Thursday, September 27, 2012

Chocolate chip cookies


These are for sure my new favorite cookie recipe.   You know I have been looking for a delicious Chocolate chip cookie recipe for a long time.  One that is crispy on the outside but soft and chewy in the middle.  So the other day when I was hanging out with some friends drinking a lovely coffee I was offered one of these cookies warm right out of the oven.

I am sure bells and whistles went off when I first bit into it.  It was the most scrumptious cookie I have had.  I immediately asked for the recipe and 2 days later my hubby came home to a batch of fresh baked cookies which we enjoyed as a family for dessert with a cold glass of milk.   Luckily for you readers I asked my friend if I could share her recipe and she said Yes!  So here is your treat for the day. Let me know if you run right to the kitchen to whip up a batch of these babies.

Chocolate chip cookie recipe

1 cup margarine
2 tsp vanilla 
1 cup of white sugar
1/2  cup brown sugar 
add 2 eggs and mix 
In seperate bowl sift together
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt 
1 tsp baking soda
add dry ingredients to wet and mix
add lots and lots of chocolate chips 

Drop by tablespoon and cook in preheated oven at 350 for about 12 minutes. When bottom is golden brown they are done. Enjoy!!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

School time

I can't believe we have been homeschooling for almost 1 month.  Things are going really great.  Eben (for the most part) is enjoying school time.  This month we are focusing on learning to write.  I love all these mazes, number and letter templates I printed off line.  We are also able to keep them because I have put them all into page protectors.  You can check out my homeschool work books here

Letter recognition mazes from Tons of Fun

Numbers and letter practice

And the number one do you entertain the toddler??  Well if she isn't doing blanket time she is strapped in the high chair sitting at the table with us either coloring or playing with these beads.  

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Apple Jelly


What a great fall we have been having!  We are having cool nights and very warm days.
Last fall while living with my in laws I learned how to make apple jelly so this year I was excited to give it a try myself.  So I took the kids last week out to their nannie and papa's house to pick these "beauties".   

After getting two bushels of apples we brought them home to start the process.  First I cut the apples in half or quarters depending on their size.   Because you boil the apples down and then strain the liquid you don't have to peel them or core them.  Just through everything into a pot and add some water.  I filled the pot up with apples and the water was about 1/2 way.   Let the apples boil down for about 2 hours.  

The longer you boil it down the more you will get a good apple pectin; which helps with the jelling process if you are not using Certo.   To strain your apples you can use a cheese cloth but what I do is use an old pillow case that I lay over a roster and hold it in place with clothes pins.  Then I spoon the apple goo onto the pillow case and let it sit so the liquid drains through the cloth.   The longer you let it sit the more juice you are going to get. 

Once the roaster is filled with juice I poured that juice into 4 L water jugs and put it into the fridge.  I wanted to do all the boiling of the apples first before I started the jelly.   When I was finished with all the apples I had almost 2 full water jugs which was 8L of apple juice!

When I was ready to start the jelly process I decided to do 5 cups of juice at a time that way it was easy to mange (since I have 3 small children) and if it didn't jelly then I could easily reboil it.

So here is the jelly method I used.  For every 1 cup of juice use a full 1/2 cup of sugar.  Bring that mixture to a boil and let it cook at a good rolling boiling for 15 minutes.  While it is boiling place a small plate in the freezer.  When the 15 minutes is up take out the plate and drop a spoon full of the jelly mixture onto the plate.  Place the plate back into the freezer for 1 minute.  When the timer beeps take the plate out and push the jelly with you figure from the edge to the center.  If the jelly wrinkles in the center then you can pour the hot boiling liquid into hot jars and seal with clean lids.  Let the jelly sit for at least 24 hours.  If it doesn't wrinkle let it boil 5 more minutes and try again.

To get hot clean jars I like to give them a wash in the dishwasher first.   When they are clean from there I place them on a cookie sheet and put them into a warm oven (~200).  When I am ready for them I simply take the cookie sheet out and use a funnel to pour the hot liquid into them. 

For clean lids and rings I place them into a mixing bowl.  Boil the kettle and pour the boiling water over all the rings and lids and leave in bowl until ready to use. 

Store your jelly in a nice cool place!  I ended up making over 14 jars of jelly and one jar is 1 L.  Eben loves apple jelly so much I think I might give him that jar as a Christmas present! 

If you are giving away jelly as a gift simply unscrew the ring carefully and place a decorative cupcake liner over top of the lid. 

 Then screw the lid back on and ta-da you have a nice decorated bottle of jelly to give away. 

What an inexpensive way to make jelly.  Its just takes some time but you can do it in steps so its more manageable.  I think from start to finish it took me 1 week. The bonus of the process; your house smells amazing!!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sight word spelling


 We just finished week 3 of homeschooling.  I can't believe how fast the time is going by.  Even though we have our "days" we are LOVING schooling at home.  Eben has been doing very good learning lots of new things.  

One way to get him spelling and recognizing sight words are with these "cookie sheet" activity sheets.  Instead of putting them onto a cookie sheet I put them up on the fridge.  Eben then looks through all the letters on the side of the fridge, chooses the ones he needs to spell the words and then fills in the sheet.   

For his spelling test (pictures are from two different sets of sight words :) I take away the paper and see if he can spell them without seeing the word.   It keeps his attention being able to do activities like this through out the day.  

Thursday, September 20, 2012

S'more Granola

We LOVE s'mores around here so when I saw this recipe on pinterest I knew it was something I wanted to try.  After looking through the recipe I decided to use the same concept but come up with my own version.  
So here it is
2 cups of rolled oats
1/2 cup Golden graham cereal
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp honey
1 egg
1tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/4 cup crushed chocolate teddy graham bears
1/4 chocolate chips
mini marshmallows

Mix all ingredients together except the chocolate chips and marshmallows.   Spread mixture onto a cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.  Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 350 oven.  Remove from oven and stir up the granola to break it apart then bake for another 15-20 minutes or until granola is crispy. 

Add chocolate chips and marshmallow and store in air tight container. 

For snack time or treat time I scoop a little out into muffin cups for the kids to eat out of. 

One really great thing about this granola is that its peanut free so you could make up a batch for the week and send it with your kids to school.   

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


It has been a great garden summer this year.  We harvested lots of beans, peas and tomatoes in our Community garden.  Now that Sept is here we are working on harvesting many many rows of potatoes.  Sept 29th will be our final harvest.  We are so blessed to have received such yummy food from our gardens. 

What would a community garden be without any fun???  This guy is so talented to be able to balance this on his nose!!!  Everyone thought it was great. 

So how was your garden this year??  What times of food did you harvest?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Meatball sub


My husband loves meat ball subs.  When we first started dating (and in university) we would eat at Subway and he would always order the meatball sub.  I would always be poking at him that he wasn't getting any veggies on his sub and that it really wasn't a healthy option (that is the Dietitian in me).  So he would be funny and always order spinach with his sub.

Fast forward 9 years and here I am in my kitchen making my husband his first meatball sub from Kate's Creative Kitchen!  Since I have never made these before I did a quick search on pinterest and came across this recipe.

homemade meatballs

1-2 pound ground beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup breadcrumbs
2 large eggs
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
splash of milk
olive oil
6 cups marinara sauce - more or less, as desired

1. In a large bowl, combine the meat, garlic, breadcrumbs, eggs, Parmesan, salt, a couple of grinds of pepper and a splash of milk. Mix together well with clean hands. Roll into 24 1 1/2-inch balls and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Place the baking sheet with the meatballs into the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to firm them up slightly.
2. To brown the meatballs, heat a couple of swirls of olive oil (about 2 tablespoons) in a heavy pot or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs, turning to brown all sides. They do not need to be cooked through.
3. Add the meatballs and marinara sauce to a large pot and stir gently. Heat over medium heat until the sauce begins to bubble. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, stirring very gently a couple of times during simmering.
4. Serve meatballs and marinara stuffed into rolls with melted mozzarella cheese

 I served these with a delicious avocado salad.  I was so surprised that the kids each ate a 1/2 of a sub.  This meal will go on our meal plan again.

Hubby did look at me during supper and said.  "These are really good babe; the only thing missing is the spinach."

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Owl birthday party


Our sweet little Lady J turned 2 at the beginning of this month.  Its so hard to believe that 2 years has come and gone so quickly.  I feel like it was just yesterday we were filled with SO much joy and excitement when the doctor announced its a girl!!!  

From the first moment we laid eyes on her we knew she would be a fire cracker.  She brings so much laughter and joy into our lives!  This year to celebrate her birthday we found these cute little owl cupcake set.  I was trying to figure out how to incorporate them into her party and with in minutes of thinking about it we decided to have a YOUR A HOOT birthday party for her. 

We kept the party low key by having family come over for desserts.   I made up these cupcakes to use the owl cup cake set, which I purchased for $2 at the dollarama, and we had a few other desserts.  For drinks I made up a big batch of homemade ice tea!   We love ice tea around here and its a good thing cause there was a lot left over since we didn't really think how many Liters this punch dispenser holds.

With canning season well under way I used some jars to drink from.  I also am totally in love with this these new jars I purchased at value village.  They look like candy jars so I took the top off of this one and used it to put straws in.

The decorations were super simple.  One beautiful pink balloon that she picked out her self at the store!

And for presents we were asking for new clothing (she loves girly things) but nannie and grampy went all out and got her a bike.   

Friday, September 14, 2012

Rhyming Game

School time is going great here in the Peterson house.  I am still learning how to manage a busy toddler and a nursing baby while teaching but I am getting the hang of it and learning that I just need to relax and enjoy learning!  

That is why I love little games like this.   Its a rhyming game.  We lay out cards all over the floor and  Eben picks up one and tries to find where its matching Rhyme is. 

Making learning fun and interactive seems to be key around here!!  

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Avocado Salad

This salad is so delicious and such a great way to use up some fresh veggies that are coming out of the garden!


Black beans
Lime juice (keeps the avocados from turning brown)
Dressing of choice
Salt and Pepper to taste

1.  Cut up Avocados, cucumber and tomato into a nice serving dish.

2.  Drain and rinse black beans and add 1/4 cup.

3.  Top with crumbled feta and drizzle the whole salad with lemon or lime juice.

~  After step 3 you are free to do as you please with this salad you can add salt and pepper to taste and its good to eat like that or you could add a favorite salad dressing you enjoy.  I have used a sun-dried and tomato dressing and it was delicious.  

Please leave a comment and tell me what you would add or take away !

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Blueberries and Yogurt

This is a very yummy snack that we LOVE around here.  Its two ingredients are you ready.  Frozen blueberries and plain yogurt.

Its that simple!!!  And the great thing about the frozen blueberries is it makes the yogurt so cold that it begins to take on the texture of ice cream.  The kids love this simple treat and I love how sugar free it is. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

No bake granola bars

This summer it was just a little bit too hot to turn the oven on to do any cooking so I was in a bit of a dilemma not having any homemade snack food around here.  I was so happy when I found this recipe for a no bake granola bar over at Two peas and their pod.  It might be a little too late for the heat but not for the school season and since we aren't a peanut free school I will be making these for snack time.

So heres the recipe

1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups quick oats (if using large just pulse in blender a few times)
1/2 cup crispy rice cereal
3/4 cup chopped pretzels
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips (or any kind of crushed chocolate you have)

1. Line an 8 x 8 inch square baking dish with parchment paper.

2. In a large sauce pan, add butter, brown sugar, honey and peanut butter. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture starts to bubble. Once bubbling, cook for 2 minutes while stirring. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

3. Stir in the oats, crispy cereal, and pretzels. Stir until well coated. Pour into the prepared pan. Press the mixture evenly into the pan. Sprinkle the mini chocolate chips over the top and gently press into the granola bars with your hands.

4. Place the bars in the refrigerator and let cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting. Cut into bars and serve.

Note: store the bars in the refrigerator. 

Here are some granola bar tips I have from my years of trying to make the prefect one.  

1.   Always use parchment paper.  You can buy it at the dollar store.

2.  If using larger oats you should put them into the food processor and pulse a few times.  This helps them stay together better.

3.  Always let them chill before you try to cut them.  The cooler they are the better they will cut.

4.  Never saw your bars with the knife.  Have a sharp one that will cut through them. 

These bars were made as a dessert for a friend who had a baby so to wrap them up I cut strips of parchment paper and wrapped it around the bars then tired it with string.  Placed on a pretty plate and ta-da a great snack for a nursing mama!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...