Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Don't Buy Easter Egg Dyeing Kits Anymore! Stop the Madness!

Ok, so my title may be a little over dramatic. However, I stand behind it. I have bought countless easter egg dyeing kits for my kids over the years. It is a huge waste of money. Yes, they are fun, but we had more fun using what we already had around the house.

The Dye

Pour about a 1/2 cup of vinegar into a mug or cup. Add desired amounts food coloring to the food dye. Done.

This is all you need. You may already have it all. I just saved you a trip to the store. 

Once the hard boiled eggs are completely cooled, let the kids do their thing. We used electrical tape, googly eyes, candle wax and a black sharpie. We didn't have to look farther than our kitchen for any of these items.

Electrical tape = crazy egg stripe
  For polka dots, dip a pencil eraser into some warm, melted candle wax (help the kids with this!) and make polka dots all over your egg before dropping it into the dye. 

Our creations. Home made. Simple. Good stuff.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Veggies on the Grill

Want a quick, easy, super healthy veggie side dish for the grill? Here it is...

This is all you need. Boom.
Find some gorgeous greens. I used asparagus, brussel sprouts and broccoli. All of these veggies are super nutritious and once you prepare them this way, they are also super delicious! 

Simply cut the sprouts in half and lay them on aluminum foil along with the broccoli and asparagus. Drizzle olive oil over the top of everything. Sprinkle sea salt and ground pepper over the top. Seal the foil and place it on the grill for about 15 min on medium heat or until you reach the desired "donenesss." Yumm 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Two Canned Chicken Recipes. Yes, Canned.

Chicken Tamale Pie

This dish has made the weekly dinner rotation at our house. It is so easy to make and my husband can't eat it fast enough. I even served it at a small dinner party and everyone devoured it. Be warned - it is addicting!!

The original recipe that inspired me was from the blog Pinch of Yum (incredible blog by the way). Her tamale pie is gorgeous, mine is not as pretty but just as tasty! This is my version. Most ingredients are canned which makes this budget friendly and you can keep everything on hand.

Ingredients -
2 cans of canned white chicken (9.75 oz)
1 can of red enchilada sauce
1 can of creamed corn
1 can of black beans - or pinto if you prefer
1 can of diced green chiles (4.0 oz)
1 box of jiffy corn muffin mix (8.5 oz)
1 packet of taco seasoning
1/4 teaspoon of ground red pepper
1/3 cup of milk
2 eggs
Some cheese to grate and put on top. Any kind you like.

This is all you need. So affordable. So easy.

What to Do-
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the following:

1/2 the packet of taco seasoning
Red pepper
Muffin Mix
Green chiles

Stir everything together until it is well combined. Pour the mixture into a glass cooking dish that you have sprayed with cooking spray.  Cook the mixture for about 25 minutes. It should be golden brown when it is ready.

A nice golden brown top

While the mixture is baking you will want to cook the chicken on the stovetop. Add the rest of the taco seasoning packet with the chicken. Make sure all the chicken is coated. Keep the chicken warm/cooking until the corn mixture is done.

Once the corn mixture is ready, take it out of the oven and pierce it with a fork several times. Pour the enchilada sauce over it. Put the chicken on top. Sprinkle cheese over it. Put it back in the oven for about another 15 minutes. You can sprinkle more cheese before you serve it. We eat ours with a dollop or two of sour cream.


Ok, so my picture of the finished version isn't pretty. But every time I make this, someone digs into it before I can take a nice picture. Seriously. This stuff is good.

Half gone already. The tamale bandits got to it.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

I came up with this recipe on a cold, rainy Sunday when we were desperate for soup with some kick. I was also not going out in the rain, so I used what I had on hand.

In a soup pot filled a little less than halfway with water, boil 3-4 chicken bouillon cubes to create a broth. Add 2 cans of canned white chicken, 1 can of corn, 1 can of black beans, 1 can of dices tomatoes (my can had lime juice and cilantro in it), 1 4 oz can of diced green chiles, and 1 can of red enchilada sauce. 

Simple canned ingredients. And always wine in the background...

Let everything simmer for about 30 minutes or so. We served ours with a bit of sour cream on top and some crushed tortilla chips.My hubby was very impressed with my soup improvisation. Yum.