Recipe: Simple Weekday Dutch Baby (Baked Pancake)

dutch baby I’ve mentioned in the past that my husband is the breakfast-maker in our home, but only on Saturday mornings. He makes up a big batch of pancakes, waffles, or French toast, and we eat them throughout the week. Once we run out, the kids have toast, cereal, or oatmeal. I’m great at making dinners (and even breakfast for dinner!), but hot breakfasts just seem so complicated for a weekday morning, especially since our mornings are filled with homeschooling, therapy sessions, and doctor’s appointments, so A.M. time is at a premium.

One of our favorite breakfast restaurants serves German Pancakes (also called Dutch Babies), and after craving them while pregnant with Junior, I knew I had to find a way to make them at home. I found a recipe and tweaked it a bit to suit our tastes. It’s ridiculously easy, and Tater could literally eat an entire pan on her own. It’s perfect for busy mornings, since prep time is less than 10 minutes, and it can be on the table in less than half hour.

Baked German Pancake (Dutch Baby) adapted from Melissa d’Arabian
serves 2-3
(unless you’re my daughter, in which case it serves 1)

-3 TBS Butter
-3 Eggs
-3/4 C all-purpose flour
-3/4 C warmed milk (I use coconut milk, and put it in the microwave for 30 seconds)
-4 TBS white sugar
-1 tsp vanilla extract

-1 lemon cut into wedges for serving
-coarse sugar or powdered sugar for serving

-Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
-In a blender, add eggs, flour, milk, sugar, and vanilla and mix until well combined.
-Place butter in an oven safe 12″ pan (I use a 12″ cast iron skillet) and place in the oven for 3 minutes, or until butter is melted.
-Pour batter into the pan, and bake for about 20 minutes, or until top is slightly browned and pancake is cooked through.
-Remove pancake to a platter and slice into 6 pieces. Sprinkle coarse sugar or powdered sugar over the top and serve with lemon wedges.

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Easy Weeknight Beef Chili Recipe

EasyWeeknightChili

I love a good bowl of chili. It’s comfort food but it’s not so heavy that I can’t enjoy it on a summer evening. The Chili recipe I’ve been using for years requires 8+ hours in the crock pot, but this recipe I’m sharing with you today is done in only an hour…perfect for those last minute cravings. Plus, you can use the leftovers in a variety of meals, so it stretches your wallet a bit too!

Easy Weeknight Beef Chili
(serves 6-8)

  • 1.5 lb ground beef (I use the Costco organic ground beef which comes in packages of 1.33 lbs, and that works just fine.)
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2 (15 oz) cans tomato sauce
  • 1 C salsa (this does make a difference…use your favorite brand.)
  • 3 TBS Chili Seasoning (recipe HERE)
  • 2 (15 oz) cans beans…kidney, black, pinto, or any combination thereof
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

  • In a stock pot or large saucepan, cook the ground beef over medium heat along with the onion and bell pepper until meat is cooked through. Drain fat and return to pot.
  • Add tomato sauce, salsa, chili (or taco) seasoning and beans. Simmer for 30 minutes to an hour, and season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve with corn chips, sour cream, green onions, and cheese.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sushi-Recipe for Kids

pbj

pbj



My kids love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and would probably eat them everyday if I let them. But, I have this weird thing about food variety…as in, I can’t eat the same thing more than two days in a row (which is why I have to repurpose leftovers in order to eat them).

So, that means when Tater asked me for a PB&J for the fourth day in a row last week, I had to get creative. How does PB&J sushi sound? I even gave her some thick paper straws to use as chopsticks. She gobbled them up. Junior unrolled his and licked the jelly out, but 2 year olds are just a different species.

1. Cut the crusts off 2 pieces of bread (this will make either two thin rolls (pictured above) or one thicker roll).

 

2. Roll out the bread. Yes, that is a Play-Doh roller, but I washed it and it worked better than my big rolling pin. You’ll want the bread to pretty thin, otherwise it won’t roll well. If you want thicker rolls instead of the smaller thin rolls (pictured above), roll two pieces of bread together. 099103

 

3. Spread peanut butter and jelly in alternating stripes, like this…I tried it several ways, but the stripes worked best because you got a bit of both PB and jelly in each bite.

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For thicker rolls, use 2 slices of bread
For thinner rolls
For thinner rolls, use one slice of bread

 

4. Roll them up, and cut them like sushi!

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10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Me…

1. I played baseball as a pitcher until high school. I even got to throw out the First Pitch at a Major League Baseball game.

2. I’ve been to 9 MLB stadiums. Wrigley was iconic, but my seat was right behind a concrete support beam so I’m not entirely sure who actually won.

3. I’m left-handed.

4. If I had to live someplace other than California, it would be somewhere in the South. I love bacon and saying “y’all”. 

5. I love Jeopardy and at one point (obviously before children), didn’t miss an episode for 10 years.

6. I came in 9th place in the State Spelling Bee in middle school. “Spigot” tripped me up…the woman pronounced it “spicket” with an over emphasis on “ick”. I was one round away from advancing to Nationals.

7. I don’t play any musical instruments, unless you count the harmonica. In high school, I recorded a CD of myself playing Harmonica Hymns. I gave it to people I loved. Looking back, they probably thought I hated them.
 
8. I have a major sweet tooth, and always have at least 3 kinds of chocolate in my secret stash. (Lately it’s been dark chocolate coconut bars.)

9. I traveled quite a bit in my younger years…I managed to visit most of the “I” countries: Israel, Italy, and Ireland. Unless something really drastic happens, I will probably never make it to Iraq or Iran. Iceland is still a possibility.

10. Breakfast for dinner is always acceptable. Especially pancakes. I have a weakness for pancakes. (Try my favorite Blueberry Pancake Recipe!)

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Book Review: Honor

http://files.tyndale.com/thpdata/images--covers/500%20h/978-1-4143-7562-5.jpg 
Honor Penworthy is a well-to-do young woman who is heiress to her family’s Maryland plantation. She has made it known that she plans to free the plantation’s slaves once her grandfather passes away. As a result, her grandfather writes Honor out of his will, and she is suddenly left penniless and homeless upon his death. Honor and her maid Royale travel to Pennsylvania where Honor has a distant relative. Upon arriving to Miriam’s home, Honor meets Miriam’s grown son, Samuel Cathwell, who is a skilled glassmaker. Samuel is also deaf. Samuel communicates with his mother through sign language, and Honor is quick to catch on. Soon, they marry out of mutual benefit and convenience–Honor needs to be financially supported, and Samuel needs someone to help him communicate with the hearing world, as well as help him raise his young nephew who was left in his care after Samuel’s brother died.
Soon, the Cathwells move to Cincinnati, Ohio, where Honor joins an anti-slavery movement within the Quaker community. She becomes involved in hiding runaway slaves, and does so without telling her husband. The book focuses on slavery as well as the relationship between Honor and Samuel. Can they grow to love each other? Can trust be found?
I have to review this book from a totally different perspective. I’m the mother of a deaf child, so this book really hit home for me. I appreciated how Lyn Cote, the author of Honor, showed how deafness can impact a person’s entire world, and the world of those around him. Samuel was mistrustful of hearing people because they didn’t treat him with respect. He was treated only a little better than the slaves because of his disability.
The one thing that bugged me (and it reallllllly bugged me. I had to put the book down a few times because of it), was the premise that Honor could meet a deaf man and become fluent in sign language within a month. For one, sign language was in its infancy in 1819, so there weren’t the vast amount of known signs as there are today. Secondly, sign language is a language, and there are nuances and rules and completely different grammar rules as English. It would not be possible to learn the language enough to communicate in full conversations with her husband just a month after they met. Like any language, learning takes time and being exposed to new words. Honor wouldn’t suddenly just *know* how to “speak” with her hands. It takes a lot of time, and a LOT of practice. As in years and not months.
If that won’t bug you, it is a pretty good read, but I just couldn’t get past the sign language issues. I did like the progression and growth of the characters, however.

*Tyndale Publishers provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest and unbiased review. All opinions are my own.