Archive for October, 2013

I love homemade bread but my poor excuse for arms don’t like to knead bread.  They protest, loudly!  Anyway, I bought a bread machine hoping that would solve the problem but I never use it because I just don’t like the way it turns out.  Finally, I found a recipe that fulfills my need of being homemade without a bread machine or kneading.  I have tried it out twice and both times, great success!  This recipe was found on blog called I Heart Naptime.  You can go to it by clicking here.  I am not going to post the recipe here out of respect for my fellow bloggers.  I am sure she would like the blog hits so please go to that link to see the recipe (her pictures are better than mine too), its worth it!


Erin, The Burbs


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I have been on a risotto kick lately.  I am loving the consistency and versatility of it.  It has the ability to be the same each time you make it and be completely unique each time you make it, all at the same time!  It is something you can always count on to “feel” the same each time.  It is creamy and deliciously rich but each recipe makes it completely unique and different and a new taste adventure!  Risotto is a great side for beef, chicken, fish, or even game meat!


So, most recently I made a cheddar risotto.  Try it out, it was yummy.  I found it in a cooking magazine but I cut it out of the magazine and don’t remember where so I need to make it known, I am sharing someone else’s recipe 🙂

4 T butter

1 cup chopped yellow onion

2 cups arborio rice (yes, it has to be Arborio rice)

5 cups hot water

1 chicken bouillon cube

1/2 t salt

2 cups grated cheddar cheese (sharper is better!)

1/2 cup of diced ham (you can use deli ham, just cut it into little squares)

4-5 cups spinach

black pepper

Melt butter in large saucepan over medium-high heat.  Cook until butter starts to brown (it should be 2-3 minutes).  Stir in onions and rice and cook for about 2 minutes.  Stir often.  Add hot water and bouillon cube, and salt.  Increase heat to high and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.  Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until done.  Taste it to make sure.  Risotto should be creamy and almost thick soup like but still have the rice feel like rice, not mush.  It will absorb some of the remaining liquid even as it sits after it is removed from the heat.

Remove pan from heat and stir in cheddar and ham.  Stir until cheese is melted and stir in spinach.  Serve immediately.  Serves 8.

Erin, The Burbs

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I have been working on making a few recipes completely on my own lately (I always change recipes to work better for me and my tastes but I do usually start with some recipe as a jumping point) and this is my latest.

If you do not drink or use alcohol, the alcohol in this cooks off before you eat it BUT if that still does not make you comfortable, you can find some non-alcoholic cooking wine in some grocery stores (even here in Utah because it is non alcoholic); it is usually with the vinegars.

So, this recipe makes enough sauce for 4 small pasta portions or 2 large ones.

Here we go:

Start by finely mincing 2 garlic cloves and finely chopping 1/2 of an onion.  Turn a pan on medium high heat and let heat up for about 1 minute.  Add enough olive oil to the pan to lightly coat it.  Allow that to heat for another minute or so.  Drop in the onions and garlic, they should sizzle when you drop them in.  Stir and saute that around for about 4-5 minutes.  Remove from heat for about 30 seconds and then add 1 cup of white wine.  Put back on the heat and bring to a simmer.  Allow to simmer strongly until the wine reduces to about half of what you put in, stirring frequently.  Sometimes your head plays tricks on you and it is hard to tell.  Just use your best judgement, it does not have to be perfect.

Next, turn it down to a low simmer and add 1 1/2 cup heavy cream.  Stir to mix and begin to bring back to a simmer while you prepare the next part.

Now in a small bowl, mix 2 T flour and about 1/3 cup water together.  Just before the sauce comes back to a simmer, slowly stir in the flour and water mixture.  Make sure the mixture was stirred just before you pour it in or the flour will settle to the bottom.  Continue to stir and allow to simmer for just a few minutes.  It will thicken but it will not be as thick as alfredo or red sauce.

Add 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese and stir until it melts.  Finally, add 2 T butter, salt and pepper to taste and stir until mixed.

Serve on pasta, garnish with chopped parsley.  Now, I served mine on a traditional spaghetti noodle but it was only because I had already started those for dinner already when I decided I did not want a red sauce like the kids were having.  I would prefer this on an angel hair or fettuccine.



I also thought after I made this that a GREAT addition would be mushrooms!  A white wine mushroom cream sauce?  Can I say YUM!  I bet if you Just chop them up to a medium size chop and saute them with the garlic and onions to start.  Then finish the recipe the same way.  I wish I would have thought of it before, but I forgot (and didn’t have mushrooms anyway).

Erin, The Burbs

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My mom made a great little trick or treat bag for me when I was little and I always remembered it fondly.  I made one for each of my kids and finally decided to make a pattern for it.  I am happy to say that the pattern is now available on Etsy.  It holds more than 3.5 lbs of candy so it is large enough to hold the candy your kids will collect but my toddler is able to carry it around (until it gets to heavy of course).



If you are interested, check it out!  Click on this link.

Erin, The Burbs

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I know I know, thanksgiving is still a long ways away but I printed mine this morning. This is a handy little planner for your Thanksgiving Dinner preparations. Are you hosting dinner at your house this year? Then you will definitely be grateful that you have this little list to help you stay  on top of it.

I did not create this, in fact I have nothing to do with the creative mastermind behind it however I fell in love with it.  I got this from the Pinch a little save a lot website. Thanksgiving plannerThe creator of these adorable printables is a genius.

Following is a link to the printable.


I just put it in my home management binder so it is right there staring me in the face for the next 2 months

Happy Organizing,

Kim (the sticks)

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