August: Potlucks!

August Theme: Potlucks. What do you take with you?

Friday, May 28, 2010


I don't think that I had ever tried kale before this, but I read about how nutritious it is and so I wanted to try it. Collin and I both liked it better than cooked spinach. It reduces a lot as it cooks, so don't worry that it seems like a lot. I think this was from

1 large bunch kale, washed, dried, and shredded (make sure to fold the leaves in half and rip out the tough stems)
3 Tbl olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c bread crumbs

Heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook until soft, add the kale and cook until it gets a little wilty. Mix in the breadcrumbs. Serve over rice or as a side dish.

Chocolate Cherry Cake

Here is a fun new one that I tried. I thought it really improved the cake mix and made it yummier and fancier. From the Lion House Bakery book.

1 chocolate cake mix (I have also tried it with yellow and it was yummy)
1 can cherry pie filling
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9x13. Combine ingredients with a large spoon (a mixer will break up the cherries). Spread batter into pan and bake 30-40 minutes.

1 c sugar
1/3 c milk
6 T butter
1-2 cups chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla

While cake is baking, combine sugar, butter, milk in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add chips and vanilla. Stir with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over warm cake and spread evenly.

Food Storage Helps

Tracking our food storage inventory has seemed, at times, to be an unsurmountable task. I have tried several methods which were difficult to update without making an entirely new spreadsheet. Now that my school schedule is not quite as busy time wise, I have decided to do some searching for various inventory suggestions. While searching this afternoon I found these four websites which when combined, offer a plethora of useful information:

If you are interested in the whole enchilada (storage methods, amounts to store, inventory suggestions, and menu planning) this has a lot to offer. It is a 124 page booklet published by Utah State University's Extension program.

This website offers inventory suggestions, a small collection of recipes, 72-hour kit suggestions, and spending plans.

For those of you that would like to plan everything this website offers an excellent step-by-step tutorial of how to organize a "complete grocery and food storage planner." You could definetly spend a few hours browsing through all the information available on this site.

I really liked the 3-month and long term food storage spreadsheets available on this website. They offer a tutorial to help clarify how to impute your information into the spreasheet. I have found that there are a few portions I will be tweaking a bit, but overall, this is what I have been looking for.

I found another website that offered an excellent collection of recipes. I saved the cookbook, but forgot to write down the web address. I will post the link when I find it again.

Happy reading!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Creamy Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

I have been looking for a good chicken enchilada recipe that didn't use cream of chicken soup and I think I have found a great one! Chris really enjoyed it and thought that I had used lots of cream of chicken soup because it was so creamy. This recipe comes from my favorite recipe website.
Almost (not quite) everything I try from her postings always turns out great! I use at least 1 or 2 recipes from this website every week.

chicken enchiladas

Creamy Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

*Serves 4-6

3 cups cooked, chopped chicken
2 (4 oz.) cans of green chiles, lightly drained
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, cubed
1 can white or black beans, rinsed and drained (you can really use any type of bean you prefer here)

2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped onion (about 1/2 medium onion)
2 tablespoons flour
1/3 cup chicken broth
¼ cup milk
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 can (7 ounce) green chile enchilada sauce
½ cup sour cream

8 ounces (about 2 cups) Monterey jack cheese, shredded
8 medium (soft taco size) flour tortillas
Handful of chopped fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine the softened cream cheese and green chiles. Mix well. Add the chicken and black beans. Mix to combine. Set aside.

In a large nonstick skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens and starts to turn translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the onions and stir well. Cook for 1 minute, stirring. Slowly whisk in the chicken broth and milk. As you whisk and the mixture cooks, the flour will get less lumpy around the onions and the mixture will become smooth. Cook over medium heat until the mixture is bubbling and has thickened, about 4-5 minutes. Add salt and pepper. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the enchilada sauce and sour cream.

Lightly grease a 9X13-inch baking dish. Spread about 1/4 cup of the sauce on the bottom of the dish. Fill each tortilla with about ½ cup of the chicken/cream cheese filling. Top with a small handful of shredded cheese, a couple tablespoonfuls for each enchilada. Save at least 1/2 cup cheese for the top of the enchiladas. Roll the tortillas up and place seam side down in the prepared baking dish. Continue filling enchiladas until the dish is full (I can easily fit 8 enchiladas in one pan).

Pour the white sauce over the top of the enchiladas. Top with remaining cheese. Bake for 20-30 minutes until the enchiladas are bubbling, hot and lightly browned. Sprinkle fresh cilantro over the top and serve.

Recipe Source: My Kitchen Cafe (

Thursday, May 20, 2010

May and June

Since we're more than half way through May, I'm thinking we'll combine it with June.  This theme, should you choose to participate, is a New Recipe Challenge.  Find a new recipe that sounds fun.  It can be from a website, a cookbook, a friend . . . and try it out.  Post it or link to it and tell us what you thought.  Heavenly?  Good?  Bad?  So bad that it made even the least picky eaters go running away screaming?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

My New Life

This brings me to tears every time I watch. Stephanie's faith is amazing. It's true what Elder Holland says at the end.. our trials do make us stronger.

My New Life

(and I am so buying Mindy's CD when it comes out!)