Friday, May 24, 2013

May 24, 2013

Are you ready for Memorial Day?  The weather out here looks to be a bit chilly to hop in the pool, but there will definitely be some bike riding!  Our youngest has mastered his two-wheeler and now calls it his "awesome bike".  It is amazing to see him go, especially thinking about how far he has come in his short life!  Yay Liam!!!

Ryan was out of town for most of the week which means...we made sloppy joe's!  (Most of you may recall how much he absolutely loathes good ole sloppy joe's!)  But we did it with a twist because we used ground chicken instead of ground beef, and it was great!  We made pancakes two mornings in a row because they are easy to whip up, and the kids devour them.  I like to send them off to school with a good breakfast in their bellies though this usually means cereal or yogurt or oatmeal. Since I wasn't swimming before the day began I had a bit of extra time and knew pancakes would put a smile on the kids' faces!

We did try one new dinner recipe, a chicken dish, but it was nothing special.  Even though Ryan was out of town, Friday night we still made homemade pizza.  Each Friday I say the same thing = "I love homemade pizza night!"  It is so fun to see the kids create their own unique pizza, and everyone is happy to eat it.  Don't ask me to try Owen's (he uses Frank's, crushed red pepper and ground pepper on his), or Hannah's (she skips the cheese, skips the dough pre-bake, and puts on anything from taco meat to chicken to pepperoni, or all of those), or Liam's (he loves olives!  blech!).  So homemade pizza night is great - everyone is happy and no consensus needed!

Remember the great graham cracker experiment?  Two recipes yielded a massive amount of graham crackers!  The kids snacked on them, then I ground the rest up before they got soft.  We used them to make a graham cracker crust for a light n fruity pie, but it was a bit too hard. On Friday I used them in a s'mores cake.  The kids loved this cake, but I don't think I'd make it again,  It didn't have a great presentation, and I thought it only okay.  Ryan was out of town and didn't try it, though he isn't a sweets guy.  And you should have seen Liam - face covered in chocolate! 

Finally...I do have one new recipe for you.  I will admit the kids did not get a vote on this one.  I made homemade lemonade with hand crafted blueberry vodka!  Yes, this is a family friendly blog, and I am sure I am not the only one who at the end of the week, or certain days, likes to have a drink.  I discovered blueberry vodka when out with my sisters earlier this year - and it was amazing!  However, I don't need an entire bottle.  So, I filled a tiny wide mouth mason jar with fresh blueberries, muddled them just enough to break the skins, and then covered it with vodka and screwed on the cap.  I let it sit for two weeks.  Friday night I made lemonade (I always love a reason to use my kitchenaid citrus juicer - just ask those sames sisters of mine!), and added a shot of the blueberry vodka. Yum!  Super refreshing, and think of all those health benefits of the blueberries!

Happy cooking!

New Recipe
Homemade lemonade with blueberry vodka

Homemade Lemonade with Blueberry Vodka

* 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemonade
* 1/2 cup simple syrup
* 2-3 cups water (to your taste)
* 1 shot blueberry vodka

Add ice to glass.  Pour in one shot of blueberry vodka, fill glass with lemonade.  Stir, and enjoy!

The vodka was blue, but when diluted with the lemonade it turned a purpley-pink!  If you want to make the blueberry vodka, fill a jar (size of your choosing) halfway with blueberries, break the skins, and then cover to the top with vodka.  Let it sit a week to two weeks, and then strain out the blueberries.  When you feel it is ready, keep it in the jar and use as you see fit!  It was my first time trying to do anything like this, so I used the smallest mason jar possible and used a plastic screw top made to fit the jars.  Seems like the perfect container for this experiment!