Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Clean Floors

I have one quick comment to say about today: there is no greater feeling then walking across clean linoleum floors! :)  My house is not very large and there is only two of us living here but the floors always seem to be constantly dirty (I blame it on the dog!).  But today is my day off from work and I buckled down and washed the floors, which is quite difficult with a puppy who just wants to play in the dirty water. 

That is all! Have a great Wednesday y'all :)
~Kellie Anne

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Something New Sunday - Tuna Noodle Casserole

   I feel awful for not doing a 'Something New Sunday' last week.  Not that I have a lot of followers, but I was doing a really good job of doing a new recipe every Sunday since I had started this blog.  Oh well, today is a new day (and a new week for that matter) so it's time for a new recipe. 
   I have been craving tuna lately and missed the good-ole tuna casserole that I use to have in grade school.  I went to a small town school growing up with really nice lunch ladies, who actually took the time to make good meals for all the kids.  One of my favorite things that we had was the homemade buns. Oh. My. God. Just typing that made me want to go back in time to have some of those biscuits.  Focus Kellie, I'm talking about the tuna casserole that the lunch ladies made, not the delicious biscuits! The casserole was creamy with the noodles and tuna, yet crunchy cause they would top it with potato chips. 
  So, I wanted to try and duplicate the recipe but to add a little more flavor since my taste buds have grown-up since I was a little kid.  Here is my adult, yet kid friendly take on tuna noodle casserole.

Tuna Noodle Casserole: 

8 oz cooked angel hair pasta (you could use spaghetti, linguine or any long pasta of your choice)
2 cans of tuna
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 can of corn (drained)
1 cup milk
3 tsp. butter
your choice of seasonings
bread crumbs
fried onions

  Mix cooked noodles with tuna, soup and corn; I seasoned my dish today with black pepper and garlic salt. Pour into greased 9x13 casserole dish and cover with bread crumbs and french onions.  Drizzle milk and butter over top; cover with tin foil.  Place in preheated 400 degree and cook for 15 minutes. Stir mixture to make sure edges don't burn.  Recover and cook for another 15 minutes, during the last 5 minutes cover casserole with more bread crumbs and fried onions.  This dish is ready to eat once the bread crumbs and fried onions are a nice golden brown. Serve and enjoy this Lent-friendly meal! :)

  Well I think I may have found my new calling as a school lunch lady! ;)
  No, but seriously this might give the Titonka School District lunch ladies a run for their money.  The noodles are soft, the sauce is creamy and the topping is uber crunchy!  The corn is a nice little touch, since most tuna dishes call for peas (which I would have loved to add, but Aaron doesn't like peas).  The dish makes probably 8 small portion servings, which is nice to have leftovers for both of us to take to work.  This dish is quite tasty and doesn't need a lot of seasonings, but Aaron suggested maybe some Old Bay seasonings next time.

  The next time I do make this recipe, I will add a little more milk and shorten the cooking time by 5 minutes or so.  Aaron thought it was fine between the mouthful of bites that he kept shoveling in.  Though he might have enjoyed it, I thought it was still dry and as the cook I like to make sure my recipes are perfect no matter who's eating it. 

Please let me know what you think! :)

~Kellie Anne

Close up of the yummy-goodness :)

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Something New Sunday - Mexican Pot Pie

Today's 'Something New Sunday' truly is something new; in fact, I kind of just made it as I went.  It's a rainy, miserable day here in north central Iowa, so I got busy cleaning and one of the place I cleaned was my pantry & fridge.  As I'm cleaning I notice that I've got some Mexican infused ingredients that were tucked all the way to the back.  I instantly got hungry for tacos but while I kept digging/cleaning, I couldn't find any so I had to think of something else to make. So I decided to just go with the flow and add ingredients as I felt necessary. I had given my boyfriend, Aaron, a  heads up while I was cooking that this was just going to be a hodge-podge of foods thrown together.  Luckily, he's not picky and is always willing to try a new recipe.

Mexican Pot Pie
(an original by Kellie Anne)
  1# - ground beef

  1 - small yellow onion; chopped
  2 - cans of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
  1 - jar of Tostitos Monetery Jack Queso dip
  1 - 10 oz can of enchilada sauce
  1/2 - cup of taco sauce (optional)
  2 - cups shredded cheddar cheese
  1 - tablespoon black pepper
  1 - teaspoon crushed red pepper
  jalapeno chili peppers (optional)

  Brown ground beef and chopped onion until meat is no longer pink and onions are tender; drain off fat.  Add the taco sauce, enchilada sauce and peppers to meat & onions and simmer for 10 minutes (depending on how spicy you like your food, the taco sauce can be omitted since the enchilada sauce is pretty hot on it's own). 
  Grease a 9x13 baking dish and spread one can of the rolls to cover the bottom of the dish.  Cover the dough with the shredded cheese and then the meat sauce mixture.  Take the queso cheese dip and lightly cover the meat sauce mix.  I'm not a fan of jalapeno chili peppers, but Aaron is; so on half of the pan I coated the queso with the sliced peppers to give it a little more kick.  Carefully roll out the second can of crescent rolls and place over everything.  If you still have some queso cheese dip, spread a light layer on the top of the crescents.
  Cover pan with tin foil and place into preheated oven at 350.  Cook for 15 minutes covered and then another 15 minutes uncovered (or until crescents are lightly browned).  Slice and serve!

  I need to make-up new recipes more often! This recipe has a variety of flavors and textures with ever bite and as you see from the photo above, screams yumminess.  The crescents on both the top and the bottom of the dish, add a nice crunch and almost 'sandwich' in everything. The queso not only adds creamy-ness but lots of spicy kick.  We like our food spicy, but even for me I thought that meat sauce could have been tamed down so I think I'll opt out the taco sauce next time. I had used both the taco sauce and enchilada sauce, cause I didn't think the can of enchilada would be enough.  I didn't eat the half with the chili peppers, but Aaron loved the added goodness; he said they added a hint of sweet before the spice kicked in (you can see I added some more on top so I knew which side was his).  
  I hope you enjoy this dish that I came up with all on the fly. I can see this being made with shredded chicken and when red & green peppers get in season, I'll slice some up and add that too it. If you're not a fan of the queso dip, you could probably substitute more shredded cheese.

  We did have a fun time trying to name this dish; we came up with everything from Taco Mix-up to Spicy Mexican Sandwich.  When Aaron said that the corner piece was the best cause you got the buttery-flakiness of the crescents, Mexican Pot Pie just had to be the name of this new dish.  He loved it so much that he even broke his New Years Resolution of not taking any seconds with this dish.  That's when I know I have made a good dish! :)

Well, I'm super full from eating and blogging all about my creation, so I'm off to bed!

~ Kellie Anne

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Something New Sunday - Garlic Skinless Chicken (for one)

I wish I would have know about this website in college -; it is FABULOUS!! :) There is a large variety of main dishes, desserts, beverages and even doggie treats (for my little Oscar).  I found it through Pinterest (of course) about a year ago, but haven't really had a chance to do anything from the site yet. This blog is also great cause they show step-by-step photos.  Well, my boyfriend is off to a Super Bowl party and I'm home alone so why not give it a try.

I had thawed chicken breast in the fridge and after picking from the over 15+ recipes (just in Chicken-Skinless Breast category alone), I selected this tongue-tied name of dish: Pan Seared Oven Roasted Garlic Skinless Chicken Breast.  I had to shorten the title not only for the blog but to remember it in my head for future reference. 


Garlic Skinless Chicken (for one)

Skinless boneless chicken breast (well trimmed)
1 T olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced


   Simmer olive oil in pan (I used a my cast iron skillet for this dish) over medium heat. Add garlic and "bloom" for 1 minute. (I had to look up what that meant and basically it means to start to brown). Remove from heat, tilt pan and remove as much of the garlic as possible to a small cup; leaving the oil and place back over the medium heat. Salt and pepper to taste then place in pan smooth side down and sear till brown.  Remove from heat and flip chicken. Spread bloomed garlic over the breasts evenly. Take pan from stove top and place in preheated 350 degree oven and roast until internal temp of 165. This will be about 20-25 minutes depending on the size of the breast (my chicken breast only took about 15 minutes to cook).  Remove from oven and pan. Let rest for 5-10 minutes prior to serving.
  Chicken was really moist (as it should be I guess since it's cooked in oil) and the garlic added some great flavor.  I can see this ate alone (like I did today) or on top of pasta, rice or maybe even cut in slices on top of a salad. 

~ Kellie Anne

Puppy Bowl 2013

I'm not a fan of football at all and my boyfriend can vouch that for the last five years he has had to struggle to put up with the fact that I know nothing about the sport.  You see, I was raised to love the American game of baseball and was never taught any other sport.  My two older brothers "played" football, but weren't any good at it to really get into the games. So, when Aaron and I started dating during his senior year of football, he was quite surprised how little I knew about the sport; I guess he just figured everyone knew the basics of football.  Well, I'm slowly learning the basics of football and give all my credit to Aaron and his family & friends to teach me and deal with my 'blondeness' when we sit and watch football games. 

Today is Super Bowl Sunday and usually I do get excited to meet up with friends, eat tons of junk food and laugh at the funny commercials. Unfortunately, I have been battling the cold/flu for five days now and I didn't want to pass along my germs to others, so I am sitting at home with my puppy, Oscar.  Aaron is off at one of his friends for some pre-game partying and video-gaming (another thing that I have had to learn through this relationship).  So, its just me and my favorite pooch spending the day together and I am super excited for the Animal Planet "Puppy Bowl" to start!

Last year, I made Aaron's college roommates watch the Puppy Bowl, but they were not impressed. And it doesn't look like Oscar is too excited about watching other puppies either...


Oh well, I guess I'll just enjoy the cuteness of adoptable puppies bouncing around and playing together all by myself.  Hmmm, I wonder how Aaron would feel if I got ourselves another puppy?! Oscar does need a friend to play with when we're away and I still do want to get a girl puppy.

Hope you all enjoy the Super Bowl and if you get a chance, take a minute to watch the Puppy Bowl!

~Kellie Anne

Friday, February 1, 2013

Fab-Ab February

It's the first of February and when I originally said that I was going to do this blog, I did say I would have some fitness post.  Here are some things you need to know about Kellie Anne's take on 'fitness':
  •   I don't have a gym membership, because I feel that I can get the same results at home if you know the proper moves and technique (not saying that gyms are awful, I just know how to work out at home to get the results that I want). 
  •   I don't have a fitness/health background, but I feel like if you do any sort of physical activity is better then none.  My boyfriend also gives me great pointers too and I value his opinion cause he has been a college athlete for the last 4 years (and knows what works and what doesn't).
  •   My kind of fitness isn't the overpowering, hardcore kind of fitness.  It's more or less just simple steps that anybody can adapt to into their schedules and if you miss a day or two, it's not the end of the world.  Towards the end of 2012 I started to become a couch potato, so these are perfect ways to slowly step up my game for 2013 and a get a little more fit.
So after all that, I hope you take the time too at least give this a try.  This month's workout is entitled "Fab-Ab February" (cutesy, I know) and there are three simple moves for everyday of the month to help you start to get that slim/tighten core. Remember, these are just 'beginner moves', so don't expect to see crazy results right away; but with the help of three simple moves (sit-ups, push-ups and planks) you're sure to get jump start your own 2013 New Years Resolution.  You can vary the amounts of each move to your own prefrences and do as many reps per day (example: I hate push-ups cause I have like no upper body strength, thats why I have a slow increase as the month progresses).  Oh, and you might notice I put that I'm not working out on Valentine's Day cause I have to work till 8 o'clock that night and do want to spend some time with my boyfriend.

Let me know what you think and seriously, I would love to hear some tips/pointers.

Hope you "feel the burn" he he :)

~ Kellie Anne