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>Egg Nog

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One of my favorite things about this time of year is the fact that Egg Nog is now in stores. Till the New Year anyway. I love egg nog. I often get it and enjoy a cup for dessert in the evening. My husband thinks I am crazy cause he is not fond of egg nog! My mom always made egg nog on Christmas Eve growing up. It was really the only time of year we had it. Till I grew up and realized I could buy it from about October – December. πŸ™‚ But I took her recipe and modified it a little – okay, alot. It still has most of the same ingredients I guess…….. I just used healthier options, full fat options and didn’t use canned sweetened condensed milk!
Egg Nog
1 cup whole milk
1/4 c. butter
Warm in a saucepan till butter melts and milk is warm but not boiling. Stir often!
Combine, mixing very well, 2 eggs and 3 TB sugar
(I used organic unrefined cane sugar)
Slowly add the eggs/sugar to the warmed milk, stirring constantly till milk is very hot but not quite to a boil. Mine took about 4-5 minutes on Medium heat.
In a blender whip 1 cup of cream (Briefly – you don’t want whipped cream!)- maybe 15-30 seconds. Add in egg and milk mixture and blend. Add 1/2 tsp vanilla and 1/2 tsp nutmeg and blend.
Chill and Serve – makes 2 nice size cups
This was warm when I finished making it and of course had to try it before it cooled. It was really good warm too. In fact, if it was a cold snowy day, you might just pour into mugs and enjoy it hot. Like this view from my front door this morning! Can you see the snow falling?
Also, as it sits and cooled mine separated a little. So, if you were serving cold, you might want to just let it sit in the blender in the refrigerator and then give it another quick blend before serving. Or put in a jar and shake first. Or grab a knife from the dish drainer and stir around your cup a bit like I did!
As I was drinking it, I was also wishing I had made a little coffee. This would make a wonderful egg nog latte – mixing the coffee and egg nog together. I guess I will try that tomorrow! – Scratch that – did it already! It was yummy, of course!
Just another thought/note and question!
My original recipe didn’t cook the eggs, just blended raw. Though I am not currently pregnant, I know sometimes raw eggs are not recommended to pregnant ladies and I wasn’t sure if it was okay for children. So, I made my recipe to cook the egg mixture, kinda like a custard, so I didn’t have to wonder. But I would be curious to know what YOUR thoughts are on raw eggs and the safety of them in pregnancy as well as for kids. I hadn’t really worried about it in the store bought stuff cause they do enough pasteurizing and such I think it is okay. I don’t know if it makes a difference but I usually buy the “nicer” eggs, but not always organic or true “free-range”, unless they are marked down at the store and I hit a great price!
But, if you were okay with raw eggs, just take the above ingredients and blend in a blender, skipping the stovetop part, till throughly blended and enjoy.

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It was snowing yesterday.
I thought it was a good day for making soup.
I wanted to make my version of Campbell’s Italian Wedding Soup.
I realized I didn’t have the right pasta –
– after I thawed some chicken broth and my mini-meatballs.
So, I started making something that I wasn’t sure what it would end up being.
I started with chicken broth in the pan, added the vegetables I had around and needed to use.
It ended up really good. Good enough to share πŸ™‚
And since it was a totally random and clean out the refer type dish,
it ends up being pretty cheap too!
Vegetable Pasta Sauce
1/2 head purple cabbage, sliced/shredded
3 red peppers, sliced
2 potatoes, diced large with skins on
1 head garlic, minced
2 cups chicken broth + water enough to mostly cover vegetables.
Mix everything in saucepan and bring to a boil and let simmer. Add water if needed. I let mine simmer for about 6 hours. I ended up with about 6 cups of cooked vegetables and broth.
Put everything in the blender and blend smooth.
Return to saucepan and add:
1 TB salt
1/2 TB pepper
1 tsp oregano
1 1/2 tsp cumin
Add 1-2 cups cooked mini meatballs and about 2 cups fresh spinach (I tore mine slightly, but it mostly cooks down small so it isn’t really necessary)
Heat everything through and allow spinach to cook down a little. Serve hot over pasta or rice or your choice of whatever πŸ™‚
Easily opt to leave out the meatballs or serve on the side to have a nice vegetarian option too!
I served it with this foccacia bread recipe I found on allrecipes.com – it ended up good and it really was a quick option for that evening when you didn’t get around to making something that needed a long rise time. (Just FYI – I used 1/2 white and 1/2 wheat flour, eliminated the salt and rosemary on top and used dried basil and an Italian cheese mixture of shredded cheese on top, and cooked it my rectangle stone rather then a pan)
I really surprised myself at how tasty this was – it ended up looking like a tomato sauce, though slightly more brownish – has a little spice kick – and packed with good foods! Sorry – no pictures – my husband has the camera at the moment!
This post is part of Pennywise Platter at Nourishing Gourmet!

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>Sauce recipes

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Before I realized what this week’s “Super Food” focus was going to be I did a post last weekend on making my own Cream of Mushroom soup. And a couple weeks ago I did my version of “Classico” Pasta Sauce.
So, since I didn’t get my homemade version of Campbell’s Italian Wedding Soup made today (Cause I didn’t have the right pasta in the house and it’s snowing and I’m not going out!)
– these will have to suffice for now!
And just a note – as I made the boys afternoon snack yesterday I thought of another nice “Un-Processed Foods” idea – Homemade Popcorn instead of that processed AND microwaved stuff! I actually stopped buying the microwave popcorn awhile ago and got some nice organic corn to pop. My husband had a stovetop popper (that he has had since I have known him and we never really used cause the microwave was “easier” and I was ignorant of other facts!) – the boys and I often get it out and pop a bowl of it for snack – drizzled with real butter and salt it’s oh, so yummy and a nice healthy snack. Would have taken a picture for you, but I didn’t have the camera home, but you know what popcorn looks like!

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>Cream of Mushroom soup

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I love being able to make my own “cream” soups and broths and “those canned things that are expensive and full of junk” – this is a recipe I have adapted a little from THIS WEBSITE. It’s one of my favorite crockpot websites, I use my crockpot alot! I have mentioned my adaptions in italics.


This recipe is for a LARGE crockpot.
Don’t attempt these proportions in anything smaller than a 5qt.
–2 lbs mushrooms
–2 cups water
–2 cans (4 cups) vegetable broth
–1 qt of milk (to add later)
–juice of 1 lemon
–1/2 t salt
–1/2 t pepper
–1 T dried minced onion
(I have used fresh, depends on how much time I have at the moment!)
–2 T Italian seasoning
(I use oregano cause my husband doesn’t care for some spice in the Italian seasoning!)
The Directions.
Wash your mushrooms well and cut them into fourths. Put into your stoneware and add the spices and lemon juice. Pour in the vegetable broth and water. (I used organic mushroom broth this time, but I usually just use vegetable broth)
Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
CAREFULLY use an immersible hand blender and blend until soupy. If you don’t have an immersible hand blender, very, very carefully blend in batches in a regular blender.
(I don’t have one of THESE cool gadgets, so I just use my blender and it works fine)
Stir in an entire quart of milk. I used fat free cow’s milk. You can use any percentage you’d like; even cream.
(I used half heavy whipping bream and half organic whole milk, please oh please, don’t use fat free!)
Let cool on the counter for quite a few hours, then pour into freezer bags to store or plastic containers. I used 2 cups per bag–which is 16 fluid ounces. A can of cream-of-soup is 10 ounces.
(I didn’t let it hardly cool, cause I wanted to go to bed. I freeze this and then thaw and use as needed. Freezing doesn’t seem to affect the milk product at all, but I do always use it in a recipe not by itself, so that might make a difference)

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>Pizza

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I had a craving for pizza last night.
I was thinking I would make something wonderful for Katie’s Super Foods carnival,
but I wanted pizza.
So, I made pizza.
Then I realized how many Super Foods I had used.
It was yummy and it worked to share!
Enjoy!
Pizza
1 pizza crust
Top with a couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, spread all over and to the edges.
Sprinkle dried oregano on top
Add 6 thinly sliced organic Roma tomatoes all over
Add 1/2-3/4 cup chopped roasted red peppers
Add 1/2 of a red onion, thinly sliced
Add 1/3 cup diced artichoke hearts
Add 4 cloves minced garlic
Top with 1 – 1 1/2 cups grated cheese
Bake at 450 degrees – 20-30 minutes
Cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing

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Baked Oatmeal
(this is adapted from THIS recipe at Money-saving Mom!)

3 cups oats
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup honey (or other sweetener)
1/2 cup applesauce
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
(can substitute butter or other oils for the applesauce & coconut oil to equal about 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup yogurt
1/2 cup whole milk
1 tsp vinegar
Throughly mix all ingredients and pour into a greased 9″ square baking dish. Drizzle top with molasses if you would like! Refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes. Serve hot the way it is or top with butter, jam, maple syrup………
(I have also made this in muffin tins and that worked nicely. It also doubles well, bake in a 9×13 pan. Stores well for leftovers or morning snacks!)

and

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>just my thoughts

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“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
Colossians 3:12-17 ESV

I have to admit…….. quiet times are hard with 3 little ones. πŸ™‚ I am sure I am not the only one who could say this. Oftentimes, I open my Bible and just read something…….. a Psalm, a Proverb, a chapter from the Epistles……. then sometimes I just keep coming back to something I read last week. I have been mulling this passage above over for the last week. I guess it’s hitting home and has some stuff for me to work on cause I keep coming back to it and re-reading it! It’s pretty simple really, nothing challenging in the language – it means what it says……
Patience – it’s a challenge with small children. So often I feel like I am repeating myself ALL. DAY. LONG.
Peace – in today’s economy it’s easy to get sucked into worrying about where the rent money will come from and how many tanks of gas will that work truck use this week, but God is in control and He gives peace, He will supply all our needs.
Thankfulness – when the day is getting long it helps to just focus on the good for awhile, turn on some praise music and just let the kids play. When the baby girl gets up AGAIN. in the middle of the night. AGAIN. and AGAIN and just wants to be held. I try to not resent the lack of sleep, but rather be thankful. Be thankful we are in a warm house, comfortable rocking chair and she is healthy – so many are sitting in hospital rooms holding their sick babies, just wishing they could be home and be complaining about night wakings!

So – read thru the passage – what can you work on this week?


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