Sharing our food successes and failures, new recipes and old favorites
...and throwing in some great money-saving deals here and there!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Free American Baby Magazine Subscription!

If you are pregnant or have a baby under a year of age, you can sign up for a FREE subscription to American Baby! I used to get this when Linds and Luke were babies and it's filled with lots of really interesting articles and information. Click the picture below to sign up and check it out!

American Baby Magazine


For those of you who are addicts to those daily deal sites (Groupon, Living Social, KGB Deals, etc.), here's one specific to moms, kids and babies. They've got lots of great buys on the site! Sign your e-mail up and you'll get a daily e-mail with their latest (today through Friday they're offering super cute 3-piece infant tank/capris/tutu outfits for under $15!).


Free Starbucks!

If you're anything like me, you're a sucker for a cup of coffee made by someone else...for some reason, my brew just doesn't taste as good no matter if I use the same beans or not. If I'm out and about, I'm known to splurge on Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts if the opportunity presents itself. I didn't realize, however, Starbucks has a rewards program, so of course I signed up and wanted to share the offer with you, too :) Just click the image below to sign up (all of the perks are listed below). Enjoy!


Welcome Level Perks (1-4 stars)

- Free drink on your birthday

Green Level Perks (5 stars +)

- All Welcome Level perks
- Free syrups and milk options for your beverage
- Free refills for brewed coffee or tea
- Free Tall (12 fl oz) beverage of your choice with whole bean purchase
- Free trial offers and updates

Gold Level Perks (30 stars+)

- All Welcome and Green Level perks
- Free beverage with every 15 stars you earn
- Special Customized Gold Level card
- Personalized offers and coupons

80% off

Another 80% sale at! The code is good through Monday. Click the image below and snag some certificates. For my Chester County people, there are a bunch of new places they've added - Twenty 9 Restaurant & Bar and Venice Pizza & Pasta in Malvern; Downingtown Country Club in D-town; Rino's Italian and the Bistro at Our Town in Exton; and the following in West Chester: Barnaby's, Shoo Mama's Fresh Farm Cafe, Olive Branch Tapas, Ryan's Pub, and the Courtyard Inn.

New recipes!

If I can keep up with this every two weeks, it's at least an improvement from once a month, right?! I seem to keep losing time more quickly as the days roll by, and I don't quite know how not to get lost in it. The gap in time probably wasn't helped by the fact that I needed to grocery shop and a lot of the meals were repeats of stuff I've done before. I did finally go shopping this past Thursday and managed to save $75 in coupons...I was pretty stoked about that! It took my $300 grocery down considerably.

I forgot to post my latest Munchin Mamas recipe from January. We had a "Make It or Break It" theme where we could have brought something healthy that went along with everyone's resolutions to eat healthier/diet/lose weight/etc., or we could bring something absolutely decadently delicious. I went the healthy route and made quinoa and black beans. I've never made quinoa, and now I'm a BIG fan! I added a little sour cream to the recipe just to give it some extra "oomph." I also made a baked three-cheese macaroni dish with bacon (yes, ANOTHER mac-and-cheese recipe) over the weekend that Linds, Scott and I liked (Luke is unfortunately still in his "I hate everything but ketchup" mode). Tonight was one of our favs - taco salads. Even Linds ate it for dinner (she's finally reached the age where she'll eat pretty much everything we do).

There are a few good deals out there, too, which I'll try to post. Hopefully this won't be the last post until mid-March ;-)

Quinoa w/ Black Beans
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup frozen corn kernels
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Sour cream

  1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the onion and garlic, and saute until lightly browned.
  2. Mix quinoa into the saucepan and cover with vegetable broth. Season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes,
  3. Stir frozen corn into the saucepan, and continue to simmer about 5 minutes until heated through. Mix in the black beans and cilantro.
  4. Garnish with sour cream.

Three-Cheese Baked Macaroni
Coarse salt
1/2 lb elbow macaroni
3 slices bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2 in. pieces
1.5 tsp minced garlic
3 large eggs
12-oz can evaporated milk
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1.5 cups grated sharp cheddar (6 oz.)
1/2 cup grated Monterey Jack (2 oz.)
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan (1 oz.)

  1. Preheat oven to 475. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook macaroni 6 minutes (it will still be undercooked). Drain. 
  2. Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium and add bacon. Cook until fat is rendered and bacon is crisp, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. 
  3. With a slotted spoon, transfer bacon mixture to a medium bowl. Add macaroni and stir to combine. 
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and evaporated milk. Add ½ tsp salt, nutmeg, and cheese; mix well. Add macaroni mixture and stir well to combine. 
  5. Transfer to an 8 or 9-inch square baking dish or a 2-qt gratin dish. With a spoon, gently spread mixture to form an even layer. 
  6. Bake just until sauce is bubbling at edges, 15-20 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Catch-up time!

So I feel like this is completely inexcusable - I mean, really? Nearly a month since I've updated? Wow, I suck. In my defense, I started working part-time from home, so by the time the kiddos are in bed, I usually catch up on a few work things that didn't get done during naptime and then try to get a few minutes in with the boy before completely crashing. We also joined our local YMCA and I've become totally addicted to going to the gym. Let me preface this by saying that I've *never* been very much into exercising, playing sports, etc., but since joining I've learned to love running (signed up for the Broad Street 10-mile run in May) and doing Body Pump (a barbell class that makes lifting not only tolerable, but almost kind of fun!). Mentally, I feel the best that I have in a long, long time. Physically, I'm in better shape than I've been in at least six or seven years (even lost 5 or 6 lbs since the beginning of the year!).

So, I think I've made enough excuses for now ;-) I'll post a few recipes that I've made over the last couple weeks to help make up for the disappearing act. I made my baked potato pizza for the game, too, so I'll repost that favorite.

Baked Potato Pizza
1 large pre-made pizza crust
4 medium unpeeled potatoes, baked and cooled
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup (8 oz) sour cream
6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
3 to 5 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 cups (6 oz) mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup cheddar cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Cut potatoes into 1/2-inch cubes. In a bowl, combine butter, garlic powder and oregano. Add potatoes and toss.
  3. Spread sour cream over crust; top with potato mixture, bacon, onions and cheeses.
  4. Bake at 400 for 15 - 20 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.
  5. Let stand for 5 minutes before cutting.
Yield: 8 slices

Beer Glazed Ham
1 boneless fully cooked ham (3 lbs.)
1 can beer
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 T balsamic vinegar
2 tsp ground mustard

  1. Place ham on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Score the surface of the ham, making diamond shapes ½ inch deep. 
  2. Set aside 2 T beer. Pour remaining beer over ham. 
  3. Bake, uncovered at 350 for 1 hour. 
  4. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, vinegar, mustard and reserved beer; spread over ham.
  5. Bake 40-45 minutes longer or until a meat thermometer reads 140, basting occasionally.

    Saucy Pepper Steak
    1 green bell pepper, cut into strips
    1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
    1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
    1 small onion, cut into strips
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    1/2 tsp black pepper
    3 T lite soy sauce
    1/2 cup BBQ sauce
    2 cups hot cooked brown rice
    1 lb. trimmed beef sirloin steak, cut into strips

    1. Heat large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium-high heat. Add bell peppers and onions; cook and stir 6 to 8 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Transfer to large bowl; cover to keep warm. 
    2. Add meat, garlic and black pepper to same skillet; cook and stir 3 min. 
    3. Add soy sauce; cook 1 min. or until meat is cooked through, stirring occasionally. 
    4. Add BBQ sauce; cook until heated through. 
    5. Spoon meat mixture into bowl with vegetables; toss gently. Serve over rice. 
    Makes 4 servings. 330 calories, 6 g fat per serving.

    Rosemary Ranch Chicken Kabobs
    1/2 cup olive oil
    1/2 cup ranch dressing
    3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
    1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon lemon juice
    1 teaspoon white vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
    1 tablespoon white sugar, or to taste (optional)
    4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into 1 inch cubes

    1. In a medium bowl, stir together the olive oil, ranch dressing, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, salt, lemon juice, white vinegar, pepper, and sugar. Let stand for 5 minutes. Place chicken in the bowl, and stir to coat with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
    2. Preheat the grill for medium-high heat. Thread chicken onto skewers and discard marinade.
    3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill skewers for 8 to 12 minutes, or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center, and the juices run clear.

    Cheesy Potato and Corn Chowder
    2 tablespoons margarine
    1 cup chopped celery
    1 cup chopped onion
    2 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth
    3 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
    1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn
    1 (2.5 ounce) package country style gravy mix
    2 cups milk
    1 cup shredded Mexican-style processed cheese food

    1. In large saucepan, melt margarine over medium high heat. Add celery and onion; cook and stir until tender, about 5 minutes.
    2. Add chicken broth; bring to a boil. Add potatoes; cook over low heat for 20 to 25 minutes or until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally.
    3. Stir in corn; return to boiling. Dissolve gravy mix in milk; stir into boiling mixture. Add cheese; cook and stir over low heat until cheese is melted.
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