Monthly Archives: March 2011

If you think we have a lot of kids, you should meet my brother and sister-in-law. They just very recently had their 11th baby.

Thats right ELEVEN KIDS!!

Questions that usually follow that statement…

1. What is the age range? 17 years to a few weeks old.

2. Are there any twins? No, they are all about 18 to 22 months apart.

3. How old is your sister-in-law? That’s really none of your business. What?! Your the one asking the personal questions, not me.

4. How do they do it? I don’t know, but they are pretty darn good at it. We crazy love every one of those awesome kids.

I entered the family when they only (I know, ONLY) had four. It’s been very cool to watch their family grow & grow & grow & grow…

Traditionally in my circle of friends and family after someone has a baby a group of us will organize a few weeks of meals to bring to the new mother and father. Having been on the receiving end of this, I can’t even begin to describe how wonderful and helpful this is. Just as much as I love getting these meals, I also love giving them. Who could pass up a chance to hold a beautiful newborn & hear a new mothers war stories.

Cooking for a family of 13 sounds daunting I know, but it can be done! Luckily I have had the pleasure of cooking for my huge extended family for some time now & have picked up a few tricks along the way.

What’s on the menu today? Tri tip in a garlic, basil marinade, roasted rosemary potatoes, and a big beautiful green salad. This is a perfect meal to serve to a large party in your home, or wrap up to go as I have done here. Is it a good amount of work? Yes! But the labour of love’s load is always light.

I have one younger sister whom I love to pieces. We don’t get to see each other a ton, but when we do get together  we get along famously. Even better when ever we see each other something about what we have on is matching. Our shoes, our nail polish, our purses, it’s always something!

Of course a little teasing has to happen. For example we were exchanging recipes & I was telling her how much I love to make Mexican food. She reply’s:

“I’m sure it’s white girl mexican food.”

Me: “What exactly does that mean?”

Her: “You know, you’re a total white girl. Of course you’re going to make white girl Mexican food.

Me: “Hmmmm, I don’t know how to take that…”

So here are the chicken tacos I make. The are easy, full of flavor, and my white boys get super excited when I make them.

Mar 23

Turkey Chili

Ahhhh, spring is here & I am definitely ready for all the things spring has to offer. Being able to hang up my winter jacket for a while, refreshing my flower pots with colorful new blooms, warmer weather, and we are one season away from summer!

Don’t even get me started on all the reason why I love summer…

Looks like we’ll have to wait a bit longer for that warmer temperature , and until then I am going to (try to) enjoy some of the things that come with colder/rainy weather.

A big pot of turkey chili with some warm buttery cornbread is one of those things. It’s easy to make, full of good things for you, & more importantly it helps to remind me why I love the winter season even when I’m totally sick of it.

Mediterranean Pasta

I am a big fan of babyshowers. I love the food, the games, the gifts, the cake….

Who doesn’t love eating cake in the middle of the afternoon?!

I also really, really love cooking for babyshowers. This is the time where I am able to make food as pretty and as girly as I want it to be. This does not mean I want to serve my guest teeny, tiny, diet food. It can be big. There can be a lot of it. And it can still be beautiful and girly.

I made this pasta dish for a shower my friend threw. A surprise baby shower. Pregnant women LOVE to be surprised. Try it. See what happens….

Actually the gal it was being thrown for was pleasantly surprised. She thought she was coming over to babysit four kids. Instead she was showered with gifts, lunch, and cake. Definitely a good surprise. Definitely a great afternoon….:)

Mar 14

Spanish Rice

Spanish Rice

I don’t know about you but I like my side dishes to be quick, flavorful, and nutritious. This rice is packed with veggies and it’s perfect with tacos, enchiladas, or if you wanted to add some chicken it would make a great meal. It’s also a yummy side dish to bring to a pot luck, or to a family that has just had a baby.

Ahhhh, good ol’ baby meals. I loved it when my friends and family cooked for me. So much, it almost makes me want another baby.

I’m lying….

I just want people to cook for me, I’m good on the babies. Back to the rice….

Tripple Chocolate Chip Birthday Cookies

So I have to be honest here, baking really isn’t my thing.

Don’t get me wrong,

I occasionally enjoy to bake things & I always like to eat baked things but baking just for the sake of baking? Nahhhh. I don’t know what my deal is. Maybe it’s my lack of sweet tooth (which is replaced by a wine and cheese tooth) or maybe I love the freedom of making stuff up as I go when I cook. Come to think of it measuring cups do make me feel a little clausterphobic.

Hmmmmm…

Whatever it is, it was trumped by my love for my nine year old when he asked me to make him some cookies to share with his class for his birthday. He was very specific, they had to be chocolate, they had to have sprinkles, they cannot be store bought, and they wanted milk to go with it. So I rolled up my sleeves & came up with these. (I honestly didn’t mean for that last line to rhyme, but I’m kinda glad it did.)

Breakfast Potatoes

So we don’t exactly live in the country, but we don’t exactly live in the suburbs either.

We do however have cows in our backyard….

They are not ours, and I am totally cool with that. We also have lots of big trees around our home which I love. We moved into our home during the summer and completely fell in love with all the huge mature trees. Leaves and all. During the summer season my husband would happily and quickly do the yard work in under an hour & sometimes wish he had more to do. Be careful for what you wish for…..

Fall came, and down came the leaves. Down, and down, and down, and down. My husband finally enlisted the help of our four boys to help him rake leaves, blow leaves, and bag leaves. When the yard was leaf free (for the moment) I would whip my hungry (and handsome) dudes up another breakfast we dubbed “cowboy breakfast”. You know, because blowing leaves is a lot like herding cattle.

These potatoes would be great wrapped in a tortilla, in a omelette, or right out of the skillet and onto your plate.

Pasta with Peppers & Peas

Try saying that three times fast.  Pasta with Peppers & Peas, Pasta with Peppers & Peas, Pasta with PPPP… Well thankfully this dish is easier to make then it is to say.

I don’t usually make a ton of vegetarian meals. I’m not opposed to them, I just don’t get a ton of chances to make them. Here’s the deal: I have four kids. Not only are they kids with HUGE appetites, they are also all boys. So times that huge kid appetite by 10, and thats the crew I am feeding every night.

Oh ya! I also have a husband who enjoys eating dinner when he gets home. Can’t forget about him, because he’s pretty great….:)

So as you can see I have a good amount of bellies to keep full & those bellies usually like meat, but this pasta really did the trick! It’s a little sweet, a little spicy, and a lot of good! The dudes asked for seconds & I’m sure yours will too!