Category Archives: winter

Paula Deen inspired Snow Ice Cream

That photo is from right when we woke up this morning. Three hours later, there is a lot more.  So we made snow ice cream. For breakfast. (hey, everyone is home sick, and I’m working off only several hours sleep)

Paula Deen’s recipe called for one can of sweetened condensed milk, a bit of vanilla and 8 cups of snow. Instructions said to mix everything together and dish out all 8-10 servings at once.  We didn’t need 8-10 servings, so we halved the recipe.

It made snow ice cream milkshakes.  And each of my 3 kids got maybe 1/2 cup with half the recipe.  So next time I’d do 8 cups of snow and still start with 1/2 a can of sweetened condensed milk and vanilla, adding more if you had to.

The kids still loved it, so success.


Warm Spiced Milk

Adapted from The Family Kitchen.  I served this instead of hot chocolate this morning for our decorating the tree treat (with cinnamon rolls!).

  • 4 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

I nuked the milk for about 3 minutes, added all the ingredients, tasted and adjusted spices, then finished heating until warmed just right.  My kids would’ve been thrilled with the same amount of sugar and half the rest of the spices, but they liked it enough to drink it all up.

Melanie’s Beef Stew

Thank goodness I had this saved on email so I didn’t have to call Melanie and ask her for this recipe (for the 5th time at least). I’m making this tomorrow for a break from turkey leftovers.

Brown some stew meat (about 1 lb) and throw it in a crockpot.

3 cups water
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp. worchestershire sauce
clove of garlic
1 medium onion, sliced
2 bay leaves
1 T. salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp sugar
Simmer for at least 2 hours
Add carrots and red potatoes, cook until tender (usually a few more hours)
Blend 4 Tbsp flour in cold water until smooth.  Stir into stew to make gravy.
We also throw in some extra salt, maybe some seasoning salt, and I always throw in a little garlic.   Just use whatever you love.

Tomato-Basil Soup

My friend, Heidi, brought this soup to our soup swap this week and we LOVED it.  Nathan is a huge fan of tomato soup, but I can’t stand the stuff in the can.  This has a hint of orange that makes it more full flavored.  From the cookbook Fix, Freeze, Feast.  As written, this recipe makes 3 entrees, each which serve 4 people.

1/2 cup butter
3 cups chopped onion (about 3 medium)
1 t minced garlic (3 cloves)
3 lbs Roma tomatoes, chopped
8 c chicken broth
1 T lime juice
pinch sugar
3/4 c chopped fresh basil leaves
zest of one orange

Melt butter in stockpot over low heat.  Add onions and cook, stirring, until soft, about 15 minutes. Add garlic; cook, stirring, 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes, broth, lime juice and sugar; bring to boil.  Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.  Stir in basil and orange zest.

Let soup cool slightly; transfer to a food processor and puree.  If you’re freezing for later, divide cooled soup into bags, seal and freeze.


Loaded Baked Potatoes

I think we’ll do loaded baked potatoes for dinner tonight.  It’s still cold and snowy and something warm and low effort sounds perfect. I thought I’d make a list of toppings that we like and that sound good – did I miss your favorite?  Let me know!

melted cheddar
bacon crumbles
green onions
black beans
kidney beans
bleu cheese (with the bacon – yum!)
sour cream
small cubes of ham
shredded taco chicken or beef

(Can you tell I just went through the Sweet Tomatoes line in my mind?!)

We just decided to plant potatoes in our garden for the first time.  I wonder how much better these will taste in the fall with FRESH homegrown potatoes.