Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Lunch: 2.1.12

The Girl's snack for Wednesday is mandarin oranges and a hard boiled egg.

Her lunch is and apricot, a plum, some blueberries, roasted cauliflower popcorn, and pinwheels on whole wheat of rotisserie chicken and cheddar.

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Lunch for The Boy: 2.1.12

Mandarin oranges: 15g, egg: 0g
The Boy's snack for Wednesday is mandarin oranges and a hard boiled egg.
Strawberries: 6g, watermelon: 4g, cauliflower: 7g, pinwheels: 20g
His lunch is some watermelon, strawberries, roasted cauliflower popcorn, and pinwheels on whole wheat of rotisserie chicken and cheddar.

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Monday, January 30, 2012

Lunch: 1.31.12

The Girl's snack is apple slices with biscoff spread.

Her lunch is a wrap with ham and cheddar on a whole wheat tortilla, pale green roasted cauliflower "popcorn," strawberries with kiwi, some blueberries, and an apricot.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.31.12

After much searching through local stores, I finally found Biscoff spread!  Several of my fellow blogger friends have been waxing poetic about it, and I tried the cookies recently and loved them... so I was thrilled to find it!
Apple slices: 8g, Biscoff: 8g

The Boy's snack is some apple slices with biscoff spread.
Cauliflower: 6g, mandarin oranges: 15g, watermelon: 4g, raviolis: 25g
His lunch is some heart shaped raviolis from Costco, roasted orange cauliflower popcorn, watermelon, and mandarin oranges.

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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Lunch: 1.30.12

The Girl's snack for Monday is a clementine, and a couple graham crackers with this cool strawberries & cream spread (nut free, though "on shared equipment" - my kids are not allergic, but I know that some of my readers have allergic kids...) I found at Price Chopper.  It's yummy.

Her lunch is kiwi with blueberries, an apricot, a rotisserie chicken sandwich on whole wheat bread (I need to make a loaf of bread!), a babybell, and some popcorn.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.30.12

Egg: 0g, Biscoff: 12g, watermelon: 5g
Happy Monday!  The Boy's Monday snack is a hard boiled egg (leaving it in the container because he said out of the container can get yucky), watermelon, and a couple Biscoff cookies (still can't find the spread - but I'm working on it).
Popcorn: 2.5g, raviolis: 25g, mandarin oranges: 20g, strawberries: 6g
His lunch is strawberries, mandarin oranges, popcorn, and some super cool heart shaped raviolis that I found at Costco - I think Bentobloggy had them last year, and I couldn't find them then.  So happy to have them this year!  :)

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Recipe: Red Velvet Angel Food Cake

For my mother's birthday, I decided to make her an angel food cake.  I tried a homemade angel food cake a couple years ago, and it was a pain and didn't end up well... but this is the year that I've tackled pie crust.  My baking chops are significantly more choppy nowadays.  So, I thought I'd give it another try.

My mother is a chocolate lover.  I wanted to use the Red Velvet Baker's Emulsion from King Arthur Flour.  So, how about Red Velvet Angel Food Cake?

Red Velvet Angel Food Cake

1 1/2 c sugar, divided
1 c cake flour
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 Tbsp espresso powder
1 1/2 c egg whites (I used the pasteurized egg whites in a carton, this would take 10-12 egg whites)
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp Red Velvet Baking Emulsion (or red food coloring gel)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon extract
1/4 c warm water

Preheat oven to 325 F.   In a small bowl, whisk together the cocoa, 3/4 c sugar, espresso powder, and the cake flour.

Beat egg whites until frothy, then add cream of tartar and salt. When those are well incorporated, add in the other 3/4 c sugar slowly.  Once it has all been added, beat the mixture to soft peaks.  Add the warm water, vanilla, Red Velvet Baking emuslion and lemon extract and beat for a few seconds to evenly distribute.

Sift the flour/sugar/cocoa powder mixture over the egg whites in 6-8 additions and gently fold it in after each addition. Take your time and do it gently to avoid deflating the egg whites.
Spoon or pour batter into an to an ungreased spring form or 9 inch tube pan with a removable bottom (Mine does not have a removable bottom.  I wish it did.  The cake sticks a little and doesn't come out nearly as nicely as it could).  Smooth the top with a spatula.

Bake for 45-50 minutes until the top springs back when lightly pressed.  Remove from oven and immediately invert onto the top of a wine bottle  (or, in my case, invert on a rack because the cake is not over the sides of the pan and my pan's hole is too small for my wine bottle....) until completely cool, about 1 1/2 hours.  Run a knife around the sides (and around the middle tube, too!) and carefully invert the cake pan onto your serving plate until the cake releases from the pan.  Serve with whipped cream and fruit, if desired.

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Lunch: 1.27.12

The Girl's snack for Friday is a clementine and some somersault snacks.

Her lunch is strawberries and blueberries, pear slices, grapes, crackers, cheese, and ham.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.27.12

Crackers: 9g, raisins: 16g, turkey: 1g

The Boy's snack for Friday is some crackers, a piece of turkey, and some raisins.
Strawberries: 6g, mandarin oranges: 15g, banana: 25g, salami: 0g, pierogies: 33g
His lunch is strawberries, mandarin oranges, a banana, salami, and some pierogies.

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Recipe: Boursin Scalloped Cabbage

My kids have liked cabbage in the past.  When I let the kids each pick out a veggie that we don't eat often at the store, The Girl picked cabbage.  In the past, I've made Braised Red Cabbage with Onions and some Reuben Pasta, and both were delicious... but I wanted to try something different.
Scalloped Cabbage with pierogies and kielbasa

Enter Bousin Scalloped Cabbage!  It was a total success.  The kids loved it.  We had it with pan fried pierogies with onions, and some kielbasa.  Mmmmmmmm.....

Boursin Scalloped Cabbage

1 head cabbage
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp flour
1 c milk
1 pkg. boursin cheese (I used garlic and herb flavor)
1/2 c panko bread crumbs
Big pot of boiling cabbage
Preheat oven to 350 F.  Cut the cabbage up into small wedges and boil in a large pot of water for about 10 minutes, until tender.  Drain.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a sauce pan, and stir in flour.  Add in the milk and cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring frequently.  Whisk in the Boursin until smooth.  Place the cabbage in a 2 qt casserole dish and pour the sauce over it.  Sprinkle the bread crumbs on top evenly and bake for ~20 minutes.  Enjoy!
Cheesy saucy yumminess

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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Lunch: 1.26.12

Snack for The Girl for Thursday is a plum and some Somersault snacks.

Lunch is strawberries, a clementine, a banana, crackers, turkey, and cheese..

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.26.12

Grapes: 10g, raisins: 8g, cauliflower with feta: 5g
Snack for The Boy for Thursday is some raisins, grapes, and the last of our current batch of roasted cauliflower "popcorn" with feta.
Strawberries: 6g, pear: 10g, banana: 25g, crackers: 18g, salami: 2g, cheese: 1g
His lunch is a banana, strawberries, slices of pear, crackers, cheese, and salami.

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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Lunch: 1.25.12

Snack for The Girl is some pear slices, and some crackers.

Her lunch is some mango cubes (new for her), strawberries, grapes, a plum, a ham and cheese sandwich (cut with a Lunch Punch), and the last of the plantain chips.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.25.12

I went out to get some produce tonight, so there are some more choices for the kiddos, and therefore the lunches and snacks are pretty fruit heavy.  They got a bit excited.  ;)
Raisins (not pictured - 16g), apple slices: 6g, egg: 0g

Snack for The Boy is some apple slices, a hard boiled egg, and some raisins (the raisins are not pictured).
Strawberries: 4g, grapes: 5g, mango cubes: 7g, apple: 6g, dumplings: 15g

Lunch is some sliced grapes (they didn't slice as well as they did on my first try with my strawberry slicer... but I think he'll like him because they are different), strawberries, some mango (this is new for him... we'll see if he likes them), and some dumplings.

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Recipe: Triple Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

I got an email from The Hubby today that said "Best Day EVER!" with a link to a story declaring that today was National Peanut Butter Day.  I know that peanut and other nut allergies abound, so these will not be going to school with the kiddos (even though their schools are not peanut free, I choose not to send nut items to school as a general rule...) but they are delicious in our allergy-free home.

Triple Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2 c butter, softened
1 c smooth peanut butter at room temperature
3/4 c sugar
1/2 c firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 egg
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/4 c flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 c coarsely chopped peanuts
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/4 c semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 c dark chocolate chips (or milk chocolate chips, if you can't find dark)

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Beat together the peanut butter and butter until fluffy.  Cream in the sugar.  Stir in the egg, milk, and vanilla.  Slowly add the flour and the baking soda.  Fold in the peanuts and chocolate chips.
Mmmm, chunks!
Scoop onto parchment lined baking sheets with a small cookie scoop, about an inch apart.  Press each cookie with a fork to flatten (and leave that tell-tale peanut butter cookie design).  Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Let cool 1-2 minutes on the cookie sheet and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.  Enjoy (preferably with a tall glass of milk!)

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Monday, January 23, 2012

Lunch: 1.24.12

The Girl's snack is apple slices, cheese & turkey, and some crackers.

Her lunch is some leftover take-out chicken teriyaki, strawberries, grapes, plantain chips, and a hard boiled egg.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.24.12

We got Chinese take-out in honor of Chinese New Year yesterday, so there are some leftovers in lunches today... I know that chicken fingers aren't the healthiest thing in the world, but for a special occasion, I thought it was a nice addition to The Boy's pile of dumplings...
Apple slices: 6g, salami & cheese: 0g, crackers: 9g
His snack is some apple slices, salami and a little cheese, and a couple crackers.
Strawberries: 9g, grapes: 9g, chicken fingers: 28g, sauce: 2g, egg: 0g
His lunch is Chinese chicken fingers with some sweet & sour sauce, strawberries, grapes, and a hard boiled egg.

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Lunch: 1.23.12

Snack is cheese & crackers and a plum.

Lunch is some parmesan bread bites from Domino's with Marinara, a hard boiled egg, a kiwi, grapes, strawberries, some strawberry fruit dip, and some peppermint pretzels.

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Lunch for The Boy: 1.23.12

Applesauce: 13g, Cauliflower & feta: 6g
The Boy's snack is some roasted cauliflower "popcorn" with feta cheese in it, along with some applesauce.
Crackers: 9g, cheese & salami skewers: 1g, parm bread bites: 23g, sauce: 3g, egg: 0g, strawberries: 6g, grapes: 9g, strawberry fruit dip: 3g, peppermint pretzels: 9g

His lunch is some crackers, salami and cheddar on skewers, a hard boiled egg, parmesan bites from Domino's, with some marinara dipping sauce, strawberries and grapes with some fruit dip from my party this weekend (it's essentially no bake strawberry cheesecake filling), and a couple peppermint pretzels.

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Recipe: Raspberry Nutella Thumbprint Cookies

Cake mix cookies are fun and easy!  These were a winner.  The Hubby doesn't like nutella, so I made some of these with just raspberry jelly, too.  You could also do it with other cake mix flavors - although the French Vanilla was wonderful.

Raspberry Nutella Thumbprint Cookies

1 box cake mix (I used French Vanilla)
1/3 c butter, softened
1 egg
1/4 c water

Raspberry jelly

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Combine cake mix, butter, egg, and water.  Scoop dough onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and immediately press your thumb into each cookie to make an indentation.  Cool on a wire rack.

Fill each indentation with a little nutella and a dollop of raspberry jelly.  Enjoy!

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Recipe: Tortellini Skewers

Another recipe from my post-Holiday party, which is, like the Greek Skewers, more of a technique than a recipe, but it's one worth sharing!  I made some of them with hard salami, and some without, for the vegetarian in my crowd of friends.  This would also be wonderful in lunches! (There was a lot of tortellini leftover from this recipe, so  - Bonus lunch!  It would be great mixed with some grape tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and mozzarella for a pasta salad...)

Tortellini Skewers

1 small package tortellini (tri-color is nice), cooked and drained
1 bottle Italian dressing
small Mozzarella balls
grape tomatoes (I used yellow and red)
fresh basil leaves
1/2 lb hard salami, cubed (optional)

After the tortellini is cooked, marinate it in the dressing for at least a couple hours up to overnight.  Cut the mozzarella balls in half.  Thread the ingredients on toothpicks or sandwich skewers and enjoy!

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Recipe: Greek Skewers

I made these for my Annual Post Holiday party, and they were super easy and fun.  They would be great in lunches (if your kid likes kalmata olives!  Mine are not convinced.  The Boy tried to eat the feta off from all of them...)  More of an idea than a recipe, but here you go!

Greek Skewers

Pitted Kalmata olives
small cucumber
cubed feta cheese (or a small block of feta, cubed)

Place ingredients on small skewers or toothpicks, with the feta on the bottom, so that they can stand flat.  I used a channel knife to cut designs into the side of the cucumber before slicing it to make it prettier.

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Recipe: Knish

When I was in New York City, I had a knish in Grand Central Station.  The one I had was filled with a spinach potato mixture.  I decided to make some myself, but used another traditional filling, with just potato and onion.

I'll be making these again, and playing with the fillings some more!  Some of my friends thought that it would have been improved by some meat.  I liked them as is.  But, there's room for experimentation for sure!
The knish I had in Grand Central Station (terrible picture, but you get the idea!)

I used store bought puff pastry for the dough.  You could make your own, but I think they were lovely with the puff pastry.

Potato and Onion Knish

2 Tbsp oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 tsp garlic powder (to taste)
1 tsp sugar
salt & pepper to taste
1 egg
1 box puff pastry (thawed)

In a large pot, boil the potatoes until soft.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan and cook the onions over medium heat, and cook until browned and soft.

When the potatoes are cooked through, drain and press through a potato ricer into the pan.  (You could mash them with a spoon or a masher into the pan, but the ricer makes them fluffier and is very easy).   Stir the potato and the onion together in the pan and add in sugar and spices to taste.  Stir in egg.

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Lay the thawed puff pastry out on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Spread the filling out in a log about 1" from one side of the puff pastry.  Roll up tightly, like a cinnamon roll.

With seam side down, cut the roll into about 1" sections.  Put the slices about 1" apart from each other on the baking sheet, pulling the pastry up at the top a bit, gathering it together and then pressing down to form an indentation.

Bake for about 35 minutes, or until nicely browned.  Enjoy (warm is better, but room temp is also delicious.)

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