Friday, February 15, 2013

February 15, 2013

Happy Day After Valentine's Day!  I made a favorite "red" dish for the holiday - Buffalo Chicken Lasagna.  Dinner cooked itself all day and left me with only one dish to clean up when we were through - perfect!  Plus, everyone around here loves this meal!  I guess that was our main theme this week...what  can be done ahead of time to save time in the kitchen?  The one and only keeper for the week was Overnight Pancakes!  This was very easy to throw together, and how nice to come down in the morning before school, after mass, or when a bunch of hungry kids wake up from a sleepover?  The pancake batter is ready and you don't have to measure anything or get a single bowl or spoon dirty!  The work is done the night before, and when it is time for breakfast just pull the batter out of the fridge and fire up the griddle!  I actually made them twice this week, on Saturday to make on Sunday and again tonight for tomorrow.  It is a really large batch, but my kids loved them.  It was fantastic to have all the extras for a couple of days!

Continuing with this week's "make ahead" theme, tonight made a double batch of blueberry muffins and put them in the freezer to pull out as needed for mornings.  That is going to be an awesome treat on a busy morning (which seems to be every morning because of before-school activities, early Saturday indoor soccer games, and 7:45 am mass on Sunday).  Imagine rolling out of bed, grabbing a few from the freezer, popping them into the oven and then getting ready.  The smell of warm blueberry muffins should certainly entice people to get out of bed!

One last there anything you can do this weekend to make meal times a little easier and smoother for the week ahead?   If you don't physically make or prep anything, perhaps consider putting a meal plan together.  It is really nice to come up with ideas a few days ahead, and not have to decide at the last minute what's for dinner.  Give it a try!

Hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day, and cheers to a fantastic week ahead! 
Happy Cooking!

New Recipes
Overnight Pancakes

Overnight Pancake Batter

* 1 pkg active dry yeast
* 1/4 cup lukewarm water (110-115 degrees)
* 4 cups AP flour
* 2 tbsp baking powder
* 2 tsp baking soda
* 2 tsp sugar
* 1 tsp salt
* 6 eggs
* 1 qt buttermilk (4 cups)
* 1/4 cup vegetable oil

1. In a small bowl dissolve the yeast in the warm water.  Let it stand for 5 minutes.
2. In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients (including the sugar).
3. In another bowl beat the eggs, buttermilk and oil.
4. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients just until moistened.  Once combined,stir in the yeast mixture.  Cover and refrigerate the batter at least 8 hours or overnight.
5. Make the pancakes the next morning on your hot griddle!  Flip them when you begin to see bubbles around the edges.

This makes so many pancakes.  You can easily half this recipe, but why not make them all and have them in the fridge for breakfast for a few days!  Homemade pancakes with only one morning of work - sign me up!