Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What's Cooking Wednesday #10

Another week gone by...where does time fly? So for this week, I did a search on to find a recipe that incorporated pasta, ricotta cheese and tomato sauce (because these are the ingredients I have on hand!) Based on my search I modified a recipe, and here is what I plan to make for What's cooking Wednesday dinner tonight:

Penne with Tomato Sauce and Ricotta Cheese

1 pound Penne, Mostaccioli or other medium pasta shape, uncooked
1 jar of Eden Organic pasta sauce
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Chopped fresh basil or parsley for garnish

Prepare pasta according to package directions. While pasta is cooking, heat pasta sauce to boiling, reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes.

When pasta is done, drain well. Return pasta to cooking pot, add the tomato sauce and heat over low heat until sauce is simmering and the pasta is coated with sauce. Remove pot from heat and stir in ricotta and Parmesan cheeses until evenly distributed. Divide among serving plates and top with chopped fresh basil or parsley.

So I ended up baking the pasta..I like the crusty top on pasta and I wanted to see if the cheese would melt some more. It ended up okay...but not my favourite recipe. Next time I think I'll cut back on the ricotta cheese and add some shredded cheese and chicken....

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

How well do you know me....

I often get emails that ask you to answer a bunch of questions about yourself, and then forward the responses on to all your friends. Well today I decided I would actually answer one...but by posting it here, you can actually choose if you want to read it :)

So here it goes:

1.What is your occupation right now? SAHM, Norwex Sales Consultant, Accounting Services provider

2.What colour are your socks right now? Black with grey stripes

3.What are you listening to right now? An analysis of the Federal budget

4.What was the last thing that you ate? Potato chips!

5.Can you drive a stick shift? no

6.Last person you spoke to on the phone? Dawn

7.Do you like the person who sent this to you? Yes

8.How old are you today? 32

9. What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? do I have to watch any....

10.What is your favorite drink? unfortunately, Coke

11.Have you ever dyed your hair? Yes

12. Favorite food? all things pasta

13.What is the last movie you watched? Bourne Supremacy

14.Favorite day of the year? the first warm day after winter

15.How do you vent anger? you'd better ask T :)

16.What was your favorite toy as a child? Cabbage Patch Kids

17.What is your favorite season? Summer

18.Cherries or Blueberries? cherries

19.Living arrangements? family dwelling

20.When was the last time you cried? sometime in the last month, I'm sure!

21.What is on the floor of your closet? shoes, laundry, kids toys....

22.What did you do last night ? slept in the hall until N fell asleep..then did some work

23.What are you most afraid of? death

24.Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers? Cheese

25.Favorite dog breed? non-barking, non-shedding variety

26.Favorite day of the week? Saturday

27.How many provinces have you lived in? One

28.Diamonds or pearls? Diamonds

29.What is your favorite flower? Daisies

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What's Cooking Wednesday #9

So this week I'm cheating...I cooked this meal last week. We were at a birthday party tonight, so I didn't need to cook! But this was a yummy recipe, so I still wanted to participate in What's Cooking Wednesday.

I decided to try my hand at making here's my recipe based loosely on other quiche recipes I found.


1 pie shell (I bought mine from the Stone Crock, but feel free to make your own!)
1 cup grated cheese
5 eggs, separated
1/2 cup milk
ground pepper to taste
1/2 small onion, chopped finely
1/2 red pepper, chopped finely
5 mushrooms, chopped finely

Preheat oven to 350F

Sprinkle 1/2 cup cheese onto the bottom of the pie shell.

Whip egg whites until frothy. Add yolks, milk and pepper. Mix together until blended.

Pour mixture into pie shell.

In a small frying pan, heat a small amount of olive oil (a spray will work too) Saute onion, pepper and mushrooms, about 2 minutes. Add to the pie shell.

Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup cheese over the top of the pie shell.

Bake for 45 minutes (top should be nicely brown, and a toothpick inserted in centre should come out clean).

Options - add cooked sausage, chopped into small bites; add any other vegetable (ie spinach, broccoli etc)


Monday, January 19, 2009

Project 365 Week 4 (Jan9-15)

What a busy week we had! It's a busy time of year for T's work, and I've picked up some work on the side...unfortunately we both had deadlines and spent more time apart than together! But the time we did spend together was filled with fun. Here are a few photos from week #4:

The kids were in a cuddly mood, so we all piled into a chair to get our snuggle fix for the day.

I've been putting off cleaning b/c I really don't enjoy the process...but I love how I feel when it is all done. I decided that today's photo would be about this necessary evil in life. It is amazing how much faster it does go when you just clean with water (these are my Norwex's all I used to clean that day.)

We had a crazy cold snap this week...-23C without the wind chill! On the first day of the cold snap I bundled up the kids and walked M to school. This is N after that walk...his eyelashes were caked with snow! Since then my neighbour and I have been swapping school walking duty!

M got in on the Project 365 action. She got a Fisher Price digital camera for Christmas, and loves to take photos. This is one of her first shots (the original family photo was deleted by N, who loves the trash button on the camera!)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What's Cooking Wednesday #8

So I've kept up with one of my New Year's create meal plans each week. I've definitely found we've been eating better! This week's What's Cooking Wednesday's meal was adapted from one of Sandi Richard's good!

Stuffed Pasta Shells

100 g frozen chopped spinach, defrosted

1 egg

1 cup ricotta cheese

1/2 cup 1% cottage cheese

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese grated

24 large pasta shells

1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

1 680 mL can Eden Organic pasta sauce

Preheat oven to 375F

On stovetop, cook pasta according to package directions (you just want to soften the shells, not completely cooked)

While the pasta is cooking, drain spinach in a colander. Lightly squeeze out the excess water. Combine spinach, egg and cheeses together in a mixing bowl.

When pasta is ready, drain and rinse in cold water. Return to pot and gently toss with olive oil.

Stuff the spinach mixture into each shell with a small spoon. Place, stuffed side up, in a large lasagna pan. Cover shells with pasta sauce and place in preheated oven. Set timer for 30 minutes. Serve with a fresh salad. Delicious!!

Note: You could also add 1/3 cup feta cheese and one finely chopped shallot to the filling mixture. I left out the cheese b/c there was so much cheese already. And the kids refuse to eat anything onion-like, so I left this out too!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Project 365 week 3

I can't believe how fast time goes! I feel like I just posted Week 2 pictures, and now I'm doing week 3. So here are a few of my favourite photos from the week!

One of my goals for January was to clean up our office/scrapbooking area. So on this day, I tackled my pile of scrapbooking magazines. I pulled out all of the articles, ideas that I hope to use someday, and will give away the magazines for someone else to use! I was amazed at how much space I gained....but now I have to do something with all the loose paper :)

On Thursday, my wonderful mother-in-law agreed to watch N for the day while M was at school. The plan was to pick him up right after school...unfortunately the snow plow decided to show up just before I needed to head out. So while I shovelled, M played out in the snow...she was so happy! This is what winter is all about!

One of our daily routines, is that the kids get to each choose a movie to watch after lunch. N will devour his lunch as quickly as possible just so he can choose his movie. So one day I sat down to watch with him. As I looked over at N, I fell in love with him all over again. He is my little sweetheart!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Project 365 journaling thought

As usual, I had a a list of New Year's healthy, exercise, get more things done around the house etc. So every day I've made a list of things I'd like to get accomplished. Well, so far, I haven't been successful in completing my to-do lists, and I find that so frustrating which leads to nothing getting done!

So instead I've decided to make lists of what I have accomplished during the's amazing to see what I really do get accomplished! Maybe it's not what I had planned to do during the day, but at least it's something :)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

What's Cooking Wednesday #7

In the New Year, I promised myself I would attempt to do more meal planning in hopes of reducing the amount of money we spend on eating out. So this week's What's Cooking Wednesday came from Sandi Richard's "Dinner Survival" book. I made some adjustments, so here's my take on the recipe:

Not-So-Chili Pasta

1 lb ground beef

1 small onion, finely chopped

2 tsp chili powder (this makes a mild version, add more if you like spicy)

1 can pasta sauce (I like Eden Organic...very yummy!)

3 cups bow tie pasta

Cook pasta according to directions on package.

Brown beef; drain grease. Add onion to pan and cook until it is translucent. Add chili powder and pasta sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to a simmer.

When pasta is cooked, drain water. Add pasta to beef mixture and stir until it is coated.

Serve with grated parmesan cheese.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Project 365 Week 2

So I've started working on my Project 365 album, but don't have a complete layout. So instead, I'll post some of my week 2 pictures (Dec 26-Jan 1).

After the holidays, reality sets in! I think N and I folded 6 baskets of laundry today! He loves to pass me the clothes and tell me who they belong to. Thankfully I don't have to rely on his accuracy :)

M and N are having a great holiday together. M learned that she's strong enough to pick him up..and he loves going over to her and saying "up, up, up." I'm sure this fascination will end...but for now, I'm enjoying the break from carrying N around!

Happy New Year! Every month we update our calendar..M was especially excited because she got to change the year too!