Monthly Archives: March 2014

Pulled Chicken Dinner!

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Pulled Chicken Dinner!

I read somewhere (yeah, probably Pinterest…) that you could make pulled chicken the same way as pulled pork. Since I haven’t been able to find any pork tenderloin at the grocery store, I thought I would try it out today.
Really tough recipe here folks… I put a bottle of Kraft bbq sauce and five chicken breasts in the crock pot at lunch….

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And, by dinner, it was cooked! I used a couple forks to pull the chicken apart.

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Then, I put the shredded chicken back into the crock pot and cooked for about 15 to 20 minutes more, and tada! (It’s too bad that it doesn’t look as good as it tastes!)

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We had it on a bun with a salad for dinner. It was so easy and better yet, everyone loved it! Five chicken breasts made enough for about six sandwiches, plus we have enough leftovers for lunch one day next week! Now, that’s my kind of meal! I think I would even serve this when friends come for dinner. I would probably buy a more expensive BBQ sauce, and splurge for some nice fresh buns, but it would make a great summer meal…or even camping ! Every time I use my crock pot, I keep asking myself why I don’t use it every night. There is nothing better than coming home to a house that smells like dinner already cooked!!

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Orange Soup

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Orange Soup

When the kids were little, my mom used to make this soup, and we really enjoyed it. Whenever we went to her house she used to make us “Orange soup” and pizza. Now whenever we have that for lunch, we call it, “Granny Lunch”. (consider that a compliment mom!) She named it Orange soup for obvious reasons, it gets its orange colour from sweet potatoes, and carrots. I am not sure if this her exact recipe, but this is my version of it. The recipe is so simple, and only three ingredients. The only part that actually takes a few minutes is cutting and peeling the carrots and sweet potatoes. But, if you have great kitchen staff, like I do, you can have them cut for you by the time you are out of the shower (thanks honey!)

Start by cutting up sweet potatoes and carrots

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Put the carrots and sweet potato cubes in the crock pot and fill with chicken soup stock. I didn’t measure the amount, but I made sure the chicken stock covered everything.

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We went out skiing and left the soup in the crock pot to cook for the morning. I forgot to take a picture of when it was cooked, when we got home, I guess we were too hungry to stop to take a picture! But, by the time we got home, everything was well cooked, not crunchy, which made it much easier to puree. I used a blender stick to puree it, and I puree it right in the crock pot. Why dirty another pot or bowl, right?

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I let it cook for a few minutes more, and added a little greek seasoning and some dill flakes to add a little flavour. It was pretty thick, so I decided to thin it down by adding a little milk.
Here is what it looked like thicker…

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And thinned out a little… both tasted good, but depends on your personal preference.

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It was the perfect lunch after a morning of skiing! Enjoy!

How to clean your dishwasher

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How to clean your dishwasher

A couple of weeks ago, because our dishwasher was doing such a horrible job, we would rinse all of our dishes before putting them in our dishwasher, then we were having to rewash half of them because they came out of the dishwasher with a filmy sort of coating. gross.
So, I was at the point where I was looking through the flyers for new dishwashers, and seriously considering buying a new one.
As a last ditch effort, John and I thought we would see if we could give it a good clean, and it is like we have a new dishwasher! Like everything else I do in life these days, the first thing I do when I am thinking about doing something is look it up on Pinterest.
Pinterest said to use vinegar.
We started by taking off all of the parts on the inside of the dishwasher that could snap or screw off.

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We washed, soaked and rinsed all of the parts the best we could with vinegar and water. And, I sprayed and washed the inside of the dishwasher with vinegar.

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I also washed out and filled the detergent cups with vinegar.

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Then, the trick I found on Pinterest is to put a glass filled with vinegar in the center of the dishwasher, and run it through a cycle. So, that is exactly what we did.

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The idea is that the cup of vinegar gets filled with water from the dishwasher and overflows the vinegar, so the vinegar is added gradually throughout the cycle, and gets into all of the pipes and nozzles.
It worked amazing! I can’t believe the difference between the before and after. Our dishes are actually coming out of the dishwasher clean and shiny now! We were almost ready to buy a new dishwasher, but a couple cups of vinegar was all it needed.
So, every couple weeks from now on, I am going to spray down the dishwasher with vinegar and add a cup to a cycle. The great part is because vinegar is non-toxic, I will just add the cup to a regular load of dishes, no need for the dishwasher to be empty, right?

White Chocolate Raspberry Fudge

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I have made this fudge recipe before, but a couple weeks ago, for Valentine’s day, I decided to make a slight variation using white chocolate.
You need three ingredients:
2 cups of chocolate, 1 can of eaglebrand sweetened condensed milk, 2 tablespoons of butter

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Start by pouring the whole can of eaglebrand into double broiler and mix in chocolate. As you can see, my double broiler is a pyrex bowl that fits on top of one of my pots.
Be sure to stir constantly, as the chocolate on the bottom will melt faster.

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Stir until everything has melted, and the fudge has a shiny look.

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Then, just because I was feeling a little adventureous, I decided to add a little raspberry flavour. I used the candy flavouring you can buy in Bulk Barn.

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Then, you have to work quickly before the fudge hardens, and pour it into the pan. I lined the pan with parchment paper. I have learned the hard way that the fudge doesn’t always come out of the pan easily.

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As you can see, because the pan I used was a little too big, I wedged in a container to make it a little smaller.

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Then, put it into the fridge and let it harden for a couple hours. Once it has hardened, lift it out of the pan using the parchment paper.

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Then cut it into squares. I tend to cut the squares into smaller squares. I like it when you can eat a smaller piece all in one bite, that way you don’t have to deal with melted chocolate and sticky fingers. And… You can eat twice as many without feeling guilty…lol.

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The raspberry flavour tasted pretty good. I would try another flavour. I would also love to try using orange chocolate!
Anyways, enjoy!

Oscar Worthy Center Pieces

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Oscar Worthy Center Pieces

For those of you who don’t know me, in my other life from 9 to 3:30, I am a librarian and teacher. Every mont in my library, I like to decorate a different theme. It’s a good excuse for me to avoid doing work, because whenever I have the most work to do, my library will look amazing! I can always put off doing real work, to make some craft projects and decorating!
This month in the library, I thought I would try something new, so the theme in March is going to be……(imagine a drumroll here)…. The book is better! So I am going to decorate with a movie theme and tie in books that have been made into movies.
As part of my decorations, I always make centre pieces for the tables. So here is my idea for this month. The key to any idea I have is that is has to be cheap, as I obviously can’t spend school money on decorations, so I spend a lot of time digging around the basement and dollar store.
I started with plastic popcorn containers from the dollar store…

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And, I found these decorations in the dollarstore too….

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I was going to fill the popcorn containers with real popcorn, but then I started thinking about the kids and how it would be sitting out for a month, and I would have to tell kids not to eat it all month, so I decided to make some fake popcorn. I dug up some white and yellow tissue paper. If you can find a light yellow and a darker yellow, this will make a more realistic popcorn.

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I cut up the tissue paper into squares, I found 2-3 inch squares are best.

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Here is the fun part. Scrunch up each square and roll it in the palm of your hand…

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In the popcorn containers, I stuffed the bottoms with paper.

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Then to hold the center accents (don’t know what else to call them) in place, I scrunched up another sheet of paper and wrapped it around…

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Then filled it with fake popcorn and spread out the centers…tada…

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Now, if only I can find a way for the kids to not touch so I won’t be picking up balls of tissue papers off the floor all month….