Tuesday was Henry’s birthday! We went to go see Neighbors, which was pretty funny and I would recommend to anyone who doesn’t think the movie looks stupid. And if it looks stupid to you, well then I guess Henry and I are stupid! After the movie we made Weight Watchers Cheddar Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta. It was really really good! Ours didn’t look like that picture that we found but it was still great! All of the directions we found were not very detailed, so we just kinda winged some of it.
Here are the directions we found (in parentheses is the directions we made up ourselves)
||whole wheat penne pasta
||chicken breast, boneless & skinless, cut into bite sized pieces
||all purpose flour
||ranch dressing mix ( 1/2 oz)
||fat free milk
||fat free shredded cheddar cheese
||salt & pepper to taste
1. Cook pasta according to package directions in boiling salted water; drain, return to pot, and keep warm. (we waited to put the pasta in the boiling water until we started to cook the chicken.)
2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Drain all but 1/2 tablespoon of bacon drippings from the pan. (We didn’t have any extra grease to take out)
3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the butter to the reserved bacon drippings, then add the chicken to the same skillet. Cook until tender, no longer pink, and slightly browned. (In order to get the chicken to cook faster, we cut up the chicken before hand, then cooked it)
4. Sprinkle the flour and ranch dressing mix over the chicken, stirring to coat evenly. Stir in the milk, and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the cheddar cheese and half of the reserved bacon; cook and stir until the cheese is melted. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. ( Our sauce became fairly thick, so next time we will try turning down the heat during this step. The sauce wasn’t really a spreadable sauce to put over the noodles.
Serve each plate of pasta with more bacon sprinkled over the top.
Here is what ours looked like
This was our success. Our dessert on the other hand was a different story. I found a picture of a chocolate chip cookie dough sundae cup and thought those would be fun and easy to make. And while we were making them it seems just fine, but when we pulled them out we found that was not the case. Ours turned out to look like this
So we just ate ice cream instead. Over all he had a great birthday! For his present he is getting something that is related to his gift everyday until the 21st and he has been told to keep the 22nd completely free of plans. So far he got a bag or Air Heads, chalk, and a bag with dirt and grass. I don’t think he has any ideas as to what it could be yet! My plan is working! Stay turned to see what he gets!
This weekend kicked off my summer vacation! It was a relaxing and fun filled weekend! I got to spend time with Henry and his family while my parents were out of town. I got my butt kicked in croquet not once, but twice by Henry and his parents on Saturday before we went out to dinner for Henrys birthday on Tuesday. I plan to beat all of them one of these days…maybe.
This was also my first Mother’s day not spent with my mom. Her and dad were down in Searcy helping Erika and Alex set up Connor’s nursery. So I got to spend it with Henry and his family. His brother’s came up with the idea of recreating their mother’s day gift from when they were kids, but actually including Henry this time. When his brothers were kids they gave their mom hand-print molds, but Henry never made one. So they made one this year with all 3 of them. And boy was it a hoot to see them try to get that plaster to work for them! But it turned out great and Jan loved it!
Friday night Henry and I wanted to make dinner together, so where do we look? No other place than Pinterest! Everytime I go through my foods board I realize how many dessert recipes I repin vs actual dishes haha! We didn’t have too many options on my foods board, so we went with a Meatball Casserole. It was super easy and you get to make your own, homemade meatballs! The meatball recipe can easily be used to make them and use them in another one of your favorite dishes as well. The only problem we had with the meatballs was they sticked to the pan because the juices leaked out and burned, sticking them to the pan. Next time I will try putting some foil down to resolve that issue. The casserole would also be great on hoagie buns! We didn’t take any pictures of it but here is what the site we used had:
Here are the instructions and the link to the website we found it on: http://www.shugarysweets.com/2014/02/meatball-parmesan-casserole?crlt.pid=camp.TFRqvggELMGG
Delicious baked turkey meatballs in a saucy cheesy casserole!
For the meatballs:
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning
- 3 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 6 cranks fresh ground black pepper
For the casserole:
- 1 jar (24oz) spaghetti sauce
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
For the meatballs:
- In large bowl, mix together the meatball ingredients until combined evenly (I use my hands). Roll into 40 balls (about 1 1/2-2 inches). Space evenly on prepared baking sheet. Bake in a 425 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.
For the casserole:
- Pour half of the spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 2qt baking dish. Top with meatballs. Pour remaining sauce over meatballs. Top with shredded parmesan and mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 5 minutes, until cheese is melted.
- Serve as is, or with a pile of pasta. Also great on a sub sandwich!
The whole reason for my blog originally started because this summer I want to try a bunch of new recipes, so I thought, why not blog about them and share my experiences, good and bad, with others. Then my mom and I started planning on doing projects together over the summer, so I thought why not blog about those too? And from there it just turned into a blog about everything!
One thing I hope to blog a lot about is my summer bucket list. Last summer Henry and I talked about all kinds of things we wanted to do but we never did many of them. That wasn’t because we were lazy, but because we would just plumb forget about the different things we wanted to do until it was too late. So I suggested that this year we each write our own Summer Bucket Lists so we would remember and be more motivated to do more things this summer. So far here is my list:
- Meet Connor (my nephew that is due in July)
- Go on a Camping Trip
- Play Paint Balloon Darts (like they do in Princess Diaries)
- Make a Blog (hence this blog)
- Watch the Sunrise
- Stay Outside All Night (camping doesn’t count)
- Read 3 Books
- Go to Starved Rock
- Babysit Emmy and Burke (my cousin’s kids)
- Redo My Night Stand
- Redo My Grandma’s Desk
- Get My Watch Fix (finally)
- Go to The Old Spaghetti Factory
- Go to The Spaghetti Shop
- Go to The Jelly Belly Factory (they give FREE tours! How cool is that?!)
- Double Date with Molly and Luke (Henry’s cousin and her boyfriend)
- Fly a Kite
Some of these things I have already done, like camping and flying a kite, but want to do again and others are going to be brand new experiences, like going to the Jelly Belly Factory in Wisconsin. I am beyond excited to see what this summer has in store!
So here’s to a great summer, hopefully keeping up with posting, and not boring everyone to death!