Carnival Family Photos

This last weekend there was a local carnival in town and we decided to stop in for a bit and enjoy the crazy atmosphere. I love when my hubby spontaneously decides to do something fun like this!
In the midst of the chaos, I managed to grab a couple of good photos, so here ya go:
Aren’t they cute?
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K offering me some of her marshmallow treat:
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I managed to get this shot while we were spinning around on the “teacup” ride:
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Ever seen deep-fried oreos before?
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Hubby sliding down the fun house slide-he and K went in together, and I tried to get pics, but most didn’t turn out:
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Published in: on April 23, 2008 at 12:38 pm  Comments (6)  
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As promised, How to Make Homemade Pizza!

It really amazes me that I haven’t yet made a blog entry about homemade pizza, as it’s an almost weekly thing around here! It’s a semi-tradition that we do hm pizza once a weekend, but of course, as with all traditions, this goes by the wayside when things happen that keep us from doing this. This weekend I was able to pull it off, though, and I thought I’d share a quick tutorial on the making of a homemade pizza.

First, I make the dough-which I don’t have pics of, but here’s the recipe I use:
http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Jays-Signature-Pizza-Crust/Detail.aspx
I always oil the pan, then brush the dough with oil before baking.
I pre-bake the crust for 5-7 minutes, pricking it with a fork before putting it in the oven. This guarantees that the dough isn’t soggy under the heavy load of toppings that I tend to put on my pizzas.

Next, comes the sauce, pour some sauce in the center of the dough and spread out in a circular motion using the back of a large spoon:
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You can’t forget the cheese! I use about 8 oz. of mozzarella/monterrey jack cheese mixed together, and yes, I grate my own unless I’m in a serious time crunch, because it tastes so much better!
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I pre-cook my italian sausage and drain it before putting the sausage on the pizza so it doesn’t make the pizza greasy.
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Next is the ham, K prefers the chunks of ham to the thinly sliced kind, so that’s what I use. You don’t have to, but I usually toss the ham in a skillet for a couple of minutes so it’s no longer cold when it goes on the pizza.
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You had to know I wasn’t done with the cheese, right? I like to put a second layer of cheese on top of the toppings so that it holds it all together better when cut.
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Bake for 20 minutes or so and you’ll have nice hot pizza, ready to slice.
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Finally, let the pizza cool for about 5 minutes so the cheese has time to solidify a bit before slicing it up to enjoy, you’ll be glad you did!
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Published in: on April 22, 2008 at 11:20 am  Comments (8)  
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Banana Upside-Down Cake

Well, as you know, I’m an adventurous girl and I like to try new things when possible. I found this recipe a couple of months ago, but waited till the family was back to make it-it was an instant hit! A little unorthodox, perhaps, but delicious none-the-less! The recipe can be found here:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Banana-Upside-Down-Cake/Detail.aspx?prop31=4

A quick mini-tutorial:

The brown sugar, butter, and pecans in the bottom of pan:
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The bananas go on top of that:
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Then we mix the cake mix up as directed:
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And pour into pans on top of bananas like this:
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Put it in the oven and bake for 40 minutes as directed by the recipe, turn upside down onto a plate, and this is what you end up with:
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Well, in reality, you end up with 2 of those out of one cake mix, so we ate one as a family and took the other cake over to some missionary friends of ours that are staying in the missionary’s quarters of our church off and on this summer. They almost immediately called us back with a big thank you for the cake, so I’m really glad we were able to bless them like that!

Awesome Hamburger Buns!

Just ’cause I like makin’ y’all drool, I had to post a picture of the best homemade hamburger buns I’ve ever made (or tasted!)…thanks so much to my friend, V, who gave up the recipe! So tonight we had Grilled Cheesy Bacon Butter Burgers on homemade buns with lettuce, pickles, mustard, and mayo, bbq chips, and fresh sweet corn on the cob for dinner. I have pics of the buns and my burger, but I got too hungry to show you the rest, lol, so here they are:
Buns, fresh out of the oven:
Hamburger Buns

The building of a masterpiece:
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And the finished burger:
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Published in: on April 17, 2008 at 9:35 pm  Comments (13)  
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Ahhh…a Bake Sale!

Some of you may be wondering why I’m up at midnight posting, and I actually have an answer to that for once! You see, tomorrow is the youth’s bake sale at our church. They do several fundraisers in the spring to raise money for camp, and we fully support their efforts wherever possible. I especially love the bake sale, b/c as y’all know, I love to bake!

This year I chose to make some white bread, apple turnovers, raspberry turnovers, lemon bars, and my famous Ooey-gooey Orange Rolls. I sure hope they help raise money for the kids! Today was a perfect day to get all this done, since tonight was “Daddy-Daughter Date Night”-a long overdue one, I might add! K sure has missed her daddy while he was training in Fort Jackson, but Bryan has done everything he possibly could to find ways to connect with her over the past couple of months. I love that about my husband…that he finds little ways to make us feel special with no regard to how sappy it may appear to his friends. Over the past few months he’s sent flowers, teddy bears, cards, notes, and dog tags to us just to remind us that he loves and misses us. Girls, if you’re looking for a man like this, I’m here to tell you hold out for a good one-they do exist…and if you’ve already got a good one, by all means don’t mess it up, hehe!

Anyway, I think I’m finally wound down enough to go to sleep but before I go, here are a few pictures of my bake sale creations, enjoy!

Lemon Bars-not cut yet
Lemon Bars

Apple Turnovers-I made 2 batches of these and 2 batches of Raspberry
Apple Turnovers

Orange Rolls-I made 2 containers of these
Orange Rolls

White Bread-I made 2 loaves of this also
White Bread

Published in: on April 12, 2008 at 12:15 am  Comments (5)  

Super Easy Peach Cobbler Recipe

As usual a request for a recipe has been made, and as usual, I don’t have one. I made it up as I went along, but I’ll try my best to help explain how I did it.

2 quarts of peaches (I used the kind in a jar with light syrup, b/c I hate canned peaches)
2 pillsbury (or off-brand) pie crusts-the ready to roll-out kind, not the frozen kind
3/4 c. sugar (guessing)
1 1/2 tbl. cinnamon (guessing)
Juice from one medium sized lemon
Cornstarch and water mixture (I’m guessing I put in 1/4 c. of cornstarch mixed with just enough water to make it the consistancy of cream)

Drain peaches in a colander with a bowl resting below it to catch the peach juices. Allow peaches to “dry out” a little on paper towels, and pour the juices into a heavy saucepan on medium heat. Add sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, mix the cornstarch and water (like you would for a gravy-see package directions) and pour mixture slowly into the pot over medium heat, stirring quickly with a whisk to incorporate. Bring mixture back to a simmer and it should’ve thickened nicely. Allow to cool while preparing the crusts. In a 9-12″ cast-iron skillet spray with cooking spray or butter it lightly, and add one pie crust, making sure to leave hangover on one side. Place other pie crust on opposite side of pan (leaving overhang as well) and smoosh together the bottoms of the crusts to make one large oblong shaped crust. Place semi-dried peaches in bottom of pie crusts, pour peach juice mixture over peaches, top with 4-6 pats of butter, fold overhanging pie crust to the top of the peach mixture to cover as well as possible, and sprinkle crust with sugar. Bake at 425 for 20-30 minutes or until crust is golden brown and peach juice is bubbling.

Serve warm with ice cream or real whipped cream.

Published in: on April 9, 2008 at 4:12 pm  Comments (1)  

Simple Indoor Picnic

So, as they often do, plans for dinner changed. Hubby was more in the mood for burgers on the bbq than for steaks on the bbq, so I created a quick and simple indoor picnic. We enjoyed our dinner on the living room floor, picnic-style. Since it looked so yummy all put together, I thought I’d share a couple pics of our dinner. We had grilled cheeseburgers, potato chips, fresh-squeezed homemade lemonade, and homemade peach cobbler!

 Simple Indoor Picnic 2

Simple Indoor Picnic

Published in: on April 8, 2008 at 8:10 pm  Leave a Comment  

Super Easy Peach Cobbler

Okay, we’re back home as I mentioned and I’m getting back into the cooking mode. Last night, neither of us were hungry, but Bryan was dying of thirst, so I made him some fresh-squeezed lemonade, and today so far I’ve made a yummy lookin’ peach cobbler, and we’re getting ready to bbq some steaks with some veggies. I took a picture before and after taking the cobbler out of the oven, but bear with me, I’m having serious issues with the new photobucket editing system, it only works half the time for me, so I’m sorry about the big pics.
Before:
Raw Peach Cobbler

After:
Baked Peach Cobbler

Doesn’t it just make you want to make a peach cobbler, too?

Published in: on April 8, 2008 at 5:15 pm  Comments (3)  

Wondering where I’ve been?

Well, after my surgery, I went out to South Carolina to visit my husband, attend a spouse seminar, his graduation, and the graduation banquet/ball, and traveled home with my hubby. So now we’re home, and it’s back to blessing my family with good cooking and my blog readers with drool-worthy pictures, hehe. Before we get back into the food pictures, though, I often receive complaints that there aren’t that many pictures of me on my blog…well, there’s a reason for that-I’m the one taking all those pictures! But this week I had an opportunity to really dress up and I thought I’d share a photo of me and hubby after the graduation ball:
Banquet Dress Detail
 

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