Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Not a recipe post

Busy little princesses we have.  Addy is full-force in her second year of Pre-K and loves it.  She's in the middle of all the pre-reading phonetics stuff that makes you sound like you're stuttering ("What letter does h-h-hat start with?").  I may never have a normal speech pattern again!

Nora is enjoying her routine as a more-or-less only child for several hours during the day.  And growing like a weed!  The stinker spent the summer wearing the clothes her big sister wore last year, and this fall is wearing the pants that big sis has just barely grown out of this summer.  I see hand-me-ups in our future.

Another recipe post

We're tried several other freezer recipes recently: Chicken and Applesauce BBQ, Creamy Chicken with Broccoli, Chicken Tacos, Honey Rosemary Chicken, and Spinach and Mushroom "Empanadas."

My initial thought on the Chicken and Applesauce BBQ was kind of "meh," but I think it had more to do with having had a mid-afternoon snack of BBQ chips than the recipe itself.  My kids wouldn't eat it, but the gown-ups did.  It was better as leftovers with some baked potato wedges.

I had my doubts about the Creamy Chicken and Broccoli.  Italian dressing packet plus cream of mushroom soup?  It sounded weird, but turned out really tasty.  When I made it again--which I did last week--I subbed Italian seasoning instead of salad dressing mix.  The texture is a little weird since this one actually cooks pretty quickly and, unless you like shredded creamy chicken and broccoli, you need to plan on it cooking in about 3-4 hours instead of 8-10.  Or maybe do it as a casserole.  I don't know--raw chicken scares me, which is why I've stuck with the shredded-in-the-crock-pot version.

Chicken tacos.  So stupid-easy.  Chicken, salsa, taco seasoning.  That's it.  I found it a little saucy and really salty.  I will probably use low-sodium (or home-made) taco seasoning instead when I make it again.

Honey Rosemary Chicken was highly rated by the person who posted it. "Be generous with the gravy; it's fabulous," she said.  I'm not sure why.  It was so gross that we had drive-through that night (I had handbell rehearsal that evening and went through a drive-through on my way home).

Spinach and Mushroom "Empanadas" was the one non-crock-pot recipe I tried in my first round.  I used jumbo crescent rolls instead of making dough (press the dough flat, add about a tablespoon of filling at the wide end, and roll up like you usually would, making sure to seal the edges).  I made 16 of them--SIXTEEN OF THEM--and still had about 1/3 or 1/2 of the filling left over.  I put the 16 rolls on parchment paper on a cookie sheet and froze them for a few hours until the were hard, then put them in individual bags so I could cook a few at a time, and stuffed all the baggies into a gallon bag.  (The extra filling went into a gallon bag in the freezer.  I cooked it with some extra cheese and some chicken broth and put it on pasta.  Really yummy.).  The kids kind of ate the stuffed rolls.  Big thumbs up from the grown-ups on this one.

That's the scoop.  The mostly good and only one really bad and ugly on my freezer meals.  I'm not convinced that evenings are less hectic, but I do feel like my grocery shopping is somewhat more efficient most weeks and it's nice to kind of coast and only have to pick up milk, bread, yogurt mid-week.