Foodie Blog Roll 2

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sausage Rice Casserole Stuffed Peppers

Bell peppers are one of those things that add great flavor to a dish with out adding any heat. They can also serve as a wonderful presentation because they really hold their shape, even if they've been cooked.

Sausage Rice Casserole Stuffed Peppers

Growing up, my favorite casserole was always my mom's sausage rice casserole. It's s delicious and warm, filling and full of flavor, and there is something about it that is so satisfying! It's one of those dishes that just brings back memories. So while deciding what do to for my Pregnancy Foodie Project last week, I decided to take my favorite casserole, stuff it in a pepper and bake it all together.

Sausage Rice Casserole Stuffed Peppers
     makes 6 peppers
1 lb lean hot Italian turkey sausage
7 green bell peppers
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
2/3 C uncooked rice
1 10.5 oz can cream of chicken soup (98% fat free)
1 10.5 oz can cream of mushroom soup (98% fat free)
1/4 C milk (I used 2%)
1 T Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Chop the onion, one bell pepper and the garlic and set aside. Brown the sausage in a skillet over medium heat until it's cooked. Add the chopped ingredients and simmer until they are tender. Pour sausage and veggie content in to a large bowl. Add the rice, soups and milk and stir to combine. Pour into a 9X13 baking dish and cover. Bake for 1 hour, stirring 1/2 way through. If the mixture looks a little dry, add a little more milk and stir, cover and finish baking.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to boil. Cut the top inch off of the remaining bell peppers and clean the seeds out. Add the peppers and salt to the pot and cook for 3-4 minutes. You may have to use a large spoon to keep them under the water. The peppers will become bright in color.

Drain and let cool before handling. Place in a baking dish to make sure they fit.

When the casserole is finished, spoon mixture into peppers and cover with foil again.

Bake for 20 minutes, remove from oven and serve.

If you have your own sausage rice casserole recipe, feel free to try that with my pepper stuffing method. Just make sure to take a look at the measurements because I did change them from the origional recipe. There is normally more rice and one more can of soup. Also, my mom uses pork sausage, but I wanted to lighten it up a little. Like I was explaining in the beginning, the bell peppers do not have any heat, however if you have a picky eater that does not like spicy things, you might want to use regular sausage, not hot.

I hope you give this fabulous dish a try! The casserole is a family favorite, and who doesn't like stuffed peppers? This was my first time to bake peppers like this. I have done them in a slow cooker before and they are fantastic like that as well! If you would like to give that a try, try my slow cooker southwestern stuffed peppers.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cowboy or Cowgirl?

Yesterday was one of the most fun days of our lives. We got to find out the gender of our sweet little baby!! Chris and I wanted to have something fun to share with our friends and family that are far away. I thought y'all might enjoy it too! It's a......

We could not be more excited about our happy news! So what did we do? A photo shoot! 

Through all the excitement of taking calls and texts from family members after we emailed them the video, we were chasing day light to get a few more pictures in! Can you tell we're thrilled?!

The best part of the night was after everything had calmed down and we were getting ready for bed, she wiggled around and let me feel her for the first time! It's like she knew all of the commotion of the day was about her. What a wonderful feeling! And she must have know how happy her little movement made me because after that she would not hold still! Yeah, I'm sure you can imagine how much sleep I got after that. :) 

We feel so blessed and excited during this time in our lives and can't wait to meet our little Cowgirl! 
We love you, Baby GIRL Hann!! XOXO

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Parmesan Garlic Mashed Turnips

Ok, I have a confession. The only reason I made these is because I had to make something with turnips for my pregnancy foodie project. I had no intention of liking them.

Parmesan Garlic Mashed Turnips

I couldn't help it. I liked them anyway! I am pretty adventurous when it comes to foods and trying new things, however I just had a preconceived notion that turnips were icky.Worried about what they taste like,I did what I always do when I want to know something; I googled it. 
"What do turnips taste like?"  
I read that they are like a cross between a potato and a parsnip. Hmmm, that doesn't sound so bad. Slightly sweet, but a little bitter. Wait, slightly sweet? What the?
And the way that I mostly found mashed turnips prepared was with cinnamon and cloves and such, spices that remind me of sweet things. Well, that's a problem because I have been craving salty! So I stuck with what I know......salt, garlic and cheese. Oh, and that "bitter" taste? Don't worry; I've got a great tip to take care of that!

Parmesan Garlic Mashed Turnips
      serves 6-8
3 lb turnips, peeled and diced into 1 inch cubes {about 8 C}
1 small potato
1 T salt
4 cloves of garlic
1 T light butter, + 2 T butter
1/4-1/2 C milk {I used 2%}
1 C shredded Parmesan

Use a vegetable peeler and remove the skins form the turnips, dice and place in a large pot. {Some turnips come with a waxy coating that will come off when peeled.} Place the potato in with the turnips. This will get rid of the bitter taste of the turnips while they are cooking. 

Cover the turnips with cool water and place on the stove. Add the salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cover. Cook for about 15 minutes or until turnips are tender when pierced with a fork. 

While the turnips are cooking, in a small sauce pot, cook the chopped garlic on low heat for a minute or so. Add a T of light butter and cook for a minute more. Add the milk and stir to combine. This will serve as the cream in the mash. Let the milk simmer, stirring often.

When the turnips are finished cooking, drain and remove potato. Pour turnips back into pot and mash with potato masher. Stir in the garlic milk mixture a little at a time, then stir in the remaining butter. You may not need all of the milk. Gently stir and add in the Parmesan. Serve warm.

This is a GREAT option for someone on a low carb diet! It would be a great alternative to mashed potatoes on a holiday for someone with a special diatary need. The only other tip I have is to not let the turnips cook too long or they will become slightly watery at the bottom.

The taste was GREAT! I actually could not believe how much I liked them, and they were not bitter in the least. I'm sure they would be great with other spices and a little sugar in them as well, but I would make them like this every time. I have to say, I feel a little more grown up now that I've had and liked turnips. :)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Baby Hann Update

I've been one busy lil' momma lately! We have heard the heart beat, seen the baby and are eagerly awaiting our gender reveal appointment next week. I can't believe our little bun is well into the second trimester and I am already 5 months along! Time is flying by but don't feel like you've missed anything. I have been documenting our little one's progress week by week and I came up with my Pregnancy Foodie Project to help keep you in the loop.

You can click on the Pregnancy Foodie Project page link at the top of my blog each week for a little update. It's hard to imagine that Baby Hann has grown from the size of a poppy seed to the size of a turnip in just 13 weeks! What a miracle God has given us! I love this journey and can't wait to meet my cowboy or cowgirl, but for now, I'll just have to make due with these updates. Follow allong with me! xoxo

Monday, July 9, 2012

Creamy Avocado Pasta

I took a poll on facebook last week that said "Few things in life are better than......." and here is what you came up with:
Fried chicken, fresh veggies from the garden, brownies, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, sausage balls, baby back ribs, and brie cheese on rice crackers. Uh, yum!

My answer? Few things in life are better than a good bowl of pasta! Creamy sauce, warm noodles, zesty cheese; mmmmm, I love a good bowl of pasta. It fills you up and it's comforting. It just can't be beat.

Creamy Avocado Pasta

This dish was unbelievably easy to toss together and took less than 15 minutes to make! And it's gooOOOoood!! It's as easy as cooking the pasta, blending the sauce and mixing the two. The buttery avocado makes such a wonderful creamy sauce with out any oil, butter or cream. Only healthy fats in this dish!

The lemon juice and garlic make this pasta so fresh tasting and with the salty Parmesan, you won't even miss the meat! 

Creamy Avocado Pasta
        serves 6-8
1 box whole wheat linguine pasta
2 room temperature, ripe avocados, skin and pit removed
Juice from a lemon
3-4 cloves garlic
2/3 C shredded Parmesan cheese
Pinch of sea salt
Sun dried tomatoes, sliced
Fresh basil leaves
Extra Parmesan cheese

In a large pot, boil water, add pasta and cook to al dente. 

Meanwhile, blend the avocado, lemon juice, garlic, Parmesan, and sea salt in food processor. Drain the pasta and return pasta and sauce to the pot. Stir together, until sauce is warm. Serve pasta and top with sun dried tomatoes, fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.

This amazing sauce is so rich and creamy and only has 5 ingredients! It is so full of flavor that I didn't add any meat to the dish. If you feel like you need to, add some grilled, sliced chicken to make it a complete meal. This "carb lover" could not have been happier with the way it turned out though.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Apple Pie Peanut Butter Oatmeal and a Sibling Reunion

5 siblings,1 serving of oatmeal, 3 bowls; 1 sibling made it, 4 siblings ate it. Yeah, that's really how it happened.

Apple Pie Peanut Butter Oatmeal

Are you confused? Let me explain. I have the BEST siblings in the world! I mean it. This year was our 2nd annual Munson sibling reunion and I got to host it in Kansas City. 
(picking up the kids from the airport. Meredith, me, Luke, Jenny, Rachel)

We had a fabulous time! We did a day at the lake, the Red, White and Boom concert, and did lots and lots of eating! (We always travel with snacks!) A good time was had by all. At one point during the weekend, I was telling them about this yummy apple pie peanut butter oatmeal I like to make because it is so filling and healthy. I was going on and on about it.

(Red, White and Boom concert. Meredith, Rachel, Luke, me, Jenny)

So, on the last morning of their trip, Jen mentioned that she wanted to try the oatmeal I had been raving about. I told her, sorry, but I didn't have any apples. She proceeded to pull an apple out of her purse. (Seriously, we always have snacks with us!) At this point, Luke, Jen and I were the only ones awake and Luke said he wanted to try it too. I told them that it was really filling and since we were making cinnamon rolls too, that should be fine. So the plan was to make one big serving of oatmeal and split it between two bowls for them. 

Then......the other two woke up. Meredith and Rachel, a.k.a. the "little girls," headed down stairs for the morning. We told them what we were up to and they wanted some oatmeal too, duh. We made sure they knew that we were only making ONE serving because we only had ONE apple, but that didn't seem to matter. 
Rachel: "I'll just split a bowl with Meredith."
Jenny: "I know, but Luke and I are already splitting a bowl." 
Apparently we aren't very good at math. 

So, the pregnant sibling and the one who made the delicious oatmeal didn't have any. The sibling that tagged along with the idea got 1/4th of it in his own bowl. The two siblings that woke up late split 1/2 of the oatmeal in one bowl. And the sibling who provided the apple and asked for the oatmeal in the first place only got 1/4th of the oatmeal in a bowl. People, I couldn't make that up if I tried! 
(Our red, white and blue sibling picture for mom. Me, Rachel, Meredith, Jenny, Luke)

So, do I have you intreagued? Or just plain confused? 

Apple Pie Peanut Butter Oatmeal
       serves 1, or 4, whatever
1/2 C old fashioned rolled oats
1 apple
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Dash of freshly grated nutmeg
1 scoop of natural peanut butter

Stir oats and water together in a bowl and microwave for  minute. 
Meanwhile, chop the apple into small pieces. Remove bowl and stir in spices.  Stir in apple pieces microwave for 2 minutes, stirring half way through. 

Heat longer if apples are not tender. Remove from microwave and stir in scoop of peanut butter. {This is the best part!} The peanut butter will get all melty and combine everything together.

The apples make give the oatmeal the sweetness it needs from the natural sugars. I never add any sugar or sweetener to this. However, do whatever suites your taste. I also love the serving of healthy fats that this has. I like nuts in my oatmeal with some fruits, but I think the peanut butter flavor is perfect with the apple. 

So there you have it. The oatmeal story. Thanks for letting you share a little bit about my crazy, wonderful family. {Love you kids so much! xoxox}

Happy 4th of July everyone!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Bun in the Oven

Guess what?! This Cowgirl's got a bun in her oven!

Bun in the Oven

We have enjoyed sharing the news with family and close friends,

but Chris and I are so excited to finally be able to share with y'all that we are expecting a sweet little baby! 

God has truly blessed us and we both feel incredibly overwhelmed with joy for the arrival of our first born. This is such an amazing time in our lives. We have had a very busy 2012 so far and it is going to end on such a high note. Baby Hann is due December 18th and we are already looking forward to the best Christmas present ever!

We are almost 16 weeks along and I have been feeling wonderful! I feel so blessed that the first trimester was easy and that we have a healthy little "bun" so far. So, what do I do when I'm really excited about something? I do a photo shoot, of course!

My sister and I made the Better Homes and Garden's cinnamon roll recipe and my mother-in-law was nice enough to take some pictures for us. Thanks ladies!

Being pregnant, my food cravings have changed a little. I want anything salty, spicy, savory, zesty, smokey, and cheeeeeeesy! So, Chinese food and macaroni & cheese. Don't worry; I still eat plenty of cereal, it's just normally after eating my body weight in pasta first. "Hunter Hann" often finds himself bringing home bags of Spicy Cheetos and take out Mexican food, meaning I haven't been cooking as much. But make sure and stay tuned. I've been working on a really cool "pregnancy foodie project" that I will be sharing later this week.

I have been dying to tell you our exciting news and I'm so glad that I finally can. Thank you in advance for all your support and prayers. I know our little cowboy or cowgirl can feel the love! :)

  We are so excited to meet you, Baby Hann! Love, mom and dad!
cool pregnancy announcement, we are prego, fun baby announcemnet, cowgirl cowboy boots
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