Teaching to Learn and Learning to Teach

Orange Creamsicle Cookies
February 21, 2012, 8:03 am
Filed under: Cooking, Cool Finds, FUN!, recipes, These are a few of my favorite things..., tmc, work

I think these could be a new fave! They will be right at home in Sweazy where we love everything orange. I even had one for breakfast :).

Orange Creamsicle Cookies
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 firmly packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons orange zest 2 cups white chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla until smooth. Gradually add flour mixture until combined. Stir in orange zest and chips.

Drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Do not flatten cookies; it will make them dry. Bake 8 – 10 minutes or until golden brown around edges. Do not over cook! Cookies will be plump. Cool for several minutes on cookie sheets before transferring to rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container.

Sweet Potato Stew
February 10, 2012, 10:21 pm
Filed under: Community, Cooking, Friends, FUN!, recipes, work

My coworkers and I have a little lunch club going on. It’s actually the female RD meeting, but we take turns cooking for each other. It gives us a chance to try out recipes that we wouldn’t necessarily be willing to try on just anyone. This week I hosted and I got a keeper. Here is my version of Real Simple’s Sweet Potato Chowder.


  • 1/2 pound turkey bacon
  • 1 whole orange, yellow, or red pepper
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3 13-ounce cans chicken broth
  • 3 mild green chilies
  • 1 cup of frozen corn or half a bag
  • salt to taste


  1. Cook the bacon in a large stockpot over medium heat until it begins to crisp, 6 to 8 minutes.
  2. Add the peppers and onion to the bacon and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Because I used turkey bacon, I also needed to add a little olive oil at this stage.
  3. Add the sweet potatoes, chicken broth, and chilies and simmer, covered, 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Stir in the corn and ½ teaspoon salt and cook until heated through.

I served this with ham, apple, and white cheddar mini-paninis. We had home-made peach fro-yo for dessert. The blueberry fro-yo was a flop :(.

Out of Eggs?
February 6, 2012, 8:00 pm
Filed under: Cooking, Cool Finds, Family, Quirky

Last week, I had just returned from the store, had just started making butter horns, and had guests coming in an hour, when I realized I only had one egg and the recipe had called for 3. Yikes! What’s a girl to do? When I text-messaged one of my neighbors and didn’t hear back right away, I called my mom.

Jenn: Mom remember that stuff you gave me that you can substitute for eggs?

Mom: Yes.

Jenn: What do I do with it?

Mom: Dissolve 1 Tb. in 3 Tb of water for each egg.

Jenn: Thanks. What’s it called?

Mom: Flax meal.

Jenn: You are the best. Thanks, Mom

It worked! I’ve had it in coffee cake before, but it worked in my rolls. They were speckled, but they were delish and nutrish :). Just thought I would share this info. Flax meal lasts in the fridge forever, so it’s nice to have a little on hand for when you are baking and out of eggs.

Back in the Kitchen

It’s been nice to be cooking again. I haven’t been gourmet; the meals have been simple. Instead of practicing entertaining, I’ve been practicing hospitality and you know what I don’t think anyone has noticed. It could, however, be a phenomenon of being around people who regularly eat caf food and think that anything homemade is spectacular or magical. Tonight, this is what was on the menu. I am going to use this again in the future. Simple but delicious.

Chipotle’s Basmati Rice Recipe

Here’s the recipe with some changes I made:

1 teaspoon butter   2 Tbs. fresh cilantro 1 cup white basmati rice   1 1/3 cup water 1/2 teaspoon salt   1 Lime
In a 2-quart heavy saucepan, heat butter over low heat, stirring occasionally until melted. Add rice and lime juice, stir for 1 minute. Add water and salt, bring to a full rolling boil. At boiling, cover, turn down to simmer over low heat until rice is tender and the water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork.

Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken

  • 2 chicken breast frozen
  • 14.4 oz can diced tomatoes with mild green chilies
  • 15 oz can black beans
  • 8 oz frozen corn
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 14.4 oz can fat free chicken broth
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste). I had to use 1/2 tsp of chili powder because I didn’t have cayenne on hand and because I didn’t know how my guests liked spice.
  • salt to taste
Combine chicken broth, beans, corn, tomatoes, cilantro, scallions, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt in the crock pot.
Season chicken breast with salt and lay on top.
Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours.
Half hour before serving, remove chicken and shred.
Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in. Adjust salt and seasoning.

Fall Fest

Apple Cinnamon Chai Trifle (Too Sweet)

Frosted Banana Bars (A Personal Fave)

Pub Mix (from Costco)

Apple Nachos (because I like all things nachos :) ) – basically caramel apples, but cut up with all sorts of fixings on top like caramel, chocolate chips, pecans, etc.

Carmel Pecan Pretzel Bites (Best of Show and they are a great gluten-free treat if you make them with gluten-free pretzels.)

HT: glorioustreats.blogspot.com

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies: Mix one yellow cake mix, one white cake mix, one 29oz can of pumpkin, 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice, and chocolate chips as you please. Enjoy for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

Image from glorioustreats.blogspot.com.

Brown bag flowers, one of many decorative touches:

HT: aplaceforusblog.com


My Last Day

My "Trainer's Chair" waiting on me for my Last Day

I made the Deans' List :). This made my day. A good end to three good years. Here's to 3 more!

Eating Paninis at My Place

Fun Guests

Pipe Cleaners = Hours of Entertainment

I need to remember to take more pictures. I’m documenting less, when I need to be documenting more :). Hope to post about my birthday soon.

Life it is a changing
July 23, 2011, 12:44 am
Filed under: Community, Cooking, Cool Finds, Friends, FUN!, My life


No one should be allowed to purchase this much sugar. They regulate spray paint and even the quantity of cold medicine you are able to buy while allowing you to purchase enough sugar to go into a diabetic coma. Lets’s hope someone is moving in with 88 college students and found brownie and cake mixes on sale :).