Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cupboard Door Food Storage Reference Chart

Recently I was cooking with some and someone asked how many tablespoons were in a cup.  I shouted out “sixteen.”  We got to talking and I mentioned that I have a chart  I keep taped to the inside of my cupboard door.  It has all the cooking measurement (like that there is 4 tablespoons in 1/4 cup)  and all the food storage conversions (like 2 medium eggs equals 2 tablespoons whole egg powder plus 1/4 cup water).  This way when I am cooking I don't have to look it up or figure it out.

They wanted a copy.  I thought you might too.

Here is the printable chart.  It is a Google document so remember to print from the Google document menu NOT the web browser menu. 


The thing I always have to look up is how much yeast is in one packet. (2 1/2 tsp.)  For some reason I can never remember that. 

What cooking info are you always looking up? 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Aloha Chicken Salad with Pina Colada Dressing

My mom is an amazing cook.  Recently she has been making this amazing salad.   It was inspired by a salad a  Zupas.  This salad is perfect for a holiday party. Feel free to substitute fresh lettuce from your garden, freeze dried chicken, pineapple and oranges from your pantry for a food storage salad. 

Aloha Chicken Salad with Pina Colada Dressing

3 romaine lettuce hearts, chopped
2 large cans mandarin oranges, drained
1 large can pineapple tidbits, drained
1 red onion, diced
1 1/2 cups tortilla strips
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
3-4 chicken breasts, cooked, cooled & cubed
toasted coconut, optional

Toss all of the ingredients together in a large bowl or layer on a platter.  Serve with Pina Colada Vinaigrette dressing.


1/2 cup plus 2 TBSP sugar
1/3 cup mr. & mrs. T's pina colada drink mix
1/3 cup rice or apple cider vinegar- rice will make it more mild or 
apple cider will make it stronger tasting
1/2 tsp. ginger powder
1 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cup vegetable oil

In a blender combine all ingredients except the oil.  Blend well until light & frothy.  With the blender still on, slowly add oil in a steady stream.  Keep blending until the dressing is emulsified & thickened.  

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Adoption: Amy and Jordan

A few years ago a friend of mine was in the process of adopting.  She told me that most adoptions happen because someone know someone who know someone.   She ended up adopting a baby through someone her hair dresser knew.  (Who would have guessed?)  I know Amy and Jordan and you know me and you just might know someone who might like to place a baby with this super fun couple. 

Let me tell you about Amy and Jordan. 

About 3 years ago when we bought our house we noticed an old farmhouse that was in terrible shape down the street from us.  (Does this photo look like the house is in bad condition? Because believe me it was)

We were soon excited to notice that someone was fixing up the house.  “What a HUGE undertaking” I thought.  We patiently watches the progress as this rundown house was turned into a super cute home. 

First the house was gutted then then slowing the walls came back up, flooring, roofing, siding, a new porch were all exciting improvements.   After the house was livable again Amy and Jordan moved in. The house is beautiful. 

The renovation of their house is, to me, symbolic of the couple who made the transformation take place.  Amy and Jordan, have had hard times (including 2 deployments for Jordan in Iraq) but they have worked hard and built a beautiful family with just the two of them. 

They play together.

They worship the Lord together.
 They are sometimes a little bit crazy.

They make it through hard times

And they are going to be amazing parents.
And now they are ready to take the next step in building their family, they are ready to adopt a child.

Take a  few minutes and read through their adoption profile and then keep them in mind.  

Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.  If you run across anyone who is interested in placing a baby with them, please share their profile.  

Thursday, May 24, 2012

My Freeze Dried Fruit Trick: Blueberry Gingersnap Yogurt Parfaits


I love freeze dried fruit and I love yogurt parfaits.  I don’t love crunchy fruit in my parfait.
Solution:  Make up the parfait using freeze dried fruit (don’t rehydrate) and let it sit for about 10 minutes (or longer overnight is fine).  Problem solved. 

My favorite yogurt parfait recipe:  Blueberry Gingersnap Yogurt Parfait
  • Freeze Dried Blueberries (or fresh or frozen)
  • Non-fat Greek Gods Vanilla Honey Yogurt (NO Substitutions this really is the best Greek yogurt out there)
  • Gingersnaps, crumbled
  • lemon curd (optional)
In each parfait glasses, put 1/2 cup blueberries, followed by 1/2 cup yogurt, then crumbled gingersnaps, repeat the layers until the glass is full.  Top with lemon curd (optional but delicious)  Allow to sit 10 minutes or until the blueberries are soft. Enjoy. 


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Deal Alert: Instant Milk $85.29 for a 6 gallon bucket

A 6 BUCKET of Thrive Instant Milk  with a gamma lid for just $85.29! That is 437 servings (1 cup)  28 pounds of real milk that you family will be happy to drink and for almost 1/2 the price of buying it in a #10 can!!  

Best deal on milk ever.

The size on sale is the bucket so pay attention when you are checking out.  This is an unadvertised special and subject to availability. 

If you are a Q customer. This sale item can be added to your Q.
If you have not tried Thrive Instant Milk it is totally different from non fat dry milk.  It mixes up easily, like Kool Aid, and it tastes just like skim milk. 

I must admit that I am a milk snob and I really like the THRIVE instant milk.  

What are the ingredients in Instant Milk:  
Nonfat Milk Solids, Vitamin A Palmitate, and Vitamin D3.

What are the ingredients on the gallon of milk in my fridge:
Low fat milk, Vitamin A Palmitate, and Vitamin D3.

Happy Shopping!


Banana Bread

I love banana bread and recently I have run into a lot of bananas that are a little over the hill.  (okay so I have been buying the banded bananas at the grocery store just so I can make this recipe).  This recipe is easy and super tasty.  

Tip:  If you don't have bananas just about any fruit can be substituted. 

 Banana Bread   
Makes 2 loaves
adapted from Cookie | March 2006
8 ripe bananas
½  cup melted butter or vegetable oil
2 cup sugar
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon baking soda
Chocolate chips (as many as you want!)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Mash the bananas in a bowl. Add all the remaining ingredients and mix well with a wooden spoon. Bake in two  buttered loaf pan until a toothpick stuck into the bread comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes. Slice and serve.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Strawberry Lemonade Meringue Cookies Made From Powdered Egg Whites

Strawberry Lemonade Meringues
Makes: 28 2-inch cookies

3 large egg whites (2 Tablespoons Egg White Powder, plus ¼ cup water)
1 package (3 ounces) Strawberry Jell-O
1/4 cup caster sugar (to make your own put regular granulated sugar in the blender or food processor until finely ground)
1/4 cup freeze dried strawberries
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
Zest from 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 200°F.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mat.

Grind freeze dried strawberries and sugar in a food processor until powdery. Set aside.

Place the egg white powder and water in a very clean large bowl and with an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat on medium until frothy.

While continuing to beat the eggs CAREFULLY and SLOWLY sprinkle in 1 tablespoon of the  the Jell-O, and strawberry mixture into the bowl at a time, until all of the strawberry mixture has been added.  Beat until the egg whites are stiff and shiny, about 5 minutes.   Add lemon juice by drizzling it town the side of the bowl.  Turn off mixer and fold in lemon zest until just combined.  Your meringue should now look like frosting. 

Drop meringue onto lined baking sheet by the spoon full or for a more festive look.  Scrape the meringue into a pastry bag fitted with a medium star tip and pipe the cookies onto the lined baking sheets.  Shape into a “Hershey’s kiss”. 

Bake the meringues until they are firm, about 2 hours. Turn off the oven and leave them in there overnight.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Easy Pavlova Made with Powdered Egg Whites

This is my husband’s favorite dessert.  It is an easy and relatively healthy treat.  We sometime substitute a pureed fruit sauce for the whipped cream, making it even healthier.

I wondered how the powdered egg white version would compare to using fresh egg whites so I made one of each.   In the photo below they look a little different but most of that is due to my spreading of the beaten egg whites.   The taste and texture are very similar.  My husband could not tell the difference.  
I must say using the powdered egg whites were much easier to use.  

Easy Pavlova
adapted from:

Printable Recipe

8 tsp egg white powder plus ⅓ cup water.
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 pint heavy cream, whipped and sweetened
6 kiwi, peeled and sliced or fruit of your choice--we really like peaches

1.  Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Draw a 9 inch circle on the parchment paper.
2.  In a large bowl, beat egg white powder and water until stiff but not dry. Gradually add in the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat until thick and glossy. Over beaten egg whites lose volume and deflate when folded into other ingredients.  Gently fold in vanilla extract, lemon juice and cornstarch.
3.  Spoon mixture inside the circle drawn on the parchment paper. Working from the center, spread mixture toward the outside edge, building edge slightly. This should leave a slight depression in the center.
4.  Bake for 1 hour. Cool on a wire rack.
5.  Remove the paper, and place meringue on a flat serving plate. Fill the center of the meringue with whipped cream, sweetened if desired. Top whipped cream with kiwifruit slices.