What a wonderful weekend we had! Just the four of us at home. Pa and Nathan got quite a bit of wood split. Lindsay jumped right in and helped with the stacking, and even got to split her first round of wood! The maul was too heavy for her, but she managed just fine once Pa got her set up with a wedge and the mallet. She was so proud!
Saturday night I had a chance to experiment with my oven again with a combination of ingredients that had been coming to me in spurts for the last week. It was a casserole that ultimately yielded 3 out of 4 thumbs up. Lindsay wasn't thrilled with it, but she didn't hate it either. At least she finished her plate. Everyone else had seconds, and are looking forward to leftovers.The thing she didn't like about it turned out to be the thing everyone else enjoyed. I had a heck of a time trying to come up with a name for this one, but wanted to share it with you all, so here goes:
3 1/2 cups plain yogurt, drained for 4-6 hours
2 TBSP Olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4-1 lb. ground beef
1/2 tsp. salt
pepper (I did 24 grinds of the mill)
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 can sliced olives (save a few for garnish if desired)
*1 can (6 oz.?) diced mild green chilies (optional)
1 6 oz. can tomato paste = 1/2 can water
7-8 oz. egg noodles, cooked
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (plus a bit more for garnish if desired)
Preheat oven to 350º
Saute onion and garlic in olive oil 'til tender. Add ground beef, breaking up as it cooks,salt and pepper. Cook and stir til meat is barely pink. Stir in sliced mushrooms, cover and let steam a couple minutes. Stir in tomato paste, 1/2 can water, and drained yogurt. Stir well, til no red streaks remain. Add shredded cheddar, chilies and olives. Mix together with cooked and drained noodles. Transfer to a baking dish (my 2 qt. dish barely contained it all, and a bit bubbled over into the oven, so either go with a slightly larger dish, or set it on a baking sheet) At this point I added a bit more shredded cheese and reserved olives to the top just to make it purty ;) Bake for 30 - 40 minutes, or til bubbly.
* Optional. This was the part Lindsay didn't like. It gives it a bit of a tang. If you prefer you might opt to saute some green bell pepper with the onion and garlic instead.
Saturday Night At The Movies
This weeks feature event was "Ice Age" (sorry, no link. IMDB isn't cooperating with me this morning), featuring the voice of Ray Romano. This animated film was a fun adventure and a meaningful story about relationships between rather unlikely friends, that the whole family enjoyed. Plenty of chuckles, and several "aaahs" for the tender moments. I think this film would be good for all audiences, including the very young.
Sunday was another busy, yet fun day at our Boondock home. We started our day with a breakfast prepared by Lindsay. She was inspired by a cookbook big sister, Kimmi had sent her, The Pooh Cook Book. She prepared, for her first time ever, a perfectly fluffy yet moist pan of scrambled eggs. She was so proud, and is looking forward to her next experiment.
Once fueled with all that protein, we were all ready to start our day. Pa and Nathan headed out and went to work on the woodpile once again, while Lindsay and I busied ourselves with household chores. We did all manage to take some time out for reading before supper time was upon us. This evening Pa treated us to a wonderful baked chicken meal. Afterwards, I sent Nathan out to get the bucket of vanilla ice cream while Lindsay and I took our turn at the stove. This time we were experimenting with dessert. It really turned out good! More Leftover Magic with rice!
Stovetop Chocolate Rice Pudding
About 2 cups cooked Rice
2 TBSP butter or margarine
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 cup water
1 tsp. vanilla
Vanilla Ice Cream
Place cooked rice in heavy saucepan. Add milk to cover. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick (I figure it takes about 20 minutes) . Meanwhile, in small saucepan, heat butter. When it begins to melt add remaining ingredients, except vanilla. Cook and stir over medium heat until it boils. Let it boil, while stirring for 30 seconds or so. Remove from heat, and allow to cool a bit before stirring in vanilla. Once the rice is cooked to desired thickness remove from heat and stir in the chocolate mixture.
Serve warm in bowls with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.
Today, assuming the rain lets up in time, we're heading back out to the woods. We have 'til Tomorrow to finish up with this permit. Keep your fingers crossed that the wood is in a better mood this week!