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Hurricane Survival

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So if you live anywhere on the East coast of the US, you are most likely preparing for a wicked storm and power outages. Here are some quick tips for emergency meals that actually resemble dinner:

1. Remember that you can plug a crock pot into a generator. If you have either one of those, use them to keep soup, chili, or taco filling warm. Then, you can eat when hungry.
2. Pick up a cheap electric fondue pot during your emergency shopping. An electric fondue pot can cook anything from a can (soup, beans, rice, pasta…) ***this tip is also helpful for any college student who hates dining hall food.
3. Don’t forget about your waffle iron. Again, if you have a generator, plug in your handy-dandy waffle iron and use it to make cinnamon bun waffles. Just press the refrigerated uncooked dough spirals between the plates, and voila! You have a yummy waffle.
4. For those of you that do not have a generator… If you have a wood burning fireplace, invest in some campfire sticks and you can roast hotdogs and s’mores inside.
5. Be creative with the crackers, cheese, and lunch meat that you may lose without a refrigerator. Let your kids have fun trying new combinations or shapes. This can also be fun with some cookie cutters and bread.
6. Some of you may manually light the burners of your gas range. Check your owners manual to see if this is a safe option. If so, go with it.
7. If you have near-by neighbors, host a “use it, or lose it party” it is a great way to use up food that would otherwise go to waste. This party is best after the storm when the weather is nice, but power is still out. It is also a good way to mooch some generator power off of a nice neighbor so that you may charge your phone or flat iron your hair (Mrs. Bundra 😉

These are just a few ideas off the top of my head. Be sure to share your own tips in the comments below.

Take precaution, hunker down, and be safe, my fairy friends ❤

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Chicken Stash

Here is a quick tip to make weeknight, or time crunched meals much easier.

** Keep a stash of cooked chicken in the freezer or fridge to be easily added to any meal.

  • Season boneless, skinless chicken breasts with olive oil and garlic, then grill. These cooked breasts can be stored in the fridge for a few days. Dice them for a salad, add them to fresh sautéed vegetables, or toss with pasta and alfredo sauce. This grilled chicken can also be diced and frozen to add to soups or casseroles.
  • Make shredded chicken to freeze. If you reach the point where you have to cook some chicken before it expires, throw it in your crock pot with a few cups of chicken broth. Cook until it is tender and falling apart. Then shred the chicken and cool before freezing.
  • A great way to shred the chicken is to throw it into your stand mixer with the paddle attachment and give it a whirl. You will have perfectly shredded meat every time!
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Buffalo Chicken Soup

Buffalo Chicken Soup

The best spicy flavor

It is something to savor

With a fresh hot pretzel

Or a cold frosty beer

The new soup of the season

Is finally here!

Ingredients

  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 large carrot
  • 3 small celery stalks
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked & shredded
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 -3/4 C. of Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Sauce
  • Shredded cheddar cheese or blue cheese crumbles to sprinkle on top of each bowl
  • Salt & pepper

Directions

1. Melt 1 stick of butter in a large saucepan.

2. Use a food processor to finely chop the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic, and saute in the butter for 2 minutes.

3. Add the flour and stir constantly to make a roux.

4. Cook until the roux is a light brown color.

5. In another saucepan, combine the shredded chicken and the stock.

6. Heat until it boils.

7. Pour the boiling stock & chicken slowly into the saucepan with the roux, whisking briskly so it doesn’t lump.

8. Continue to cook over low heat and bring to a boil. The mixture will become thick.

9. In a small saucepan, gently heat the half-and-half and hot sauce.

10. Stir it into the soup gently until incorporated.

11. Add the salt and pepper, to taste.

Serving Suggestions—Top each bowl with either shredded cheddar cheese or blue cheese crumbles. It would also pair well with a fresh soft pretzel.

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Justification

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Ok…so apparently my previous post has sparked debate about what is necessary in the kitchen. Please add to the debate. What is the one gadget, tool, or appliance that you cannot live without?

For me it is a toss up. I love my hand blender 🙂 It is indispensable when making my sauces and soups.

I also love my stand mixer. I use it to mix meatloaf, make fluffy mashed potatoes, shred chicken, and bake.

Leave me a comment below. What is your essential kitchen tool?

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Impulse Buying

Impulse buys, I try to avoid them by asking the timeless question, “Is this a need, or a want?” The problem I encounter is that sometimes the answer is that it is a “must have!!!” Take for example my trip shopping this morning. I ducked out, kid free, to get a few essentials, and came across the most beautiful panini pan. It came with a steep price tag for a simple impulse buy, so I made the responsible decision not to throw it in the cart. I also heard my husbands probable reaction in my mind…”Really, Kelly? We totally needed a panini pan. How did we ever live this long without one??” ( insert as much sarcasm as humanly possible) ” Just one more thing to sell at a future garage sale…blah, blah, blah!!”

So, now that I have left the store, panini pan-less, I cannot stop thinking about it. Dare I go back and get it???

To help me make my decision, feel free to share your favorite panini ideas in the comments below. A good combination may just tip the scales!!

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Kale

 

No other dish can make the kids cringe
Like a pediatrician with a big sharp syringe
The little green balls of evil, gross flavor
Become a nice dish that the whole family will savor

​Brussels sprouts…just saying the words can make some people gag, but I have to admit that I like them. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t serve them weekly, but now and then it is a good change-up. This is a quick and easy recipe that even my pickiest kids will eat!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Ingredients:
1 lb. of fresh Brussels sprouts cleaned, dried, and sliced in half
2 cups of fresh Kale, washed, dried, and chopped into 2-3 inch pieces
2-3 Tbsp. of olive oil
2 Tbsp. of fresh parsley, chopped
Sea salt and pepper to taste.

Preparation:
1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Toss Brussels sprouts, kale, and parsley with olive oil until coated well
3. Spread out on a cookie sheet in a single layer. And sprinkle with salt and pepper,
4. Roast 20-30 minutes until the sprouts are tender and the kale is crisp.
5. Serve immediately.

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