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Month: September 2016

My Favorite Treat: Soup?

My Favorite Treat: Soup?

I’ve never been a huge fan of soup… Well, until this last winter. You see, I grew up in a family where homemade soup came from a can. There really isn’t anything too special about that, right?

So when I bought the Our Best Bites Cookbook, and saw all of the amazing looking soup recipe’s, I decided to give them a second chance. Starting with their tomato soup!

It has quickly become a staple here in our household. The texture is out of this world, and it is so simple to put together. I’m not sure exactly how healthy it is exactly, but comfort food is supposed to be bad for you, right?

tomator soup with extra creaminess

Creamy Tomato Soup
{recipe found in the Our Best Bites Cookbook. If you don’t own it yet, you should!}

1 T reserved oil from sun-dried tomatoes, or olive oil
1 C chopped onion
¾ C shredded carrot

4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 Tbs dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2/3 C sliced sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (14oz) can chicken broth
3 oz reduced fat cream cheese
optional: 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (if you like heat, don’t skip this!)
– Heat your olive oil to a large heavy bottomed pan. Toss in the onion, carrot, and garlic. Saute for a few minutes, or until the onion is transparent. Add the sugar, salt, pepper, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, sun-dried tomatoes, diced tomatoes, and chicken broth. {phew

! That’s a lot of ingredients!}. Heat to a boil, then reduce the heat, and allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
– Remove from the heat. Transfer the mixture to your blender, and add the cream cheese. Remove the center piece of your blender, and cover with a paper towel. {important: don’t place your hand offer the paper towel! I learned the hard way that the soup splatters, and that it is HOT! I’m a genius, I know!} Process for a few seconds, or until the soup has reached your desired consistency.
– Spoon into bowls, and serve!

 

Here is another new thing for me. Dipping grilled cheese in your tomato soup. I must have been living under a rock, because the first time I tried this was three months ago! I’d never even heard of dipping a sandwich, but my husband swore by it, and boy am I glad that I tried it out!

However, I wanted to give our meal a creative spin. I’ve learned, as a mom, that the smaller things are the more likely my child will eat them. And that is why I made Grilled Cheese Croutons!

extra treat: cheese croutons from the grill

Grilled Cheese Croutons
{basically a grilled cheese chopped up.}
Bread
Butter
cheese singles, or your preferred type

– Heat a medium sized pan over medium heat.

– Butter one side of one slice of bread, place cheese on the other side, and top with an additional piece of buttered bread.

– Place in the heated pan, and cook on both sides until brown.

– Cut off the crust of your sandwich, and then proceed to cut small squares out of the rest. Toss in your soup and enjoy!

Petzi Cam for Dogs and Cats

Petzi Cam for Dogs and Cats

Hi there, just wanted to post something interesting.

Since a few weeks we are now using a new Pet gadget in the house. It’s the Treat Camer from Petzilla and it allows you to check up on your favorite animals from anywhere in the world with your smartphone.

Now I am not that technical so I was having some issues with setting the whole thing up. But once we got it rolling it was fantastic. I have a pretty busy life and I still want to enjoy having pets when I get home. It just makes me so happy. Leaving them alone has always been a problem with getting the neighbors to check up on them.

 

How a simple device like the Petzi Treat Camera can help your pets

Now I can log into the Petzi Treat Cam with my smartphone and see what is going on in the house. The view quality is very good and I can even distinguish a lot when it’s not that light in the house. This is especially good to ease my conscious when I am worried about them.

Then it’s possible to speak through a microphone. This feature took some getting used to as Donnie and Babe first didn’t recognise where my voice was coming from. The got very confused and starting looking around the room for me. After a few days they were no longer upset and clearly understood where to look. And that is mostly due to the best part of this device: it allows you to throw cookies at your pets.

Of course you need to load them first and you have to make sure that they actually fit in there. But once loaded you can dispense a treat at the push of a button – when miles away in your office. This automically changes how your pets look at the Petzi Treat Cam. First they treat it as some kind of allien thing, but once they receive a cookie from it, everything changes. Now it’s the most important part of the house. Next to their bed of course.

I have been having a ton of fun with this device. Instead of checking facebook or instagram I can now log into my house and see my doggies, talk a bit to them and give them a few cookies. This is a very cool piece of technology.

If you want to read more about it, check the article on Smartpettoys.org

Have a good one!

Oh Cream Puff!

Oh Cream Puff!

Sorry for the small hiatus over the last few days. Me & the little guy took a much needed trip to California to spend some time with my side of the family, AND to soak up some of that warm California sunshine!

But now I’m back and ready to roll! I’ve got so many great recipe’s to share, it’s hard to know where to start!

Today’s recipe is one that I actually made the night before we left on our adventure. My mom has been asking me to send her some treats, and I thought these would be perfect to throw in the cooler and surprise her with!

(sorry in advance for the lack of creativity with the photo’s. I forgot to take pictures, and was running out the door. Realized what was happening, so I threw a few on a plate, and ta da! Horrible photo’s!)

puffing with cream this oneCream Puffs With Pumpkin Filling
(recipe slightly adapted from THIS AllRecipe’s one)

1/2 cup butter
1 cup water
1 pinch salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 eggs

1 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus extra for dusting
3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, or to taste
1/4 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

– Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. (The parchment is important. We tried a batch without it, and the cream puffs fell apart)

– Place the butter, water, and salt in a heavy sauce pan. Bring it to a full boil. Slowly stir in the flour, and beat until the dough starts to come together. Transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat in the eggs one at a time.

– Spoon tablespoon sized portions onto your prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the puffs are fluffy and light brown. Remove from the oven, and cool completely before filling.

– For the filling: Beat the heavy cream until just before stiff peaks form. Slowly add the powdered sugar and pumpkin along with the spice. (you can adjust the amount of sugar, and pumpkin according to your taste). Use a piping bag to pipe the filling into the puffs. Slit them with a knife if needed.