Meal Time

Breakfast Sausage Loaf

I am always mixing and matching in the kitchen throwing this and that together and creating some very out of the box meals. I am trying to go through my freezer meat because we will be adding a half a hog in our freezer in October. We have quite a bit of breakfast sausage in our freezer that I have been trying to think of new recipes to use them in; thus creating the Breakfast Sausage Loaf. It makes for a unique breakfast that has it all included in this package deal! You got meat for protein and of course added eggs to bind it all together which only adds to the protein. Then you have some sort of grain to add to the binding ingredient to make it loaf like I used some Ritz Crackers but you could use toast too! Then I added in some veggies in the mix. I originally made it up for a supper idea but ended up eating it for breakfast and it was quite good! My kids ate it up with me. We added some white gravy on top of ours with some toast to make a biscuits and gravy feel. I thought I would share this simple recipe with you maybe you would like to make it too!


Ingredients:

1-2 LBS Ground Sausage
1 Onion-Chopped
2-3 Sweet Peppers-Chopped (1 Bell Pepper)
1 tsp Garlic Powder
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup to 1 Cup Cracker or Bread Crumbs (add until you get a good binding)
Salt/Pepper
Cooking Spray (for spraying pan)

Directions:

  • Preheat Oven to 375 Degrees Fahrenheit
  • Pre-spray a pan with oil (9 x 13 cake pan) (baking dish)
  • In a medium sized bowl mix together the sausage, chopped onion, chopped peppers, & Garlic powder. Mix well.
  • Next add in the eggs and start adding in the bread crumbs starting with 1/2 Cup. (if you need more add more).
  • Mix together with meat mixture until very well incorporated.
  • Next pour mixture into the baking dish and form into a loaf shape.
  • Place in oven at 375 Degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Cook for 30-40 Minutes; or until the internal temperature is 165 Degrees Fahrenheit with a meat thermometer.
  • If you would like at this time pour peppered gravy over the top or serve it on the side with other breakfast sides. Enjoy!


Thanks for reading this recipe post I didn’t get a chance to take pictures as I made it however your just making a basic meatloaf but instead of ground beef or ground turkey you are using breakfast sausage instead. Also you will not add ketchup … unless that’s your thing! Here is the link to my Homemade Meatloaf Recipe if you need a picture reference that is similar, if you are unfamiliar with the meatloaf. Drop a like below and follow my blog! Also follow me on social media. Stay tuned in for new posts coming soon!

Meal Time

Made From Scratch Broth

Learning to become one with your kitchen is something that you will be thankful for even years from now. For me being able to explore & learn at a young age in our family kitchen helped me become the person I am today in my own kitchen. I essentially have become one with my kitchen. Everything has its own place & everything has a purpose. Over the years I have just learned how to cook lots of different things and some just came from inspiration & imagination. I can just see in my head what I wanted to cook/make and I did.

How to make made from scratch broth

The kind of broth will vary upon the type of ingredients that you have but the process is all the same. You will need a large stock pot to make a bunch of broth at once but you can use a smaller one as well. I make all kinds of broths and after they cool down I freeze them so I can use them in future recipes or to make flavor filled soups/stews.

Ingredients of Choice

Animal bones (chickens, cow, or pigs are what I use; but you could use deer, rabbit, turkey, or other game)
Vegetables or Vegetable Scraps
Water

As you see it doesn’t take much to make a broth, if you are making a meat based stock you can even add veggies to it or mix the flavors of other proteins together. It really comes down to what ingredients you have to work with. For me when I make a broth for my freezer or just to use right then and now I use what I have on hand. No need to go out and buy ingredients. When I am cooking & there is leftover bones or scrap vegetables I will put it all in a gallon sized bag or freezer safe container and just collect it in the freezer until I am ready to use it. The freezer keeps the ingredients from going bad until I can make a stock out them.

Directions

  1. Set your pot of choice on the counter.
  2. Add in the bones/vegetables your using.
  3. Then fill the pot up so that the ingredients are covered with water, I fill my stock pot up about 3/4’s the way full. (keep in mind as it cooks down some of the water will evaporate)
  4. Place pot on the stove top & set to medium low/medium heat. (you want it to boil on low so it doesn’t boil over)
  5. Cook everything down for at least 2 hours or longer.
  6. Once your satisfied that everything has gotten cooked long enough remove from heat and let it cool down so its not so hot to be able to drain it with out getting burned.
  7. Take a large mixing bowl & place it in your sink then place a large colander over top of the bowl. Pour the broth over the colander to separate the liquid from the solids.
  8. Empty the cooked vegetables/bones in near by trash bin or compost bin. The broth liquid is ready for use right away. If you want to freeze it instead it needs to cool down to room temperature.
  9. It needs to be cool enough to work with if you plan on freezing it. After it has cooled down you can either put it into freezer safe zip lock bags directly or put them in other containers to freeze that way. If you put it directly in bags you will then lay them out flat on a sheet pan that will fit in your freezer so they can freeze flat then you would take them off the sheet pan once frozen flat. I will freeze them this way sometimes but I have recently started freezing the broth in freezer safe containers first then putting them into my freezer safe zip lock bags afterwards. This helps when I want to remove it from the bag for use a lot easier. Some people will also use ice cube trays as a freezer safe container.

I apologize I did not get any pics of the process. The next time I do a broth which should be rather soon I will do an update post showing the steps in picture form as well as how I freeze the broth. Thanks for reading. Drop a like below.

Meal Time, Motherhood

Homemade Yogurt: Cheese Cloth Hack

In my original post for homemade yogurt in the crock pot I had mentioned the optional way of straining the yogurt with a cheese cloth. I don’t have one so I opted to leave it with the whey in it; I have since found a sort of mom hack to this that I felt was worth sharing. If you have had infants or have a baby you may have a few of the muslin swaddle blankets on hand. I was thinking of a way to strain the yogurt without having to purchase something extra as I am the kind of person who tries to find multiple uses for the things that I have on hand. I set a bowl big enough to set my colander down into so it catches on the sides you don’t have to use a colander. I wanted something to rest my yogurt in the blanket on as it drained the whey out instead of re-soaking it back up. Then I laid the muslin blanket out over the colander and poured in my yogurt. Then I gathered up the blanket so that the yogurt was hanging in a bunch and then I twisted the fabric above it as it was hanging there using my other hand to gently squeeze the whey out. (Note: if you squeeze too hard yogurt will come out the blanket) The whey will easily drain down out of the yogurt, it does take a bit of time but the final product is worth it. You should end up with a thicker yogurt at the end. When you have strained the whey out to your liking simply set down the cloth and un-bunch it in another clean bowl then carefully scrape the thickened yogurt off the blanket into the new container with a rubber spatula.

Homemade Crock-Pot Yogurt

There’s always something new to learn even when you think you are not capable of learning. Recently I have been challenging myself to learn new things; coincidentally you have a lot of time during a quarantine. One of those things, making homemade yogurt in the crockpot. I have been thinking about it for sometime reading… Continue reading Homemade Crock-Pot Yogurt

Thanks for checking out this simple mom hack/update to my original post. Drop a like and follow me on social media.

Meal Time

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Creamer

Homemade Vanilla Coffee Creamer

I have been really enjoying being able to cook & share recipes here with you guys; I try to mix it up a bit so its not always the same old meal time recipes. Here’s one that will help save some money as you may have these ingredients in your kitchen already. They just need to be put together to make something else! I have three boys two of them are always loud and the other will join them as he grows. Raising loud always on the move boys means I may not get the best sleep as there is always something then what little time I do get to myself has to be divided up or I will never get anything done, good bye nap & hello everything else that I need to do. One thing that I look forward to and that coincidentally helps with the lack of sleep is Coffee!
Some people can do straight black coffee nothing else I am not that person. I enjoy trying all kinds of different flavors of creamers. They are just so expensive and now with trying to just make it by with money being tight I have started looking at the ingredients in my kitchen a lot different than before. Throwing this & that together to make something else will save you money especially if you would have just bought it at the store knowing you have these simple ingredients on hand at your own home. You get the most out of ingredients that you have bought previously or on the cheap versus paying an extra fee for a store bought luxury item/items.
Recently I used up all of my coffee creamer that I have on hand; sure I can just have sugar as a sweetener. However I really like using coffee creamer because it really transforms my coffee into something luxurious. Don’t we all enjoy some sort of luxury at some point. Anyways I discovered a way to make my own Homemade Coffee Creamer. I chose to make vanilla as that is the kind of flavoring (extract) that I have on hand but you can make all sorts of flavors. You just need a few ingredients & a container to put it in.
(possibly a funnel for putting mixture into the container)


Ingredients

2 Cups Milk
1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
2-3 Tbsp Vanilla Extract

Directions

Add together all ingredients to a small medium sized bowl.

Whisk together until well incorporated.

Carefully pour mixture into container of choice to store it in, I am using a old coffee creamer container. I am also using a funnel to pour my mixture into the container.

Store in refrigerator for as long as the milk you used is good for.
I would recommend writing in marker on a piece of tape and sticking it on the container to remind you of the date of the milk depending on if you use up all the milk that you had.
(I am using milk that I thawed out from the freezer so the date doesn’t matter much for me. I will just taste it as I use it to make sure it hasn’t soured.)



Thanks for checking this simple easy recipe out! Check out my Meal Time page for more recipes.
Drop a like & follow me on social media below!

Meal Time

Mini Corn Dog Muffins

Finding recipes that my boys will enjoy can be tough at times; my husband and I live by the whats for dinner is what you get rule. We as a family don’t like to waste food and I as there mom will make sure we get the most out of every ingredient/meal possible. I often take one meals left overs and re-purpose them to a whole new meal for the next time. I try to mix things up with a variety of meals that everyone will enjoy to make meal time easier but at the same time I try to mix in healthy sides into the meal. For tonight’s supper I am making mini corn dog muffins the recipe and step by step instructions are below!


Ingredients

1 Pkg Hot Dogs
2 Boxes Jiffy Corn Bread Mix (or a corn bread recipe of your choice)


Directions

Note: I used the two boxes of premixed Jiffy cornbread mix but you can use just an ordinary cornbread recipe of your choice. This is more of a throw together meal versus an actual recipe but it was still very good & my boys just got so excited, especially having muffins for supper. I will also note that I made 12 muffins worth of cornbread.

Preheat your oven to the temperature your cornbread recipe calls for. The Jiffy recipe is for 400 degrees F.
Grease a regular 12 count muffin tin, thoroughly then some more. (my attempt at this resulted in not using enough grease, see in pic at bottom)
Mix up cornbread according to directions.
Pour cornbread mixture into muffin tins filling up about 3/4 full in each.
Next take your package of hot dogs and slice them up to desired size. I gave ours a chop rather than a coin slice.
Place in oven for corn bread cook time plus maybe a little more, just to get it all cooked through.
Enjoy.

I served ours up with a traditional ketchup & mustard combo.
Everyone enjoyed this fun meal; it can be served with a side or two or just eat it as is!


Thanks for reading. Drop a like below & follow me on social media!

Meal Time

Homemade Crock-Pot Yogurt

There’s always something new to learn even when you think you are not capable of learning. Recently I have been challenging myself to learn new things; coincidentally you have a lot of time during a quarantine. One of those things, making homemade yogurt in the crockpot. I have been thinking about it for sometime reading through recipes trying to find well the courage to just go for it! I like many other people am afraid of failing; it’s silly but if I failed I would have wasted and I don’t like to waste things especially food.
I went ahead and made this recipe once already because I wanted to make sure I did it right! Seeing to how I am now sharing it with you guys must have turned out great! Now there are a variety of ways to make homemade yogurt with all sorts of fancy gadgets; the fanciest gadget I have for cooking in is a crockpot. I will start off by saying this is not my recipe; I found it on pinterest and will leave the link at end of this post to credit the owner of the recipe I used. I am sure that like me some of you are skeptical about making food at home that is just so easily bought at the store; that is why I felt like a post needed to be written. Someone needed to test it out, showing that its not that hard to do! And yes it is easier to buy yogurt from the store by the larger amounts but in the end this will save money & you can make it healthier because its tailored to you.
In order to start your own yogurt you will need 1/2 Cup of store bought yogurt with live cultures, but after that as long as you keep at least a 1/2 Cup of the yogurt that you make for a starter for the next batch after and so on you won’t have to buy it at the store. Imagine one less thing to have to purchase at the store. Sounds pretty great to me! Let’s get started.


What You Need

Crockpot (the recipe calls for a half gallon of milk)
Big Blanket/Comforter or Large Beach Towel
1/2 Gallon Milk (whole milk works best)
1/2 Cup Yogurt With Live Cultures (you can use plain or flavored)

Quick Notes

After doing quite a bit of research I found that this may be the easiest recipe out there; this makes a good yogurt but it is a bit thinner than other recipes out there that require a few more steps. I found that this is an enjoyable recipe since I don’t like really thick yogurt anyways.
Something else to note is that if you use a flavored yogurt starter there may be an after taste to it. I used a container of the Cherry Starburst yogurt with live cultures for my first batch and have not noticed an after taste; I also added strawberries to it and a little sugar to sweeten it. If you want a plain yogurt I would use plain yogurt; it is up to you. (Note: I made this second batch of yogurt using a starter from my first batch where I used a yogurt that had a color to it because it was cherry so that is why my yogurt is pink in color; I did notice that the second time round the color has become less noticeable in the final product.)

Making Crockpot Yogurt

1) Add the 1/2 gallon of Milk to your crock pot; I put a crock pot liner in before hand just a preference of mine when using my crock pot.

2) Put the crock pot on low & cook the milk for 2 hours 45 minutes

3) When the time is up, turn off the crock pot and unplug it. Keep it covered with the lid.

4) Let it cool down for 3 hours Just leave it on the counter in the crock pot with the lid on it.

5) When the 3 hours are up take a small bowl and add the 1/2 cup yogurt starter & a few spoonfuls of the heated milk to it; stir together until well incorporated. (just a small amount of milk)

6) Next add the mixture back into the crock pot and mix it into the rest of the milk. Mix well. Put lid back on.

7) Now wrap the crock pot up with the blanket/comforter or large beach towel, making sure it is unplugged and the lid is on it. I set mine on the kitchen table. (make sure it won’t get knocked over or messed with) It will need to stay wrapped up for 8-12 hours, from the time you wrapped it up. (overnight works best)

8) After it has set for 8-12 hours it should be thickened. At this step you can strain out the liquid which is the whey or leave it in its your choice. I left it because I don’t have any cheese cloth to strain it through. Cheese cloth is what you would generally use for that step. If you google alternatives for cheese cloth you may find something that will work. (Here’s an updated Cheese Cloth Hack)

9) Put it into what ever airtight container you will be using.

10) Let the yogurt cool in the refrigerator for a few hours before eating.

It will keep in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.
Be sure to save 1/2 cup of this yogurt for the next batch.
After it has cooled you can enjoy it as is or add fruit & something to sweeten up a bit like honey or maple syrup. You can even freeze it for a summer treat. I am hoping to write a post about making homemade frozen yogurt so stay tuned in.

I hope you enjoyed this step by step recipe by Crystal Paine. Make it, Share it, Enjoy it!
Thanks for reading. I hope I can encourage you to try new things and share them with others. There is nothing like learning something new!

Original Recipe HERE.


I am also linking video to Jamerrill Stewarts Video on how to do this in both crock-pot or instapot. Then I am linking another video from Our Tribe of Many doing their homemade yogurt. These are just to show you some extra steps and I love watching these ladies cook they really know their stuff!

Thanks for reading; Check me out on social media help me get some followers! Drop a like below.

Meal Time

Mini Pizza Muffins

Recipe by Jenifer Smalley

These were a hit with my boys as they are a portable supper. Meaning they could easily eat it in the living area as a fun treat. They are pretty easy to make and the best part is my boys asked for more! It’s hard enough getting them to eat other suppers as they tend to make those meals drag on but not this recipe. These were gone just like that!

Ingredients

(1) Package English Muffins (6 count; that are pre-split)
(1) 24 oz can of Pasta/Pizza sauce (a smaller can will work too)
8 oz Package Shredded Cheese (any kind)
Pizza Toppings of Your Choice (I used Pepperoni, Ham, & Beef)

Directions

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2) Grease a sheet pan for the amount of English Muffins you are using.
3) Lay out muffins on the sheet pan, face up.

4) Then take the pasta sauce or pizza sauce and spread it on the muffins like so.

5) Add your toppings of choice to each one, then sprinkle cheese over the top of each.
6) Place in 400 degree oven for 10 minutes.

7) After 10 minutes remove from oven and enjoy!

The bread will get a little soggy if you use too much sauce but my kids didn’t seem to care. I had a couple and they weren’t too bad. Just giving some ideas for quick kid friendly meals. Will be posting more very soon. Thanks for reading. Drop a like & follow my social media below.

Meal Time

Chocolaty Chocolate Milk Muffins

Upon looking in my fridge I discovered about a 1/4 of a gallon of chocolate milk about to expire tomorrow according to its date. By the smell of it I would say that is pretty spot on! What to do with it, was my impending question. I will bake it into something of course.

Did you know that you can use milk that is past its date or that has spoiled to cook with? The trick is to use it before it gets chunky!

After some thought I settled on Chocolate Muffins but with a twist because I would be using chocolate milk instead of regular milk and I ended up adding some other ingredients in to make it just chocolaty enough without over sugaring them. In our house we try to use everything up the best we can so this was right down our ally.


Ingredients

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Flour
  • 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 2 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Oats
  • 1/4 to 1/2 Cup Milk Chocolate Chocolate Chips

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 Egg
  • 1 2/3 Cups Chocolate Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Melted Butter
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 Degrees Fahrenheit
Grease a 12 count muffin tin with oil.
Muffin baking cups are optional. (grease those if your using them)

  1. Combine all dry ingredients together in a medium sized bowl, except chocolate chips.

2. Then add in the vanilla & egg.
3. In a separate bowl mix the melted butter in with the chocolate milk to temper them before adding to the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.
4. Lastly add in the chocolate chips. Stir until incorporated. (Mixture should not be too thick or too loose somewhere in between.)

5. Fill the muffin tins up about 3/4 full each with mixture. (if you have extra just fill them up to top, be careful to not overfill though)

6. Bake in 400 degree oven for 15 minutes (when you poke a tooth pick in it should come out clean with no batter on it)

7. Enjoy


This recipe allows for the chocolate chips to give it a little extra sweetness through out the muffin. As a mom I don’t want breakfast to be filled with too much sugar so if you like sweet muffins (or really cupcakes…) feel free to up your sugar content a bit more before baking! They are sweet through out with out being overly sweet. My kids enjoyed them! They are the perfect breakfast or quick go to snack that won’t send you into sugar coma.


Meal Time

Homemade Meatloaf

What You Need:

1 lb Ground Meat (I use ground Beef)
1 Onion Diced
2-3 Cloves Garlic Minced
1-2 Eggs
1 1/2 Cups Oats
BBQ Sauce or Ketchup
Other Seasonings Optional
Salt/Pepper

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a medium sized bowl add your 1 lb of ground meat.
  3. Then add 2-3 cloves minced garlic & 1 diced onion. Mix well.


4. Next add in the 1 1/2 cups of oats.
5. Stir in the eggs.(I used two eggs; 1 will work just fine.)
6. Add in about 2 Tbsp of Ketchup or BBQ Sauce into the mixture.


7. Then salt & pepper or other seasonings for added flavor. Make sure everything is mixed well before next step.
8. Grease your pan. I used a 9 x 13 cake pan; but any loaf pan or sheet pan that is big enough will do.
9. Form the meatloaf mixture into a loaf on your greased pan.


10. Place in 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.
11. After 30 minutes take out the internal temperature should read 160 degrees at least.


12. Then pour about 1 cup of Ketchup or BBQ sauce over the top, you can even mix them together like I did.
13. Place back into oven for an additional 15 minutes.
14. After the 15 minutes; your meatloaf will be ready to enjoy.
Be careful though it will be very hot.

Recipe




Meal Time

Simple Fried Rice

Real quick I am going to share how simple it is to make fried rice. Forgive the lack of pictures in the following steps. It’s so simple pictures aren’t really even needed.

What you need:

  • 1-2 Cups Rice. Cooked by following the package directions. (or desired amount)
  • 1-2 Tbsp cooking oil (using a capital T usually signifies its a Tablespoon in measurement)
  • Soy Sauce (about 2 Tbs but I just add it in little by little)
  • Cooked veggies and/or meat if desired.

Steps:

  1. In a large skillet at medium heat add your cooked rice in.
  2. Then add in your cooking oil. Mix together with a spoon. It should start frying together as you are stirring occasionally checking to make sure it is not burning.
  3. Once it is getting incorporated pretty well; add in the soy sauce. I use about 1-2 Tbsp but i just add it in tasting as I go to make sure its has the right amount in it. You don’t want to add too much as soy sauce is very salty due to its sodium content.
  4. Continue mixing; at this point you can add in your cooked mix in’s. ( Eggs, Veggies, or Meat of your choice. Go crazy).
  5. Remove from heat after mixing and heating everything together. Turn your stove top off. And enjoy! Add Salt/Pepper for taste.