Thursday, December 18, 2014

French Toast Casserole

Let's talk traditions, shall we?

Growing up, my siblings and I had this tradition of all sleeping in the same bed on Christmas Eve.  Yes, all four of us would pile in together and try our very best to go to sleep as quickly as possible.  I will never forget the year we all piled into my brother's bunk beds.  Two on the top, two on the bottom.  Forgetting that I was on the top bunk, I totally rolled off, onto the floor, while my parents were videotaping!  It was both humiliating and painful.  *lol*

One thing I don't remember doing on Christmas morning was eating breakfast.  I think that was because once all of the present opening was complete, my mom and dad immediately went into the kitchen to get everything ready for the big dinner while my sibling and I got cleaned up to visit our family.  There really was no time to stop and make breakfast, but I have to admit, I think that a traditional family breakfast after gifts would have been lovely.

So when I got married, I decided that I wanted a special breakfast on Christmas morning to be a part of our traditions.  I like to keep things simple, and my French Toast Casserole is perfect for this because everything can be assembled the night before, and all you have to do on Christmas morning is bake it off!

You won't believe how simple it is so let's get started!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Spinach Artichoke Dip

It's Christmas and of course you are being invited to parties and family get-togethers galore!  One of the good things about hosting a modern day holiday celebration is that it is customary for your guests to bring a dish.  One of the downsides to being a guest is what do you bring?  My go-to, and one of my personal favorites, is Spinach Artichoke Dip.  Now I know what you are thinking, "I have had a million and one spin dips. What makes yours special?"  Well, my spin dip is a little different from your average dip and I think the flavor is out-of-this-world.

I can't wait to share it with you so let's get started!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Mediterranean Stuffed Chicken Breast

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Pompeian Olive Oil.  
All opinions are my own. 

Tis' the season for holiday parties, family get togethers, and more!  I love spending time with all of the special people in my life, and I can't think of a better way to do that than around a table with a great meal!  The thing is, with all the shopping and meal planning for the big day, my pocketbook doesn't always allow for pricey cuts of meat and expensive wines.  That's when I turn to my pantry  for inspiration.  Using an inexpensive cut of meat, such as chicken, a few staples, and a good quality oil such as Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil, you can whip up this AMAZING Mediterranean Stuffed Chicken in no time!  Oh, and did I mention that in addition to being the first and only extra virgin olive oil to carry the USDA quality monitored seal, Pompeian has a wide variety of products including blended oils, vinegar, cooking wines and cooking sprays for all of your holiday cooking needs.  

With that being said, Let's Get Started!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Homemade Hamburger Helper

I don't know about you, but it seems that ever since we entered into the holiday season, life has been CRAZY!  I feel as though I don't have time to think straight, no less cook elaborate meals for my family.  It is in these moments that a telephone call to the local pizzeria or the drive-thru on the way home seems SO VERY tempting.  Or maybe it's the box of powdered "Heaven-Only-Knows" in the pantry, that is ready in 20 minutes, beckoning out to you.  Here's the thing.  You don't have to do it!  Simple isn't necessarily better and you know what else?  It's not necessarily faster either.   Take my Homemade Hamburger Helper for example.  A little short cut mixed with some great, fresh ingredients and you have dinner on the table in 30 minutes or less!

Let me show you how I did it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

French Onion Soup

Recently my husband has been traveling a lot.  This means that there have been many weekends where my mother-in-love and I are home alone.  So to keep myself occupied, and to test out some recipes, I have been entertaining friends.  I love getting together with my girlfriends.  You can guarantee that there will be lots of laughing, eating, and some form of a British television series in the background!

The best part about low-key entertaining with friends is that is doesn't have to be anything fancy.  Take my French Onion Soup for example.  Yes, it may sound fancy, but with only a few simple ingredients this elegant soup is perfect for a delicious night in with your friends.

Let me show you how I make it...

Monday, December 8, 2014

Chicken and Dumplings

The weather has been all over the place this winter, no?

One minute it's snowing, and literally within 10 minutes it can be raining.  The next day, 60 degrees!  I CAN'T TAKE IT!!!  That is why I love recipes like these Chicken and Dumplings!  It uses simple ingredients, has great flavor, and is super heart warming!  No matter what the weather is where you are at, these are going to hit the spot!  You won't believe how easy it is and I can't wait to show you!

Let's Get Started!

Corn Flake Wreath "Cookies"

A BIG part of the Christmas season, for me, has been cookie baking.  Growing up, my mom was always baking something.  Cakes, cookies, brownies.  She is an amazing baker!  Another thing she was always good at was getting us in the kitchen to help out.  Whether it be measuring flour, cracking eggs, stirring, she always involved us.

So when I was thinking of what I wanted my "formed" cookie to be for today's "Tis the Season for Cookies" round-up, I wanted to do something that would involve all of your children, no matter what their age or ability.  Then I saw a picture on Facebook for these adorable Corn Flake Wreath "Cookies".  While these are not actually what I would describe as a cookie, it is something that everyone can be apart of and the result is absolutely adorable!  I can't wait to share it with you so LET'S GET STARTED!