Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day Surprise

I am having family over for dinner and I wanted to make a special dessert. For those of you that know me, this took a while and it is extremely hard for me to choose! I decided to go with something brand new. There is always risk in serving something you have never tried before to a group of people, but they're family so I feel safe :)

Bavarian Apple Torte, I have had this recipe a while and have always wanted to try it. This seemed like a good occasion.

The Filling:
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1/4 sugar
2 eggs
3/4 tsp vanilla extract

Beat cream cheese and sugar, add eggs and vanilla, mix well

The Crust:
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1-1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Combine and press into ungreased 9 inch springform pan.
Peel and thinly slice 3 tart apples, I use Granny Smith. **You can do this step first, place sliced apples in a mixing bowl and cover with cold water, add a tablespoon of lemon juice to keep them from browning. keep refrigerated until ready to use. Drain and lightly pat dry when ready for them.
Pour the filling over the crust....
Toss the apples with 1/2 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon and spoon over filling

Bake at 350 degrees for -65 minutes or until center is set. Cool on wire rack. Store in refrigerator. Cut torte into wedges with serrated knife.
Enjoy! Hope they like it :)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Cooking and Planning

Plans for the summer are starting to come together nicely.
Memorial Day weekend we will be visiting in-laws one day and the next having my mom, brother, aunt and uncle over for dinner and games! I am looking forward to it, it's been a while since we have entertained at our house :)
We are having friends over in a couple of weeks for games and dinner. That is exciting and yet I am having the hardest time deciding what to make! The kids are looking forward to having friends over their own age to play with.
We've signed the kids up for swimming lessons and play dates have been made. Grace informed me she would like to have a tea party for some of her friends. She received her American Girl magazine and is now plotting a French-inspired tea

Hope all is well with our friends and family!

Here is yet another chicken have to try it!!!

Drizzle olive oil over chicken breast, salt and pepper and top with sliced plum tomatoes....
Top with fresh basil leaves....
wrap in bacon strips**, two slices of bacon per chicken breast in a criss cross fashion-(I only wrapped them in one) **prior to wrapping on chicken-bake 8 slices of bacon on ungreased cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes, drain......bake bacon-wrapped chicken at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until done
Top with sliced mozzarella and bake until melted
This is a heavenly sandwich waiting to on toasty bun for yumminess!
Serve with pasta salad, coleslaw or chips :-)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Summer is approaching.......

And I am not ready! There are so many things to get done before they are out, like sign up for camps and buy craft supplies. I think we need a new sprinkler and of course bubbles.

Just so many things.....and then there is next year. Dylan will be in pre-k at Grace's school, Grace will be in fourth grade, I will be the treasurer for the PTA and there is a possibility Cal is going to be the assistant coach for Grace's soccer team in the fall. Both kids will be playing soccer next season, which means 2 practices a week, 2 games on Saturdays..........whew!
Plus, Cal is thinking of going back to school for his Bachelor's degree........and you know that the summer is going to fly by.

So, my mind is having trouble resting as life swirls around us. Yesterday I tried to relax and reflect on what a wonderful family I have and how quickly I am healing. I am so grateful that I could go to her last game on Saturday! It was so fun to watch her in action. We have a great team and an excellent coach!

Yesterday I baked cookies and made dinner for the first time in over a month, can you believe it! I have soooooooo missed being in the kitchen! I received my new issue of Taste of Home magazine and couldn't believe all the wonderful chicken recipes in it. Plus, it has some great grill recipes. Cal is anxious for that!

Apple-Brined Chicken Thighs....yummy! I have never made a brine before, but
I will definitely do it again. This would be great to serve when having company. Next time, I plan to double the green beans. They were excellent!

I topped the green beans and apples with the chicken and onions that had marinated in the brine for over 2 hours.

Looks tasty, doesn't it??

Dinner is served! Cal made his creamy potatoes to compliment the meal :-)