I hope everyone had a good Easter. Mine was good but it didn’t really feel like Easter. And now they are calling for more snow this weekend. Spring is taking its sweet time getting here this year, that’s for sure. Speaking of sweet I did make a wonderful strawberry cake for Easter. It was a Trisha Yearwood recipe from one of her cookbooks. We wanted strawberry shortcake but nobody has strawberries yet. So this was a nice alternative. My icing didn’t turn out the best but it tasted good.
I’ve been going at 200 MPH it seems lately. Work, work, and the kids are all I seem to focus on here as of late. Well I need to slow down and refocus. I have gotten away from myself and the things I love. Don’t get me wrong I love spending time with the kids but I don’t have to make it a priority like I have been. I can’t tell you the last time I have really baked something, well that is going to change tomorrow night. I actually cooked dinner last night too, and I mean really cook dinner, homemade baked ziti, with homemade sauce. And I really need to refocus on here and get back to posting. I love doing this blog, I really do. Here are a few things that have been happening.
– Dad applied and interviewed for a Job in Florida, so that brought that more to reality
– I am counting down the days till we go to the Smoky Mountains, I need to get away, there are few people that are getting on my last nerve
– What I have been reading
o The Dare Valley Series by Ava Miles
o One Lavender Ribbon
o War Brides
o Message From Nam by Danielle Steel
– We took the kids to princess night at the local frontier league baseball game
– We took the kids for their first day at the local amusement park
I guess that is about it.
I love poor man lasagna! Not only is in easy to make it is great tasting too. I know the name sounds strange but it says it all, it is a way to make lasagna on a budget. I have googled poor man lasagna before and have found a few different recipes actually. This may have other names but this is what we have called this since I was a kid. Basically all it is boxed mac and cheese, spaghetti sauce, and cheese. Now you can add meat to it if you would like, that is the other great thing about it, you can add what you want and make it your own. Usually I use just Kroger brand mac and cheese or Kraft mac and cheese, this time I used the Anne’s mac and cheese. I have always wanted to try it and figured this was as good as time as any. I also added some Italian seasoning and garlic powder to my spaghetti sauce to give it a little more flavor. The key to good poor man lasagna is making it to your taste. Here is how I made my most recent batch…I prepared the mac and cheese like it said on the box. Usually I just use the sauce right out of the jar and do not add anything to it. But this time since I added some flavor to it, I let it cook on low for about 20 minutes before I even started the mac and cheese. Just enough to let the extra Italian seasoning and garlic flavor cook in a bit. After the mac and cheese was done I poured in the spaghetti sauce and mixed it all together. I used to boxes of mac and cheese and 1 1/3 jars spaghetti sauce but again it’s all about your taste. If you like more sauce add it, if you want the mac and cheese to stand out more add less sauce, if you like meat add it. There is no right or wrong way. Usually after I mix the spaghetti sauce and mac and cheese together I would pour it in a baking dish throw some cheese on time and cook till the cheese was nice and golden brown. Since I was making mine for lunches for work and I was running out of time. I just put the mixture into three good size microwavable containers and throw some Italian blend cheese on top. Then when I heated it up for lunch the cheese melted, it was not golden brown, but it was nice and melted. I hope you all enjoy!
Usually I’m telling you about stuff after they happen so today I’m going to share what is going on right now. As I sit here and type this I am trying my hand at homemade chicken noodle soup. I love Campbell’s chicken noodle soup but I do not need all that sodium and the low sodium kind has carrots in it and I do not like carrots in my chicken noodle soup. So I am trying my hand at my own take on chicken noodle soup without carrots. There maybe a recipe just like this one out there somewhere but I could not find it so I’m calling mine Southern Belle Chicken Noodle Soup. It is smelling good so far, I hope it is. I’m hoping to have it to pack for my lunch this week at work. I even bought a new soup bowl/cup to take it in. And then here in just a little bit I will be starting my sauce for baked ziti. This southern belle is getting her cooking on today. While I am doing all this I have The Sound of Music Live on the DVD player, for something to listen to. It was three years ago today that my grandma passed away in here sleep and The original Sound of Music was her favorite. In her last years at the nursing home that is all she watched, over and over and over. I like the original but I was in the mood for something a little different today. It’s hard to believe it has been three years already since she passed away. It seems like just yesterday. Hopefully after all my cooking is done maybe I can get a little reading in. If my soup turns out okay I will post the recipe later this week. Hope all are having a good day and thank you for reading Southern Belle Charm. I love this blog and hope all of you do too. A.M.
Almost two weeks ago now I made the Pioneer Woman’s Baked Ziti recipe. It was delicious! And I didn’t have as much cheese as the recipe called for. So it could only get better with the right amount of cheese. There was only two of us eating it that night so it made a little too much for the two of us. I ate it for lunch for a whole week and even gave some to one of the ladies at work. I really liked the fact that you made your own spaghetti sauce. I never realized it was that easy to make spaghetti sauce and I actually think it was better than any jar sauce. I would defiantly make it again, but I would try cutting the recipe in half, so I don’t end up with as much leftover. I highly recommend trying this recipe.
Yesterday was Birthday food day at work. So I made a cake, of course. I made a dark chocolate fudge cake with peanut butter chips and cookies n’ cream icing.
I used a dark chocolate fudge cake mix but did not prepare it the way it says to on the box. I used a trick I found on Pintrest some time ago. I used four eggs instead of three, milk instead of water, and butter X2 instead of oil. To the batter I added about 3/4 cup of peanut better chips. Baked it, let it cool, and then iced it with Betty Crocker Hershey Cookies n’ Cream icing. That icing was amazingly good! They have a Hershey Special Dark Chocolate icing too, I can’t wait to try that one.
I had every intention of making baked spaghetti but that did not go as planned. I started it but just never got around to finishing it. I sautéed a zucchini, onion, garlic, and some rainbow slaw mix with olive oil. While that was sautéing I cooked my whole wheat spaghetti. Once my spaghetti was done and my vegetables were sautéed to my like I mixed them all together with one jar of pasta sauce. At this point I had to leave to go out for a family dinner and was going to bake it when I returned. While that did not happen, it was too late so I put the spaghetti and vegetable mixture into containers to take for work and add mozzarella cheese to the top. That way when I heated up the spaghetti the cheese would melt on top, making it almost baked spaghetti.