Taking October Off

Mommy and me love Halloween the way some people love Christmas. Unfortunately, we have a party pooper who’s told us they’re going to be hanging around us 24/7 for the last half or so of October, ruining that part of this  awesome month. You guys familiar with Dementors? This person is like a real life version of a Dementor ! While we love doing this blog, under these circumstances we would rather spend the time enjoying the Halloween season as much as possible. Technically, we could blog while this party pooper is around but the blog would definitely suffer. We think our blog will reflect how crappy we will be feeling during that time. This will be our last post until November. Hope you all have a happy Halloween !

Take care everybody !

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Pumpkin Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup mashed ripe bananas
  • ¾ cup canned pumpkin
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/3 cups Bisquick baking mix
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts, toasted

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Take a 9 x 5 x 3 inches loaf pan out and line the inside of the pan with aluminum foil, spraying the bottom foil with cooking spray. Mix the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl and then pour it into the loaf pan.
  2. Stick the pan in the oven for 55 to 65 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the middle comes back out looking clean. Let the bread cool for 5 minutes before pulling it out of the pan.

Since it’s October, we decided to try a version of the One Pan Banana Bread with pumpkin puree replacing half of the usual mashed ripe bananas. This turned out to be tasty, you can taste the pumpkin and it gave the bread an orange hue. The walnuts also add a different texture to the bread.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Bisquick.

Take care everybody !

Spicy Pumpkin & Shrimp Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 medium onions, sliced (we used yellow onions)
  • 2 medium carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons margarine or butter (we used unsalted butter)
  • 1 (14 ½-ounce) can chicken broth (we used a 33% less sodium chicken broth)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
  • 1 cup milk (we used whole milk)
  • 1 (8-ounce) package frozen, peeled and deveined cooked shrimp, thawed (we used large shrimp)

Directions

  1. Take a large saucepan out and add the butter to it (the original recipe doesn’t say what heat setting to set it to but we had ours at medium-low). Once the butter’s melted, add in the onions, carrots, cilantro, ginger, garlic and allspice, putting a lid on the saucepan afterwards. Let the vegetables cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until the vegetables are tender, stirring once or twice during the cook time.
  2. Take the vegetable mixture out of the saucepan and place them in either a blender or food processor (we used a blender), pouring ½ cup of chicken broth in as well. Put a lid on and blend (or process) until the mixture looks almost completely smooth.
  3. While the vegetable mixture is still in the blender, add the pumpkin, milk, and remaining broth into the large saucepan used earlier, stirring to combine. Stir in the vegetable mixture and the shrimp as well, letting everything get heated through. Serve immediately and if you’d like, top your serving with a spoonful of yogurt, snipped chives, and some skewered shrimp (we topped ours with some sour cream and cilantro).

At first this tasted kind of bland but after adding in some kosher salt at the end, the flavors really came out and it was actually a delicious soup. The shrimp does provide a nice contrast in texture to the soup.

Recipe source unknown.

Take care everybody !

Fettuccine with Sausage and Kale

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. fettuccine
  • 1 lb. spicy Italian sausage, removed from casing
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 large bunch kale, trimmed and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup grated parmesan

Directions

  1. Get a pot of water boiling, salting the water afterwards. Add the fettuccine to the salted boiling water, cooking until the pasta’s al dente. Drain the water, leaving the fettuccine in a container for now. While the pasta’s cooking, take a large skillet out and set the heat to medium-low. Once the skillet’s hot, add the sausage in and cook until browned, roughly 7 minutes (we made sure the sausage was fully cooked before moving on). Pour ½ cup of water and the cream into the skillet, letting it simmer for 7 minutes or until the mixture has reduced by half. Put the kale in the skillet, tossing it around long enough for the kale to get wilted. Take the skillet off the heat and add the cooked fettuccine to it, tossing everything to combine. Sprinkle with parmesan and enjoy !

This was really tasty. It’s a nice dish for fall that fills you up.

We got this recipe from Rachael Ray.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Rachael Ray.

Take care everybody !

Garlic Chicken Stir-Fry

Ingredients

  • 12 oz. skinless, boneless chicken breast halves*, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 Tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar or white wine vinegar (we used rice vinegar)
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 10 green onions, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup thinly sliced fresh mushrooms (we sliced 8 oz. of baby bella mushrooms)
  • 12 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ½ cup sliced water chestnuts
  • 2 cups hot cooked rice

Directions

  1. In a small bowl** stir together the water, soy sauce, and vinegar to create your marinade. Take a resealable bag out and add the chicken to it, followed by the marinade. Seal the bag up and stick it in the refrigerator, allowing the chicken to marinate for 30 minutes. After those 30 minutes pass, drain the chicken, keeping the marinade. Combine the marinade with the cornstarch, making sure that the cornstarch is fully combined.
  2. Take a wok or large skillet (we used a skillet) out and pour the oil in, setting the heat to medium-high. Once the oil’s hot, toss in the green onions, mushrooms, and garlic, stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes or until tender. Take the vegetables out of the skillet, leaving them off to the side for now.
  3. If you think it needs it, pour some more oil into the skillet. Once the oil’s hot again, add the chicken to the skillet, stirring constantly for 3 to 4 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. Take the chicken out of the skillet and add it to the vegetables. Pour the marinade mixture into the skillet, stirring continuously until it’s thickened and is bubbly as well. Add the vegetables and chicken back to the skillet, adding in the water chestnuts as well. Let the dish cook just long enough for everything to be heated through, stirring during that tie. Serve this over rice and enjoy !

*Since we had to really stretch our food budget this month, we used a pound of chicken tenders that we had in the freezer instead of buying the chicken breast halves.

**We actually added the marinade ingredients to the bag first and just shook up the bag long enough for the ingredients to combine (helped save us from dirtying up an extra dish).

Serves 4.

This is a good dish but we like having a spicy component in our food so later on we added some crushed red pepper flakes to the dish and liked it even more. We also sprinkled some kosher salt into the dish to help bring out the flavors more.

Recipe source unknown.

Take care everybody !