Jul 312013

A Week in the Kitchen with Carol

Wow! Have you ever had a month so full of activities that it was gone before you realized it? That’s what it has been like for us! Some of it was planned such as seeing Chicago in concert before the Fourth of July fireworks

2013-07-04 20.42.14

but some of it was totally unexpected. A repair man we had doing some work for us broke the water line coming into the house. The water line was in the ceiling of our basement in the area that is finished. It’s been a mess. We’ve been drying out, patching, priming with stain blocker, and painting ceilings and walls. What an unexpected adventure! But I’ve been thankful that there was no major damage to our furnace, water heater, or freezer. Everything is still running and I was grateful to have my freezer meals on hand to make the burden a little lighter!

I’m trying to work my way through our meals that we have in the freezer before I make more meals for the fall. It’s great to be able to just go to the freezer on Sunday and pull out dinners for the week. Here’s what I pulled out two weeks this month:


Week 1:

Grilled Chicken Salad
Wedding Soup
Tilapia with Mango Salsa (one of our favorite recipes from the Big Book of Freezer Cooking)
Burgers for the 4th
Chicken with Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Sauce (recipe I’m testing)


Week 2:
Pork chops for Mango Lime Pork Chops (see the recipe in the Notes section on Facebook)
Marinade for Steak Salad
Broccoli and Ham Frittata
Slow Cooker Beefy Burritos


My husband is already making requests for my next cooking day! So far he’s asked for Spinach Lasagna, Mango Lime Pork Chops, Mushroom, Beef and Brown Rice SoupFruit and Oat Bars made with fresh blueberries, and a new recipe for BBQ Pork that we have been testing.


It looks like I will be busy on my next cooking day at the end of August or early September! What are your cooking plans for this fall?

I’m looking for a recipe for a super thin pizza crust or a cracker crust. Does anyone have a recipe they would like to share with me? I want to duplicate one of our favorite pizzas. It’s a super thin crust pizza with portabella mushrooms, zucchini, red onions, and tomatoes.

Bonus Recipes

Here’s my latest test recipe that I shared this month on Facebook in the Notes section so you can test it too. They were good. I’m also freezing them to see how well they reheat for breakfast.


Low-Fat Chocolate Muffins

1 C. plus 2 T. whole wheat  or white flour
3/4 C. brown sugar
3/4 C. unsweetened cocoa
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/4 C. egg substitute
1 egg
2 t. vanilla
1/2 C. prune puree (I used baby food)
3/4 C. water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray. Whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining ingredients to the flour mixture and stir to combine. Do not over-mix. Spoon into muffin tin and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Makes 12 muffins.

Here are a couple of recipes that were a part of my summer recipe collection. I hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

IMG_2187Chicken and Black Bean Pasta Bowl

This is a great recipe to have on hand for a quick meal on the weekend. It is a nice mix a flavors. If it’s too spicy for your family, you can leave out the cumin, replace the tomatoes with green chilies with plain diced tomatoes, and make sure you use a non spicy barbecue sauce. This recipe is also a great way to use up leftover grilled corn. Just remove it from the cob and add a cup of it to the mixture.

MultiGrainWafflesMulti-Grain Waffle Mix

We’ve been trying to eat more whole grains at our house. I always see the whole grain frozen waffles in the grocery store and I thought it would be fun to make them ourselves at home. This recipe is good and they reheat well after being frozen. We just pop a couple in the toaster when we want a quick breakfast. Top them with fresh fruit and vanilla yogurt for a change of pace.

Closing Comments from Carol

Enjoy the recipes!

Do you have any recipes that you would like to share? I’d love to try and share them with everyone. You can post your recipes on the 30 Day Gourmet Facebook® fan page or click here to send me an email. Or do you have any other topics that you would like me to cover? Click here to send me an email. I enjoy hearing from you!

Have fun in your kitchen!


Carol Santee

Carol is the co-author of the Big Book of Freezer Cooking and the author of 30 Day Gourmet’s Slow Cooker Freezer Favorites, Freezer Lunches To Go and Healthy Freezer Cooking eBooks. She is a computer information specialist and works for a computer software company.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.