Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Jacki's Minestrone, Rolls, and Crisp

We enjoyed this meal a couple of weeks ago.  We all really enjoyed it! Our group consisted of my parents and Richard and me. The Minestrone Soup hit the spot with our colder weather. It was easy and straight forward to make - just some prep work for the veggies. I forgot to add the peas at the end but it was still very good and  hearty. I used one can kidney beans and one can pinto because that is what we had. I also used dried parsley instead of fresh.  
The Heavenly Rolls were indeed heavenly! Easy enough to make - no kneading needed. I skipped the part about the plastic bag and just let it rise in the bowl. I also used bread flour.  I used instant yeast so just added the yeast to the flour  before mixing and skipped the softening/activating step.
For the Fruit Crisp I used apples - homegrown from the family orchard! It was easy to prepare and cook. I forgot to add the brown sugar to the topping but it was still good. We had it with vanilla ice cream. My mom made it again with all of the sugar and it was delicious again!
I also made a fruit salad to go with the meal. I thought all three of these recipes were good and solid and would definitely fix them all again.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Time to get cooking again! I know everyone is busy with work, family, home renovations etc. so I am not sure what our schedule should be - every week, every other week? For now we will start with 3 recipes from our new book - The Romney Family Table.
Minestrone Soup. 99
Josh's Heavenly Rolls. 90
Fruit Crisp.    174

Happy cooking!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Rutter Kitchen- Menu #10

We started our cooking night with Dana and Johnny making the Fudge Crinkle Cookies.  So easy since it was only 4 ingredients.  After she got the cookies baking I started the pasta cooking while Dana prepared the filling for the Stuffed Mexican Chicken Shells.  We did half this recipe, since we wanted to try it first before making so much.  Don't want leftovers that people won't eat ;) She followed the recipe and got them stuffed and in the oven.  When Ashley got there she fixed the Fast Three-Bean Salad.  She followed the recipe except we decided to serve the romaine lettuce on the side, so any leftovers wouldn't have limp lettuce.  Now for our review.  We really liked this menu!  The pasta had really good flavor and everyone liked it.  The bean salad was really good also.  I just put some of the lettuce on my plate and put the bean mixture on top.  The salad was even better the next day.  The cookies were fantastic.  I thought they were similar to fudgy brownies.  I think that we will fix these recipes again, especially the bean salad and cookies :)

Monday, June 22, 2015

Rutter Kitchen- Menu #52

Johnny crushing the graham crackers

We finally had a chance to fix the Low-Fat Turkey Bacon Wrap,
Sweet Spaghetti Squash and the S'mores Kiss Cookies.  I cooked the bacon the day before which worked great.  Let me say that these wraps should actually be called Bacon cheese lettuce tomato wraps, as we used regular bacon :)  Most of our group doesn't care for turkey bacon, so why use it.  I prepped the spaghetti squash and cooked it for about an hour.  The hardest part I think to this recipe was cutting the squash in half.  Where are my guys when I need them!  Between Dana, Johnny and me we made the cookies.  Dana finished them up and they looked so good.  Dana and Ashley finished up the spaghetti squash and put it in a casserole dish to warm it back up in the oven.  Now for our review.  Everything tasted good, except for some of us the spaghetti squash.  I think I needed to cook it longer and some of us prefer it to be savory and not sweet.  We also thought that it was strange to have this dish paired with the wrap.  The cookies were great, especially the cookie dough :)  Once again we enjoyed trying this menu out.  I will for sure fix the Bacon wraps again!

Rutter Kitchen- Menu#11

We have been behind on our menu's, so we chose the Slow Cooker Creamy Spaghetti, Cheesy Artichoke Bread and the Almond Joy Cookies.  This cookbook has me enjoying my slow cooker again.  I cooked the Italian sausage that morning, so that afternoon all I had to do was assemble the ingredients in the slow cooker.  I cooked it for about 3 1/2 hours and then added the last two ingredients.  Dana fixed the cookies and they looked so simple to make.  Dana and Ashley fixed the Cheesy Artichoke Bread and it didn't take them long to get it in the oven.  It sure smelled good while it was cooking :)  Now for our review.  We thought everything tasted good.  We thought the spaghetti had good flavors and wasn't too spicy for the little ones.  It was fun to try it in the slow cooker, but I still prefer my usual way of cooking the pasta and sauce separate from each other.  I used the thin spaghetti that I usually use and think that a regular spaghetti might be better.  The bread was really good and the leftovers got taken home :)  The cookies were wonderful if you like Almond Joy candy bars, which some of us including me does, yay!  It was a fun menu to make :)

Rutter Kitchen- Menu #49

I started the Slow Cooker Breakfast Casserole that morning for our meal that night.  I had prepped all the food the day before and that morning, so all I had to do was assemble it in its layers in the slow cooker when it was time.  Closer to meal time I fixed and baked the Banana Crumb Muffins(loaf).  When Ashley got there that evening after work, she assembled the Citrus Fruit Salad.  Now for our review.  I will say that I really liked the nice simple menu and we also liked everything!  I thought that the breakfast casserole had really good flavor and was moist, even though for some reason I only added half the eggs ;)  We topped the dish with salsa, green onions and avocados.  The fruit salad and muffins also tasted really good.  We liked the simpleness of the fruit salad with just a little OJ for a dressing.  I think I overcooked the banana loaf just a little bit, but it was still good.  I really enjoyed this menu and would fix it again :)

Rutter Kitchen- Menu #30

We fixed this menu for Mother's Day, so I got to pick it :) We started off by marinating the 5-Star Grilled Chicken Teriyaki the night before to hopefully give it a good flavor.  The fresh vegetables and Dill Dip were very simple to make, especially since I picked up a fresh veggie tray at Sam's Club.  We followed the recipe for the dip and used Miracle whip as that is what I had.  Next Dana baked the Raspberry Lemonade Cupcakes.  They were interesting to make as it called for a variety of ingredients.  I thought Dana did a really good job fixing them.  She fixed the frosting while they were baking and stored it in the fridge until the cupcakes were cooked and cooled.  Closer to meal time, she piped on the frosting and added the raspberries.  When Ashley got there, she started in on some garlic roasted potatoes that we have cooked from a previous menu.  We felt like we needed to add something filling to the menu besides chicken and fresh veggies.  Meanwhile, the guys got the charcoal going and then when ready started grilling.  We used chicken thighs and a few chicken breasts.  Everything smell so good! 
Now for our review.  We liked everything!  The dip tasted really good with the fresh veggies and of course we all liked the roasted potatoes or we wouldn't have fixed them again.  The chicken had really good flavor and was tender.  The cupcakes looked and tasted good.  The boys especially enjoyed trying them :)  We will fix this menu again!  

New Menu For Week of June 21, 2015

Let's make menu 10

Stuffed Mexican Chicken Shells
Fast Three-Bean Salad
Fudge Crinkle Cookies

I think this will be the last week of cooking for the summer since vacations and other warm weather activities are in full swing. If any of you want to cook and post any of the menus we have not done yet over the summer feel free to. We will start back up in the fall cooking from Ann Romney's cookbook
The Romney Family Table.  Have a great summer and I will see most of you at the family reunion soon!

Jacki's Review of Menu 47

We had a great taste testing group a couple of days ago for menu 47. My parents, Richards parents and the two of us enjoyed the meal. I am sad I didn't take a picture of all of us together:(.  First off, the Spinach and Artichoke Sandwich Melts were SO GOOD!  I made the recipe as directed and it made plenty for the 6 of us. I couldn't find jarred grilled artichoke hearts so I just used regular canned artichoke hearts. Everyone liked this recipe and it was fairly easy to make. I liked that it was a "lighter" version.
The Fluffy Raspberry Jell-O Salad was delicious as well. The only thing I changed was I used thawed frozen raspberries instead of fresh and that worked well. The raspberries were softer and the juice added good flavor.. I didn't care for the Hershey's Cream Cheese Brownies too much but I did over cook them and I only had 1 tsp of vanilla and the recipe called for 4 so that probably contributed to it. I cooked them for about 45 minutes and that was probably 5 minutes too long. In addition to cooking them less I would also put them in the fridge for long enough to harden the chocolate on top. These were all fun recipes to try. I served fresh fruit and potato chips as side dishes and also strawberry ice cream with the brownies.  

Sunday, June 14, 2015

New Menu (47)

Let's try menu 47 this week!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Jacki's Menu 29 Review

We just finished up our dinner of Menu 29 and it was a good one. The Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Meatballs were very easy to prepare and delicious. I served them over some Jasmine Rice. The one change I would make is to use 2 jars of the 10 oz Sweet and Sour Sauce instead of just one. I used the Walmart brand of homestyle meatballs and they were really good. I let it cook for 4 hours. The Balsamic Asparagus was delicious. I didn't drizzle the sauce over all the asparagus because we have a couple of non adventurous eaters in the group:). So I served the sauce in a little bowl for people to add their own. Very tasty.  The 5-Minute Jello Salad was a little sweet for our liking but that might have been my fault because I used a big box of jello and just eyeballed it. I would add less jello next time. I think this would be really good with raspberry jello and raspberries. I served some homemade bread and fresh apricots as additions to roundout this meal. Fast, easy, fun menu to cook!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

New Menu for Week June 7, 2015

Not too many menus left! Let's try Menu 29 this week.
Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Meatballs
Balsamic Asparagus
5-Minute Jello Salad

Jacki's Review of Menu 30

We just finished up enjoying menu 30. It was delicious and we all liked it. The 5-Star Grilled Chicken Teriyaki was so good! I used chicken thighs and they were very tender and flavorful. Richard grilled them and they were perfect. I used a homemade teriyaki sauce (1/4 cup each of brown sugar, vegetable oil, orange juice, and soy sauce with 1/2 tsp. Ginger) and marinated the chicken for about 7 hours. The Fresh Vegetables with Vegetable Dill dip was tasty as well. I thought the dill dip was very good and easy to mix up. I let it meld in the fridge for about 7 hours. I served the dip with carrots, celery, red bell pepper, and cucumbers. I added jasmine rice cooked in chicken broth and a fresh fruit salad as sides and my mom contributed a nice zucchini bread loaf. The dessert of Raspberry Lemonade Cupcakes was a real treat. I cut the recipe in half and am so glad I did because I would have just eaten the other half! The store I went to didn't have sweetened raspberry lemonade drink or the frozen raspberry lemonade concentrate so I just used the pink lemonade for both and it was fine. The frosting mixed up to a nice consistency and had a good flavor. And, the cupcakes were nice and moist. I would make all of these recipes again!