Friday, November 19

au revoir mes amis

today we are wishing the pruitts [thomas & sallie] farewell as they take the next step in their lives and move to richmond, virginia. their journey begins with thanksgiving and once they depart for that will not be coming back with the exception of fun vacations & weekend getaways.  we are so sad as they are two of our best friends and we will really be missing them bunches. 
thomas & joe at our wedding
so to go out in style, we are hosting a little bon voyage party at our house tonight!  I have let go of some control (ha) and sara, whitney, and nicole are brining over some appetizers and desserts to share. for dinner though we are having a recently bonnie inspired shepherd's pie! 

tried to think of something that was easy enough to make so that all i had to do was pop it in the oven when it was time and not miss out on the bonding! i'll put in parenthesis what ideally i would want to use too since this is for boys and they don't appreciate me cutting out the "good stuff" normally haha
joe & pat's birthday...which reminds me, we still have a door to fix!
shepherd's pie

what you need...
1-1/2 pounds ground beef (ideally i would like to use extra lean ground turkey)
1 onion chopped
2 cups chopped veggies (i buy frozen of these...mixed veggies & yes i do pick out the lima beans)
1-1/2 pounds potatoes (russet potatoes please!)
1 stick of butter (you can use light butter here)
1/2 cup beef broth (99% fat free and low sodium kind is what we use regardless)
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
parm cheese (optional)

what to do...
-clean (scrub well), peel, and quarter potatoes and then boil in salted water until soft (depending on how many in the pot...about 20 min)
-precook the veggies in the microwave or on the stove according to the freezer bag for about 1/2 of their time to give them a boost so you aren't over doing the onions
-saute onions over 1/2 a stick of butter and then add veggies--cook for about 3-5 minutes
-add ground beef (raw) and saute until you dont see any more pink--drain the grease out of the pan well
-add salt/pepper if you like that sort of thing, the worcestershire, and 1/2 cup of the beef broth and cook for 10 minutes uncovered (if the broth dries out, add a little want it to be moist)
-mash potatoes and season according to taste with butter and milk (gradually adding)
-put beef/onion/veggie mix at the bottom of the dish and then cover with mashed potatoes (lumpy is better so that it can brown)
-sprinkle if you like with Parmesan cheese lightly
-coke for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees. you may have to push broil to get the tops brown if you like it that way for about 3 min

Thursday, November 18

grazing day at kha

its grazing day at joe's office today and i'm not sure if he really thinks my cooking is that good or if its just more convienent than him doing it himself but either way we had an "urgent" need for him to bring a breakfast item into work.

i immediately thought of my favorite thing for breakfast (greer stop reading this now!) breakfast casserole! aside from the 8 eggs and 2 pounds of sausage i am convinced that it isn't "that bad" for you! its super easy to make and i'm probably even more excited because i am using one of my favorite wedding presents for the first time! if you don't have one of these [travel corningware dish] you need to get one! it is great for this so that i can pop it in the oven and joe can take it hot to work without worrying about managing a hot dish while driving!

kate, bomar, and linds
this is a reciepe from linds and is in our besties cookbook too if you have that no need to write this one down...its pretty sad i could make this and chocolate chip pound cake you go!

breakfast casserole

what you need...
2 lbs. sausage, mild-hot cooked  (i use one mild and one hot...both i get 40% reduced fat)
6 - 7 slices of bread w/ butter, cubed and no crust (using wheat bread is just as good as white...yum!)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (now that 2% costs the same as full fat cheese...there are no excuses as to why you are using full fat cheese!)
7 - 8 eggs  ( use the 2% cheese and throw in the extra egg)
2½ cups milk (skim works)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp dry mustard

what to do...
this reciepe isnt rocket science. beat together eggs, milk, salt, and dry mustard. grease pan, layer bread, sausage, cheese. pour beaten mixture over dish. chill 8 hours (overnight..this part is want the bread to have egg really soaked in there).  when its time...cook 40-45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Wednesday, November 17

thank you for having me

my family thinks i'm crazy but i love to bring a "thank you for having me" sercie everywhere i go...even when its home for a weekend or to the river...a fun bottle of wine, little gift, or food item rides in the back seat no matter where we are going. 

i told ruth [mother in law] to give me something to bring and she mentioned a "guertin tradition"...since the only thing i really love at thanksgiving is embarrassing to even say [ocean spray cranberry sauce from a can] i have decided that showing up a canned good just isn't going to cut it for the first holiday with the in-laws.  after much deliberation i think i have found out one of the things that i am bringing to the davis family thanksgiving in highlands! ive been trying to find something that i think everyone would like and if you don't like this you are weird.

double chocolate cheesecake

what you need
18 oreos crushed
2 tbsp butter (melted)
4 packages of cream cheese softened (8 oz)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 tsp vanilla
8 oz semisweet chocolate melted and cooled slightly
4 eggs

what to do
heat oven to 325 degrees.  mix cookie crumbs and butter. press into 9" spring form pan. bake 10 min. 

beat cream cheese, sugar, flour, vanilla with mixer until well blended.  add melted chocolate & mix.  add eggs one at a time while mixing on low speed until each is just blended.  pour over crust.  bake 55 min to 1 hour until center is almost set.  run knife around rim of pan to loosen cake.  cool before removing rim.  refrigerate 4 hours

and PS, yes I may be cheating and using a premade pie crust--thank you keebler!

Tuesday, November 16

tweet this

twitter may be a recent phenomenon but nonetheless its a great way to get your high level dose of what is going on in the world. whether its for work, pleasure, or a healthy combination of the two (careful though, personal tweets on work profile are a corporate america no-no).

for those who don't tweet, do like i did at the beginning...just log on and start following people but before people will want to follow you, you better be saying something more interesting than "i'm bored" all day long.  a real must is an iPhone or something else that has a twitter app and does not involve being at the computer all day...for those of you who "don't get it" thats probably why...get tweetdeck on your iPhone and follow my faves below...

twitter name: todayshow
what it is: ...the today show! haha enough said...a pretty unbiased news source and a good mix of both hot topics from a political/news perspective with a hint of celebrity/pop culture news. when its time for you to leave for work and you can't stand missing the 8:30 headliner, catch it on twitter

twitter name: harvardbiz
what it is: harvard business review...great work related articles that are short (thankfully) and up to date in terms of what is going on in the world--you will get nothing less than what you would expect from harvard

twitter name: peoplemag
what it is: hmmm scan your people magazine in the grocery store check out line, then follow them on twitter...all the latest and greats people magazine worthy celeb gossip and news

twitter name: real_simple
what it is: your top recipes, home organizing ideas (you know i love that part), 15 minute work out ideas, and other great things worthy of your time to read. if you love this magazine their tweeting is just as good!

on top of all the good national twitter people/companies/brands to follow some of the best tweets i enjoy following are friends...if nothing better than to catch a glimpse into what's new in their lives...the greatest feeling in the world is to see someone on the other side of the country once in a blue moon (@jillkobe) and feel like you haven't missed a beat!  ps...i cannot believe you've been married a day short of 4 months! 

Monday, November 15

for the cook that has it all

what else could one possible ask for other than a kitchen aid stand mixer and a million attachments? our green apple kitchen aid is my lifesaver and sits on our kitchen counter for immediate access.  aside from that and all its attachments, our hand mixer, food processor, and more i still have recently found i am in need of two things...

1--a pastry blender...this one is normal and i feel like i have seen my mom use it enough that i should own one but never really thought i ever would need it...boy oh boy smashing butter with a fork was not the best idea when it came to my strawberry shortcakes! on the list for the next trip to bed bath and beyond...a pastry blender!

2--i actually for some reason really don't like the 2nd thing that i immersion blender.  something about these things always weirds me out and since there is never going to be allowed any metal on metal contact/utensils in our amazing calphalon pans, i'm still debating whether or not this is a true need but it is definitely something on my radar.  for the girl that keeps paper towels in between all of her pots and pans in the cabinets so they won't scratch, its hard for me to imagine sticking something with metal edges directly into one of them. 

Sunday, November 14

one year ago...

one year ago on top of rabun bald joe and i got engaged & were able to spend an amazing weekend in highlands with our parents!

so amazing to have had such great friends to celebrate with and even more amazing that i am getting to share in everyone's celebrations as pig, laney, gabby, and monica's weddings are some of the many right around the corner...

oh how time flies...savoring being a 20-something...