Monday, July 29, 2013

Banana Muffins

I'm a little behind on the blog again. I had family visit all last week so I focused on visiting instead of blogging. My little monkey sure had fun playing with her cousins! She was pretty upset after they left and the house fell quiet.

Since I haven't posted anything lately I thought I would just share a quick recipe. This is my go to recipe for banana muffins. You can find it in the Company's Coming book, The Rookie Cook.

I had mentioned to my husband yesterday that I was planning on making banana muffins. I didn't end up getting to it, so when the evening hit and hubby asked where the muffins were, he was a little disappointed that there weren't any! (Ooops!) He has to put in a few long days at work, so I decided today that I would get them made and that way when he gets home he will have a treat, and he can take some to work the next couple days too. I don't normally put chocolate chips in my banana muffins, but figured I'd add them this time to make them more special for hubby. He isn't a fan of bananas but doesn't mind them in muffins, and adding chocolate into the muffins is a definite bonus for him!

This recipe can be made into a Banana Cake, or muffins.

-margarine or butter, softened    1/2 cup
-granulated sugar                        1 1/4 cups
-Large eggs                                  2
-vanilla                                          1 tsp

-all-purpose flour                          2 cups
-baking powder                           2 1/2 tsp
-baking soda                                1/2 tsp
-salt                                              1/4 tsp

-mashed banana                          about 3 medium ( 1 1/2 cups)

Cream margarine, sugar, eggs and vanilla together in large bowl until light and fluffy.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl.

Add flour mixture to margarine mixture in 3 additions, alternating with banana in 2 additions, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat on low until batter is smooth. 

FOR CAKE- Turn into 2 greased 8 inch round pans. Bake in 350F oven for25 mins until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans for 5 mins before turning out onto wire racks to cool. Makes one 2 layer cake. Cuts into 16 wedges.

FOR MUFFINS- Fill muffin cups 3/4 fulll. Bake in 350F oven for 15 to 17 mins until wooden pick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean. (I have found it takes about 25 mins for them to be completely cooked) Cool in pan for 5 mins before removing to wire racks to cool. Makes 2 dozen muffins.

Optional- If you want to add chocolate chips, mix in 3/4 package of your favourite chocolate chips before baking.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Doll Love!

I have started making some of my Christmas presents early this year. Firstly, because we are expecting our second baby in December (Yay!). I know I'll be super busy as the end of the year draws near so I'd like to get as many done as possible before I start stressing about time limits. Secondly, because I have to send some to Australia and my step sister will be going over there in a few months, so I'd like to send them with her and skip the large postage fees! Lol

I was looking for doll patterns to make for my daughter and found a few that looked good. I was really excited to try one in particular, and once I started it I became OBSESSED with the pattern! Not only does this pattern make an adorable doll but it can also be made into monkeys, bunnies, bears or cats! And it was SO FUN to work up. I seriously want to try all the variations and different colors of each! I'm eager to make the monkey next, I think it would be super cute in hot pink! If you're curious about what I'm talking about then head on over to this amazing blog and check it out.

Here is my finished doll...

There was even a link to a free pattern for the reversible dress. I just whipped it up in about 10 minutes. It's not the best sewing work ever, but I was trying to get it done quickly so I could share this little doll project with you all.
 I am over the moon excited for Little Monkey to open it up at Christmas. She already loves her toy babies so I think she's going to like this too! I'm so happy I have a little girl to make these fun gifts for!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Easy Peasy Taco Salad

Last night we had taco salad for supper! I had ground beef thawing and couldn't decide what to make with it, so stuck with something simple.

I wanted to share with you the home-made version of taco seasoning I use when I don't have any of the pre-packaged stuff in my cupboard.

2 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp onion powder
3/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp sea salt (or regular table salt)
Dash cayenne

This amount is good for 1 pound of ground beef. Mix with cooked beef along with 1 cup water and simmer.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

A Kitchen Picnic!

This afternoon Little Monkey and I went outside so she could play in her sandbox. Normally my girl stays outside for as long as I let her, but today after about 20 minutes of playing, she asked to go inside.
 So after some time colouring, I came up with another idea to keep us entertained for a little while. A few weeks back I bought a bag of frozen blueberries with the intent of making blueberry muffins or pancakes. Since I hadn't completed that task yet I decided to make a batch of muffins. Luckily we have central air, so baking in this hot weather doesn't affect us at all! 

I set up a little picnic table on our kitchen floor and after the muffins had cooled a little, we enjoyed a snack of blueberry muffins and juicy grapes! 

As soon as I put the plates down Little Monkey was snatching up some muffin!

Our picnic was delicious, and I had the best company to enjoy it with! ;)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Cheesy chicken and rice crockpot recipe

I tried out another chicken crockpot recipe the other day. I like this one because it cooked the rice in the crockpot with the chicken. If you want to see the original recipe post, check it out here.

Please forgive the picture, it doesn't look very appetizing, but I promise it was very good!


1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cheddar cheese soup
1 1/2 cups water
1 small onion, diced
1 cup uncooked rice
4 chicken breasts
1/2 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste 
Shredded cheese for topping (optional)

In a medium bowl, combine both soups, water, onion and rice.
Spray slow cocker with cooking spray. Place breasts in bottom of slow cooker. Season chicken with lemon & pepper seasoning. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Pour soup mixture over chicken breasts.
Cook on low 6/8 hours.

I used frozen chicken breasts and long grain brown rice. I also didn't have cheddar cheese soup but found a can of cream of broccoli soup in my cupboard so used that instead. I thought it tasted very good. I bought a can of cheddar cheese soup so that I can try the recipe again. I also think this dish would taste good by experimenting with other soups, cream of celery, or cream of asparagus perhaps!