemade strawberry jam and homemade dinner rolls.  (I made the homemade rolls!) It was all so fun and so delicious!

Yummy fruit salad. 

I think this was a peach crisp. 
I took a few of these plums home for the hubs to taste. They were simply incredible! Sooooo sweet! 
Aren’t these cucumbers so cute with their curly cuts? 
These carrot cake bars were yummy too. I tried one! 
This fresh, homemade salsa was really yummy! I had some! 

And she has such a lovely yard. I wandered around taking shots of this and that.

This was a pretty pond full of lilly pads and koi surrounded by flowers and plants. It had a waterfall we could hear all night 
Pretty fall pumpkins and fall leaves were the decorations everywhere. 
Here was the garden party all set up behind her house. 
Flowers were lining the horse corral all around. So pretty! 

My grandkids would go nuts in her yard. It is like a wonderful park. She even has horses and a big garden out back.

 Her hubs made a climbing wall for the kids and a zip line too. I would never want to leave if I was 8 years old!

  There was even a giant sand pit for kids and a volleyball court! Why would you want to go anywhere else?

Table decor was really nice. 

 She had pumpkins growing in her garden as well as corn, squash, zuchini, all sorts of tomatoes and other yummy veggies.  She even had a greenhouse. There were 2 acres filled with great things.

I loved this picturesque shot of the back side of her yard with the neighbor’s A frame house in the distance. 
She got raspberry bushes from the same neighbor that shared her raspberry bushes with me. 
I got this great picture of their horse grazing in the back field. What a beauty. 

We had a great time eating, talking, and laughing till the sun went down. Then she had some speakers come and talk about gardens.

Baked brie cheese in a puff pastry with raspberry filling. It was to die for! 

I tasted this stuffed zuchini with sausage, tomatoes and cheese too. It was great. 

Gotta have some chili! 
I had some of this veggie dish too. The white sauce was yummy as were the mushrooms. 

Somebody made zuchini bread of course….gotta use those zuchinis up, right?  

We even had a few dudes who showed up to share garden stories! 
Mostly it was a gals garden party. 

I’ve done progressive dinner garden parties in the past. That is a lot of fun too because then you get to SEE so many pretty gardens and you get new ideas for your own. Each host gave a little instructional snippet about something they grow or an area of flowers that they’ve had great success with, or something like that.

She had tons of tall pine trees that blocked out the last of the sun. It was the perfect time of night and perfect weather. 
More pretty decoration….
Here are my homemade dinner rolls in a pretty fall ceramic bowl….
Another pretty bowl….loved it….

Spring greens salad with strawberries 

 Did I mention we had lots of great salads? All kinds of veggie and fruit salads were spread all over the tables. I tried a few and they all were awesome.

Fresh raspberries in this salad with spinach too…
I had fun talking my brains out to all my friends in the neighborhood of course…..under all these great pine trees! 
It was a great evening. And what a great theme party idea it was too! 

Football Season Fun Snacks

Well, we have the Sunday Night Football going on at my house, and it is going STRONG! My daughter and her husband both have fantasy football teams too. It’s another year of my favorite fall sports.

Are YOU going to ROOT for my team? 
This little girl does….Go BYU! GO, FIGHT, WIN! 

 Over the loudspeaker Friday morning at school our principal played the BYU fight song instead of the school song. It was so funny because it took me a few minutes to realize what song was happening. I thought at first it must be a mistake….. it was pretty funny. There are football rivalries that run high in my community!

So in honor of the rivalry game today, I made my husband some football pancakes for breakfast to go along with his sausage and eggs.  Cute right? 

HERE is a cute Football Player Printout. that gave me the idea for these cute football outfits the kids made.

I loved this cute football player out of felt. But it could just as easily be construction paper.  Here are some of the ones we did last year. The paper legs were just out of newsprint. The kids pictures are inside the helmets. And of course, they did their favorite team’s jerseys and cheer outfits and then wrote about their favorite teams. But HERE are some of my favorite football snack recipes. Gotta love a good pig in a blanket right?

I made this brie cheese baked in a puff pastry last year during the Super Bowl…it’s so easy and yummy!
The recipe is on the Puff Pastry website as well as a video How To Do Puff Pastry.  

And you can’t beat a Texas Caviar dip (black bean and corn salsa) . Recipes is  HERE.

What is YOUR favorite football team? Cougars? Utes? 

 Lots of BYU BLUE represented for sure!  Rise and Shout the Cougars are OUT!

Make Your Own Wraps are always a great Party Food Option, especially for those health conscious sports fans….and guys always love any kind of mini sandwich on hogie breads. Or you can make them on white dinner rolls. 
Or make a homemade pizza or two are always appreciated…YUMM……check it out HERE.

Pizzas are always great for a Football Party Snack. You can’t go wrong!  Make your own in your little cast iron fry pans! 
The girls had a “pom pom” added to their outfits…..
The boys had a football added to their outfits…… I know, I’m not very PC am I?

Gotta Love some Football chocolate cookies, now don’t ya? Get a tablecloth from the dollar store or a party store. I got a bunch of stuff after the Super Bowl last year on clearance, so I’m set!

Ya just gotta love those “cleats” now dontcha? 

 A free printable of the FOOTBALL subway art is below. It’s cute at the house for a football party, and it is cute on a bulletin board too! HERE is a Football Printable   Football helmet printables football helmet printables HERE

I hope the Utes don’t blow us away! I’m keeping my fingers crossed. 
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Cute Football Player color and cut-out activity great for little kiddos….

One more thing I found that I thought would be a fun thing to do for my grandkids to keep them busy during the games coming up. They love to color and cut out things like paper dolls. So how about a paper football player? Maybe in team colors! Making has the download.

Football Subway Art 
Martha Stewart had a few “Football Snacks” that looked kinda delicious to serve at your Football Tailgate Party too ! Check them out at Martha Stewart’s website. I love little smokies in a piggy blanket! Yummy. Have fun with the football fanatics at your house! 

Cookbook Storage Ideas

My New Cookbook Storage corner shelf! I’m psyched! It’s great to have them all in one place!

I was looking on Pinterest for some ways to store my mountain of cookbooks I have accumulated. I must have about 40 cookbooks! I know….I’ve got cookbook obsession worries myself! As I was browsing Pinterest I saw a few cute display ideas for cookbooks in kitchens.

Ikea Bookshelves
I loved this one with kiddie books that I thought I could kinda copy….. so I ran over to Ikea and bought 4 of these wooden spice racks  to put on my kitchen on a side wall.
 But it didn’t look as good as I thought it would, once I put one of them up….seemed kinda crowded. 
Rainbow of cookbooks
This lady calls herself Cookbook Freak. And I think this is quite an amazing collection!  (and the color coding is cute)
 But I have no shelves in the kitchen to use! Gotta keep looking! 
I really liked THIS BEAUTIFUL cookbook storage idea…only I have no extra wall space in my kitchen.
So…….. I kept on looking.

basket for cookbooks
I LOVED this wire basket cookbook storing idea the very best, just on the kitchen counter. But
knowing me I’d spill something and ruin all my lovely cookbooks…so I started thinking…..
maybe I could find something in my own house to repurpose or something? Hmmm……

My empty corner shelf I dragged in from the greatroom….I think it will work for cookbook storing! 
Then, AHA! I remembered I had this corner shelf that was in our greatroom before we took up all the carpet
in there. We are in the process of putting in real oak flooring. It’s really a MESS! Dust
everywhere. So I dragged that corner shelf into the kitchen.

I put it in a corner. And I tried out a few cookbooks  on it.  And I loved it!

AND, I happened to have an empty corner by the glass door!  It looks pretty
good there, doesn’t it? So I wiped and dusted it off, (since it’s been in the messy walls-being-sanded,  great room) 
I’m so tired of the dust in there, let me tell you! Why do remodeling projects take SOOOO LOOOONG? 

And then I added all my cookbooks to it.  I still have a little room for more of them, too!  It’s getting
close to Cookbook Hoarders, ( I know what you are thinking!)

So I added knick knacks to the cookbook shelves too….it was fun! Gotta have a Betty Crocker 
cookbook in your collection! 

 Last year I sent away for the silver Master Chef cookbook too. Very cool recipes in there!

 This is my favorite cookbook with recipes of top restaurants from all over. It’s fun to recreate those yummy things!

And the Jessica Seinfeld cookbook Deceptively Delicious is a really fun read AND it has great recipes too!

So now I always know where my recipes and cookbooks are…instead of squeezing them
in 3 different places in my kitchen and pantry cupboards and above the microwave.

Here is my finished cookbook storage shelf. Now I can find any of my 40 something (hoarders R US) 
cookbook at just a glance. It makes me feel kinda organized. Even though I’m soooo NOT! 

I love my new kitchen corner….my cookbook corner. It was a great solution for me and
this old, corner, shelf. I  REALLY like how it turned out. 


Homemade Bread, Rolls and Pizza Dough in One!

This is my favorite bread recipe. It will make 5 loaves of bread. But I usually use a few of the dough loaves and make Pizza, Rolls and Cinnamon Rolls too. One of the 5 loaves of dough is great for a thin crust large or a medium 12 inch on a pizza stone or a deep dish in a cast iron large skillet.  
I used to work at Pizza Hut and those cast iron skillets were the way we baked the Pizzas. They used a ton of oil in the pans but boy, you could just pop those suckers out so easily! And they were delicious too! My favorite was the Meat Lover’s Pizza. mmm…..
But today I just cut up whatever veggies I had in the fridge.  I didn’t have very many! 
But I had some leftover Jimmy Dean Sausage patties and several kinds of cheeses. 

I just used the Costco brand Marinara sauce for the Pizza sauce and a mixture of grated cheeses.
Use shortcuts when you can! And How easy is that? 
I use a little less than a whole bread loaf for a 12 inch pizza. I add a bit more
 to one of the roll
dough pieces for Cinnamon Rolls. 

My Pizza dough, sauce and cheese went on the Pizza stone first.
Then I looked around for a few more toppings….
These are 3 leftover patties of Jimmie Dean precooked sausage 
I used for
Sausage, Egg and Cheese on a Biscuit one morning. I just
microwaved them for a minute and chopped them up
  Okay, Homemade Supreme Pizza,  It’s almost ready….what else does it need?
HEY! I’ve got some olives in the pantry. How about those? 

So I sliced those in half and spread them out on the pizza. Just about done! 

RECIPE FOR HOMEMADE BREAD makes 5 soft, chewy loaves
3/4 Cup warm water
1 Tablespoons Sugar
2 Tablespoons Yeast
Mix together and set aside. 

4 Cups Scalded Milk                1 Cup Sugar
2 eggs                                         1 Tablespoon Salt
1/2 Cup Oil                                10 to 12 Cups of Flour

Sprinkle yeast into the   warm water and let sit for 3 minutes undisturbed. Then add the 1 Tablespoon of sugar and mix up (sugar feeds yeast). Set bowl aside. 

Then in your Mixmaster mix up all the wet ingredients, (milk, eggs, oil) and add in the sugar. Then add half of the flour  (5 cups) and mix in your Mixmaster. If I am adding 1 cup of wheat flour I add 1 Tablespoon of dough enhancer so my bread is still light. You can buy it online or at the Bosch Store.

 Then add the yeast mixture in and keep mixing. Then add one cup at a time of flour till you get to the 10 cups total.  Keep mixing. Then add just 1/2 cups of flour (up to 12 cups…I hardly ever even do 11 cups) at a time till your dough starts to separate from sides of the bowl kneading for a total of about 8 minutes. 

Set plastic over your dough in a greased bowl and let rise for 45 to 60 minutes. Punch dough down and separate it into 5 rolls for bread. Grease loaf pans and let dough rise in 5 loaf pans for 30 to 45 minutes till they are just about an inch over the pan.  I sometimes turn the oven on real low and leave it open and put all 5 pans on top of the stove so they are warming while rising. 

When they have risen 1/2 inch over the tops of the pans Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden on tops. Bread will rise a bit more while baking.  If you are making rolls with some of the loaves only bake for 15 to 18 minutes, watching them for a golden brown color. 

Sometimes I do a few bread loaves and then make pizza with one loaf and some Cinnamon Rolls with another loaf and dinner rolls, like those above, with another loaf too. And sometimes I freeze a roll of dough for rolls or cinnamon rolls for later. 

Bread just starting to rise in the pan…..and rolls have risen pretty good already. 

Cloverleaf and dinner rolls all baked up ready to eat! 

                                       Homemade Dinner Rolls and Homemade Pizza….yum!
 It’s fun to experiment and play with bread dough. And it’s just plain yummy just out of the oven with hot, melted butter too! mmm….

I did 2 homemade loaves of bread, 1 pizza, 1 set of dinner rolls,
 and I froze a loaf in the freezer for next week sometime. 
Here’s my supreme pizza all done and ready to eat! I want a thick pizza crust, I will precook just t
the rolled out pizza dough for 10 or 12 minutes first in a hot 425 oven. Then I’ll do sauce, cheese, and toppings. Then cook it for longer, another 10 or 12 minutes to prevent that middle of the pizza from not cooking and tasting raw.  
If your Pizza dough is thin enough you don’t have to worry about it being doughy in the center
section as much. Just bake for 15 to 18 minutes on 425.
The dough is delicious and really makes the pizza wonderful. 
And the bread doesn’t turn out half bad either! My family loves it. 
The rewards of my labor….here’s a bite! 

Or try one of these instead! Oh heavenly yum! Nothing like it!