The Crazy Suburban Mom: 2010-09-19

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Weekend round-up, Ginger's paw and a tough week...

1.  Ginger's Paw -  The nail on Ginger's left front driver's side dew claw took a hard right a few days ago.  If you want to take a close-up look - and think about it first 'cause it's pretty gross - it's here.  We took a ride to the vet ASAP, me babbling like a fool for her to be still and her holding her paw in a perpetual state of out and up all, Mommy what's up with this thing and what are you going to be doing about it?

As you can see...

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She's now got it firmly planted under her in the downstairs living room muffin.  And all is well with the world and dog nails again.

The vet clipped her nail and all her nails and that thing popped across the room like the Challenger...  Seems, according to the vet, she must have cracked it days ago and the last assault on it cause it to bend at that freakish angle.  She has an infection in the nail bed because it had been open for days by that time and she'd need antibiotics for two weeks on top of the meds she needs for her arthritis. 

Bad, puppy mommy - I heard that in my head.  Ginger on the other hand heard, OMG!  MORE PILL POCKETS! YAY! NOM!

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When she has to get pills she gets them in Pill Pockets and she loves those chicken flavored things...  Ginger's all about seeing the glass half full.  Or about seeing the Pill Pocket twice as  full or something like that.  Anyway she's much better!

2.   My kid - He totally cooks.  

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I just love that ...

He also had a really hard week. His phone and his computer broke.  His ceiling fan too.   He tried to put together something for me that didn't fit - The parts just didn't fit.  In any of the six languages that the instructions came in.

Oh, and he got a sty.  That kid had a tough week.





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Mmmm, Unfried fried Ice Cream and other yummy stuff....

I got some requests for the rest of the Unilever Test Kitchen recipes so I'm going to post them all.  

One thing I forgot to mention about the kitchens - When a recipe failed I always thought to myself, Oh, sure well they make them on commercial burners of course my stuff doesn't work.  My pans don't get hot enough - Or whatever.

Nope. There were a metric butt-ton of stoves and cook-tops there, gas... electric and none were commercial (except a few in one kitchen where they make the original recipes, not consumer test).   They test and retest the recipes on what you and I would be cooking the recipes on at home.

So my failures are apparently my own - Now on to the recipes.


HOT AND COLD CLASSIC KNORR SPINACH DIP  APPETIZERS

4 cups dip  Prep Time: 10 minutes     Chill Time: 2 hours   


1 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise

1 package Knorr® Vegetable recipe mix

1 container (16 oz.) sour cream

1 package (10 oz.) baby spinach, chopped, or 1 package (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

1 can (8 oz.) water chestnuts, drained and chopped (optional)

3 green onions, chopped (optional)


Everyone loves our dip! Here's how we make it:


Combine all ingredients and chill about 2 hours. Serve with your favorite dippers to your favorite people.


Hot Mini Phyllo Cups: Fill mini phyllo cups with 2 to 3 tsp. dip. Sprinkle each with shredded Parmesan cheese. Arrange on a baking sheet and bake at 375° for 10 minutes or until dip is heated through.


Cucumber Bruschetta: Thinly slice a seedless cucumber on the diagonal, then top each slice with dip and garnish with snipped chives or thinly sliced green onion.


Endive Dippers: Pipe or dollop dip onto leaves.


Cherry Tomato Bites: Hollow out cherry tomatoes, then fill with dip and garnish with dill.



TOSTADAS WITH CRABMEAT SALAD


6 servings  Prep Time: 20 minutes     Cook Time: 6 minutes   


12 ounces fresh crabmeat

1 medium avocado, peeled and chopped

1/3 cup finely chopped onion

1/3 cup finely chopped red bell pepper

2 Tbsp. chopped pickled jalapeno peppers

1/2 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Light Mayonnaise

1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

1/2 cup vegetable oil

6 (6-inch)  corn tortillas

1 cup shredded iceberg lettuce


Combine crabmeat, avocado, onion, red pepper and jalapeno pepper in small bowl. Stir in Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Light Mayonnaise, lime juice and cilantro; set aside.

Heat oil in 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat and cook tortillas, one at a time, 1 minute or until crisp, turning once; drain on paper towels. To serve, arrange tortillas on serving platter and evenly top with lettuce, then crabmeat salad.

VEGGED-OUT CHILI BOWLS
6 servings  Prep Time: 10 minutes     Cook Time: 20 minutes   

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1-1/4 lbs. ground turkey or ground beef

1 jar (1 lb. 10 oz.) Ragu® Old World Style® Pasta Sauce

2 packages (16 oz. ea.) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed

1 can (15 oz.) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

2 Tbsp. chili powder

6 (10-in.) burrito size whole wheat, spinach or tomato tortillas*


In 5-quart saucepot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and cook onion, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Stir in ground turkey and brown. Stir in Pasta Sauce, vegetables, beans and chili powder. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

Meanwhile, in 4-cup microwave-safe bowl, gently press 1 tortilla to form bowl shape. Microwave at HIGH 1-1/2 minutes. Let cool 1 minute. Gently lift out and arrange on serving plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

To serve, spoon chili into tortilla bowls. Garnish, if desired, with shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream.


*Or...serve over hot cooked rice instead of tortilla bowls.


Tip: This chili is all about the veggies so feel free to add any leftovers you have in the fridge.



PB AND J NOODLE SALAD

4 servings Prep Time: 20 minutes     Cook Time: 30 seconds   


1/2 cup Skippy® Natural Super Chunk® Peanut Butter Spread

1/3 cup Welch's® Reduced Sugar Grape Jelly

1/4 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing

8 ounces whole grain spaghetti, cooked, drained and rinsed with cold water

1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped

1 small red bell pepper, sliced

1 green onion, thinly sliced



Microwave Skippy® Natural Super Chunk® Peanut Butter Spread with Welch's® Reduced Sugar Grape Jelly in large microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 30 seconds; whisk until smooth. Stir in remaining ingredients. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

MOO SHU PORK WITH CHOW MEIN NOODLES

Photo taken by TidyMom
mein
 

4 servings  Prep Time: 10 minutes     Cook Time: 20 minutes   


1 lb. pork tenderloin, cut into thin strips

2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided

1 bag (14 oz.) coleslaw mix

1-3/4 cups water

1 package Knorr® Asian Sides™ - Classic Chow Mein


8 (6-in.) fajita size flour tortillas, warmed

1/3 cup apricot preserves*

2 Tbsp. chili sauce


Season pork, if desired, with salt and ground black pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook pork, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes or until done. Remove pork and set aside.

Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet over medium heat and cook coleslaw mix, stirring frequently, 6 minutes or until tender. Season, if desired, with salt and black pepper. Remove coleslaw mix and set aside. Add water to same skillet and bring to a boil. Stir in Knorr® Asian Sides™ - Classic Chow Mein and return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, 7 minutes or until noodles are tender. Stir in pork and coleslaw.

Combine preserves with chili sauce, then spread on warm tortillas. Top with chow mein mixture, then roll up. Serve, if desired, with soy sauce.


*SUBSTITUTION: Use duck sauce instead of preserves.


ASIAN SALMON SALAD

4 servings  Prep Time: 15 minutes     Cook Time: 12 minutes   


1 medium orange

1 lb. salmon fillet, cut into 4 strips

1/2 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing, divided

3 Tbsp. Skippy® Creamy Peanut Butter


1 tsp. finely grated fresh ginger OR 1/4 tsp. ground ginger

8 cups baby spinach leaves

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup shelled and cooked edamame


1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted


Preheat oven to 400°. From the orange, grate enough peel to measure 2 teaspoons; set aside. Peel and section orange; reserve. Arrange salmon in 8-inch glass baking dish; set aside.


Combine 1/4 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing, Skippy® Creamy Peanut Butter, orange peel and ginger in small bowl. Evenly spread dressing mixture on salmon. Bake 12 minutes or until salmon flakes with a fork.


Meanwhile, arrange spinach and onion on serving platter. Top with orange and edamame, then arrange salmon and almonds. Just before serving, drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup Dressing.

UNFRIED ICE CREAM
One bite...and you'll think this was really fried!

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Photo taken  by TidyMom

8 servings  Prep Time: 15 minutes     Cook Time: 5 minutes   

Freeze Time: 1 hour   


3 cups toasted cinnamon cereal, coarsely crushed

4 cups Breyers® All Natural Vanilla Caramel Brownie or Vanilla Ice Cream

1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping, heated

1 cup fresh blueberries and/or sliced strawberries



Preheat oven to 350°.

Arrange cereal on aluminium-foil-lined baking sheet and bake 5 minutes or until crunchy; cool completely.

Shape Breyers® All Natural Vanilla Caramel Brownie Ice Cream into 16 1/4-cup balls, then freeze 1 hour or until firm. Evenly coat Ice Cream with cereal, then freeze until ready to serve.

Arrange Ice Cream on serving plates. Drizzle with caramel ice cream topping, then sprinkle with berries. Garnish, if desired, with whipped cream.



MEXICAN SHRIMP MARINARA

Buy ready-peeled shrimp and this recipe is ready in minutes!


6 servings  Prep Time: 20 minutes     Cook Time: 10 minutes   


1 Tbsp. olive oil

1-1/2 lbs. large uncooked, shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 medium onion, chopped

1 chayote, chopped

2 jalapeno or serrano chili peppers, sliced

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped OR 1/4 tsp. garlic powder


1 jar (1 lb. 10 oz.) Ragu® Old World Style® Traditional Pasta Sauce

1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

12 oz. spaghetti, cooked and drained

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro



Heat olive oil in deep 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook shrimp 2 minutes until almost pink. Remove shrimp from skillet and set aside.

Cook onion, chayote and peppers in same skillet, stirring frequently, 8 minutes or until chayote is tender. Stir in garlic and cook 30 seconds.

Stir in Pasta Sauce and simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or until sauce is heated through. Add shrimp and simmer 2 minutes or until shrimp turn completely pink. Stir in lime juice.

Serve over hot spaghetti and garnish with cilantro.


APPLE 'N PEANUT BUTTER BREAD PUDDING


6 servings  Prep Time: 15 minutes     Cook Time: 50 minutes   


1 tsp. PLUS 1 Tbsp. Shedd's Spread Country Crock® Spread

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped

1/2 cup Skippy® Natural Creamy Peanut Butter Spread with Honey

1/2 cup raisins

5 cups cubed whole grain bread (about 5 thick slices)

1 cup fat free cholesterol free egg substitute


1 cup 1% milk

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

2 Tbsp. firmly packed brown sugar


Preheat oven to 350°. Grease 2-quart covered casserole with 1 teaspoon Shedd's Spread Country Crock® Spread; set aside.

Melt remaining 1 tablespoon Spread in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook apples, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until golden. Stir in Skippy® Natural Creamy Peanut Butter Spread with Honey and raisins until Peanut Butter is melted. Remove from heat, then stir in bread; set aside.

Whisk egg substitute, milk, cinnamon and brown sugar in large bowl; set aside.

Toss bread mixture with egg mixture. Turn into prepared casserole. Bake covered 35 minutes. Remove cover and bake an additional 5 minutes or until golden. Sprinkle, if desired, with confectioners sugar.


Try drizzling with melted preserves, chocolate and/or pure maple syrup.


PORTOBELLO PIZZA BURGERS


8 servings  Prep Time: 10 minutes     Marinate Time: 1 hour   

Cook Time: 8 minutes   


1 envelope Lipton® Recipe Secrets® Onion Soup Mix

1/2 cup olive oil

8 portobello mushrooms, gills and stems removed

8 slices mozzarella cheese

1/2 cup Ragu® Old World Style® Pasta Sauce or Ragu® Pizza Sauce - Homemade Style, heated


8 whole wheat or multi-grain buns, toasted if desired


Combine Lipton® Recipe Secrets® Onion Soup Mix with olive oil in large resealable plastic bag. Add mushrooms; turn to coat. Close bag and marinate in 1 hour.

Grill or broil mushroom, turning once, 8 minutes or until tender, adding cheese during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Arrange mushrooms on buns, then top with Pasta Sauce.



BRUSCHETTA POTATO SALAD

8 servings  Prep Time: 20 minutes     Cook Time: 15 minutes   


2 lbs. Yukon gold or all-purpose potatoes (5 to 6 medium), peeled and cut into 3/4-inch chunks

1/2 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise

1/4 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing

1/4 cup finely chopped red onion

1/4 cup shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


1 large tomato, seeded and chopped

1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced

1 cup plain or Italian seasoned croutons (optional)



Cover potatoes with water in 4-quart saucepot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain and cool slightly.

Combine remaining ingredients except croutons in large bowl. Add potatoes and toss gently. Serve chilled or at room temperature. Just before serving, garnish with croutons.



TURKEY CAESAR SANDWICH

4 serving  Prep Time: 15 minutes     Cook Time: 6 minutes   


1/4 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. Dijon mustard


1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 box (11.25 oz.) frozen sliced garlic bread, prepared according to package directions, cut into 8 slices

12 ounces sliced leftover turkey breast

4 small romaine lettuce leaves


2 medium tomatoes, sliced



Combine Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise, cheese, lemon juice, mustard and garlic in small bowl.

Spread garlic bread with 1/2 of the mayonnaise mixture. Top 4 bread slices with turkey, then spread turkey with remaining Mayonnaise mixture. Top with lettuce, tomato and remaining bread.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

The recipe I made at the Test Kitchen - Vegged-Out Chili Bowls

I love the Chili I cooked at the Unilever Test Kitchen and  plan to make again which almost never happens!  It's got tons of veggies, so many that I am sure you could leave out the turkey and not miss it at all.  For real.

We made lots of other recipes, Unfried Fried Ice Cream...  Turkey Caesar Sandwich....Moo Shu Pork... Tosdadas with Crab meat salad... I'm thinking of printing them all for you if you guys are interested?  

And (loved this)  I learned to make little 'serving' bowls out of soft tortillas - So easy.  All it takes is a microwave and a bowl so read on!

test kitchens


VEGGED-OUT CHILI BOWLS
6 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes     Cook Time: 20 minutes    

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1-1/4 lbs. ground turkey or ground beef
1 jar (1 lb. 10 oz.) Ragu® Old World Style® Pasta Sauce
2 packages (16 oz. ea.) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
1 can (15 oz.) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 Tbsp. chili powder
6 (10-in.) burrito size whole wheat, spinach or tomato tortillas*

In 5-quart sauce pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and cook onion, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Stir in ground turkey and brown. (I salt and peppered here, it was not in the recipe) Stir in Pasta Sauce, vegetables, beans and chili powder. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
Meanwhile, in 4-cup microwave-safe bowl, gently press 1 tortilla to form bowl shape. Microwave at HIGH 1-1/2 minutes. Let cool 1 minute. Gently lift out and arrange on serving plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

To serve, spoon chili into tortilla bowls. Garnish, if desired, with shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream.


*Or...serve over hot cooked rice instead of tortilla bowls.

Tip: This chili is all about the veggies so feel free to add any leftovers you have in the fridge.

veggie chile

That's a cell phone picture, sorry it's just awful but the Chili put together in the little cupped shell is so much fun I couldn't resist.

The one thing I will say about the recipe is that I doubled it and I found I had to leave out some of the veggies because omg, there were just so many.  If you want to double it you can but you might have to leave out some of the veggies OR add more Ragu Sauce. 



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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Oh no! Ginger has an ouchy!

Ginger was limping around this morning and really, she does that sometimes because she's old.  But then she layed down and was licking her paw and I was oh.  Uh-oh.  So I looked at it...

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And then looked closer, which she just hates so she moves around to pretend not to see me because if she can't see me, I'm not there.  But I leaned in and oh.  No, just no.

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But yes, her dew claw nail is out at a ninety degree angle and the next thing you know I've got her under my arm and I'm calling the vet all Hello, Hello! Can I come in?

Here is a link to the close-up and it's really, really bad.  Don't go if you think it might bother you...it bothered me....

And obviously since I'm posting the answer was, Today is surgery day and you have to wait a while so just keep her quiet.

But they don't know Ginger I guess because immobile  is pretty much her version of aerobic activity.

And since posting took up the surgery time - We're off now... Wish us luck because Ginger doesn't much like being poked and really, really hates the nail thing!


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Retro Twitter, or something like that...

  I don't know if anyone follows me on Twitter but I know a lot of people like Retro Tuesday and I have a lot of Vintage Ads that aren't quite whole post-worthy so I've decided to post a daily (or close)  ad or image on Twitter,

I'm using Twitpic and putting up the ad and I did a couple yesterday and today ... so far so good.   My Twitter name is The Suburban Mom  and I made that a link if anyone wants to follow the ad flashbacks!


One of today's was this pictures...


so some are ads, some are just Iconic images...

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wordless Wednesday, Storm over Times Square, NYC



Times Square,  Intercontinental Hotel - the view

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Retro Tuesday I need adult diapers for!

I haven't gotten anything new - no wait, make that old....no.  Oh forget it, you know what I mean....in ages okay,  except my 70's Betty Crocker Recipe File so I am beyond giddy with excitement.  I mean, if I giggle anymore - I'm going to have to run to the bathroom.  Again.

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 I love my card file and pull her out a lot to fondle her cards but technically I didn't go out and thrift her;  I found her through Freecycle.  Today, just before - Like I seriously JUST got home - I went to a thrift shop and there was a hunt involved.  And look what I found.

TA-DA!

retro canisters pyrex

Hang on, I'm palpitating here...

Not only did I find that Pyrex (Miss V, I totally thought of you and almost emailed you from the store) and those canisters but I found some bizarre and obscure cookbooks that I'm sure will have perfectly vile recipes.

vintage cookbooks

C'mon, right?  Isn't that a jewel-toned gelatinous awful dead front and center on the Cook It Cold cookbook?  And do my eyes deceive me or is that a cake on the Cooking With Condensed Soup book?  And what roadkill must be lurking in the Poultry and Game pamphlet?

Pass the Depends, I'm going in...


Want to link up for Retro Tuesday?
retrotuesay stamp
Put a link in your blog, email me and I'll put your link under this post!








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Monday, September 20, 2010

The Unilever Test Kitchen where cooking is COOKING!

My trip to New York wasn't (just) an excuse to buy new clothes and makeup; although it was a really, really good excuse to buy new clothes and makeup.

It was the 'field trip' part of being one of Unilever's  The Family Dish  Bloggers and there were a lot of activities.  All of which I had to leave my house for. This was my leave the house outfit, by the way...

This was the other travel outfit.

One of the best things we did was go to the Unilever test kitchens and omg, cook.  I knew we were going to hear about how they came up with the recipes and cook something but I really thought they meant I would be cooking in a more air quote wink wink Tracy will be cooking in the test kitchen elbow poke air quote sort of way...

Nope.

By the way, this was my going to the test kitchen and cook outfit...

Day cooking at test kitchen and visit to good housekeeping magazine

and we cooked, no air quotes.

test kitchens

I wished I had my Xanax when I found out cooking was COOKING but I left it in the room.  This is everyone and everything we made.

all

Here's a list of everyone - not in order of the picture by the way....  I just wanted to make sure to get everyone in.  Some of the ladies in the picture are the amazing gals from the test kitchens....Linda Sellers (Short Pump Preppy), Jennifer Leet (The Dirty Shirt), Beth Davis (Plus Size Mommy), Tracy Reinhardt (Crazy Suburban Mom), Liz Latham (Hoosier Homemade), Carol Cain (NYCity Mama), April Atwater (Simply the Sweet Life), Cheryl Sousan (Tidy Mom), Jennifer Schmidt (Beauty and Bedlam), Jill Berry (Musings from Me), Lisa Douglas (Crazy Adventures in Parenting), and Heather Durdil (Domestic Extraordinaire

More to come on the trip later...

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Sunday, September 19, 2010

I'm home!

It took me a day to post because I had to unpack.  Okay.  Lie. Lie. Lie.  Big Lie.  It took me a day to post because I had to nap for,  like 24 hours.  I was exhausted!  Going to New York was very exciting.

Times Square, Intercontinental Hotel View

The view from my room was exciting....

The Intercontinental New York Hotel, Times Square...

Intercontinental Hotel Times sqaure Lobby

Exciting!

And amazingly lovely.  More on that later.

The food?  Well look....

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If you are ever in New York and can stand the excitement, the Wild Striped Bass at Bar Americain is so good I'm going to have to describe it in French because English pales for me so here goes, c'est magnifique, et...le mieux ....um... et...et... est formidable.

Okay.  I'm tapped for French superlatives. Many pardons to anyone who speaks French.  I assume you know what I was trying to say even though I'm sure I said it grammatically um ...pas bien.



good

Exciting, plus wow.   That's a wall they have.  Sort of consumer clunker's over the years, behind glass. A, hmmm....wall of shame time line.  I did not tell them how many of the clunkers I own, and I'm not even kidding.

I did tell them I had NO IDEA how much research they did and would be reading Good Housekeeping from now on.

The Unilever Test Kitchens were just amazing and that has to be a whole separate post.  I can't believe I cooked there.  And near as I could tell there were no garbage disposals in case what I made needed to go down one of them.

Like happens at home. Frequently.

Maybe there were disposals around but I couldn't bring myself to ask in front of the test kitcheners and the other bloggers I went with who clearly were fine with cooking there and had no need for garbage disposals.

Those ladies were amazing! They put on their aprons and started cooking and it involved no sweating or wondering where to throw the failures or anything.  I was awed; just awed by them.

The other really exciting thing was there was a bathrobe in my hotel closet...

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and this is me an hour after check in.

Now that's exciting.

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