Tag Archives: homemade

Healthy? Chyea Right.

26 Oct

In an attempt to eat more healthy and spend less money, I made homemade granola.  Granola is one of those things that’s expensive to buy and misleadingly unhealthy.  There’s always tons of sugar in it and the price is ridiculously marked up.

I love eating granola with my greek yogurt every morning, so I came up with the recipe below and toasted up some oats.  I got the general granola guidelines from here.  I doubled the recipe because I knew that Normalicious would eat a lot since he likes granola as well.  He doesn’t like raisins so I omitted fruit.  Granola with only toasted oats just didn’t sound appealing to me so I added slivered almonds.

Kitchen Mischiefs’s Homemade Kind of Healthy Granola (this is a doubled recipe)

Ingredients:
4 cups old-fashioned oats
4 tbs dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cup slivered almonds (optional)
1/2 cup honey (you can use maple syrup)
6 tbs vegetable
2 tsp vanilla (I added the vanilla because you can never go wrong with vanilla!)
1 tb. water
 
Directions: 
1)  Preheat oven to 275 degrees and coat a 9-by-13-inch pan or Pyrex with cooking spray.
2)  Mix oats, brown sugar, salt and almonds together in a bowl.
3)  Bring honey, oil, vanilla, and water and any other flavoring you use to a simmer in a saucepan over low heat. Drizzle over oat mixture and stir.
4)  Pour the stirred oats onto prepared pan. Working a handful at a time, squeeze oats to form small clumps.
5)  Bake for 30 minutes.  Check on the granola.  If it’s not golden brown, bake for 15 more minutes.
Let cool.
6)  The guidelines I got in that link above says “Granola can be stored in an airtight tin for up to two weeks.”   I found this to be untrue.  It’ll last for about one week in an airtight container.  Afterwards, the taste and quality isn’t quite the same.  Best eaten when fresh.

The reason you see cookies in this picture, hahaah, is because, as I mentioned in the previous post, I have a weakness for cookies.  Even though we were trying to be healthy, I still caved and ended up making chocolate chip cookies.  I LOVE me some good chocolate chip cookies.  This is one of my favorite recipes from Bakerella.  Funny thing, I ran out of regular sugar so I ended up using about 1/4 cup of sugar instead of half a cup, and added an extra 1/4 cup of brown sugar to the mix.  I think it made it even better since the brown sugar carmelizes better and makes cookies crispy!  I love crispy cookies!

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Once Upon a Dream…..

17 Oct

Continuing on with the Disney theme….

In June, I went to Disneyland with two friends.  One friend was getting married the following month and to memorialize our awesome Disney trip and to give her something completely original as a wedding gift, I decided to make her a Disney themed shadow box where she can store her pins.

I wanted to make the shadow box in the shape of Sleeping Beauty’s castle since it’s an iconic image in both Disney parks and Disney films, and Sleeping Beauty is my favorite classic Disney movie.

Here’s how it came out.

Here’s how I made it.

  1. First, I scoured the internet and found an image of the castle that I liked that didn’t have too many details to make it easy to cut out.
  2. I enlarged the image and printed it out.  I used paring knives and a cutting board (hahaha, I know, ghetto right) to cut out the image because I don’t own an exacto knife and cutting mat.
  3. Using a pencil, I then, lightly traced the image I cut out onto the back of a cardstock piece of scrapbook paper.  I used painters tape to hold down the cutout to keep the paper from shifting.
  4. I cut out the image I traced on the scrapbook paper (again using a paring knife and cutting board) and turned the scrapbook paper over to see if the image looked liked it was cut out neatly.
  5. On the back of the cardstock scrapbook paper, I placed small sticky magnets on all four corners.
  6. On a separate sheet of scrapbook paper (in a different color or pattern), with the paper facing up, I placed the mates to the magnets on each corner to match with the magnets on the cardstock paper.
  7. Then I put the two pieces of paper together and let the magnets magnetize (I guess that’s what you call it) and placed the two layered sheets of scrapbook paper into a frame the same size.  And voila!  There you have it!  you’re very own homemade shadow box!

Soup’s On.

2 Jul

The other day, I decided I really wanted some homemade soup so I took a half eaten rotisserie chicken from Costco, ripped off good pieces of meat and saved it for a salad topper.  Then took the carcass to make some chicken stock.

For chicken stock, I always use the same ingredients: onions, garlic, the inner parts of celery (with leaves), and salt & pepper to taste.  I leave this and the carcass to simmer slowly for at least an hour.  I don’t really like chicken skin, but I leave it on while the chicken is simmering to get good flavor out of the skin, then I take out the carcass and pull of whatever meat was left on.

My grandmother used to make this particular soup for me.  It’s ingredients are like a minestrone but without pasta and beans and it tastes completely different.  It doesn’t really have a name,  but I distinctly remember the flavor.  Since I’ve been dating the boyfriend I started to cook more often and would make him soup when he’s sick or on cold days.  But he’s really particular about soups.  Norman doesn’t like soupy soups. (I know, weird right?) He likes thick, almost like stew soups.  So, I taken her rendition of the soup, and bulked it up a bit.  Given the fact that I don’t have the recipe from my grandmother (I don’t know why I never bothered to ask), I think I duplicated her soup fairly well.

Here’s how to make this soup.  Let’s call it “Bachan’s Bulked Chicken Tomato Soup.”  (Bachan means grandmother in Japanese).

Ingredients:
Homemade chicken stock (with chicken pieces)
2 large, thick carrots, cut about 1/2 thick
1 Celery (use only the inner heart parts, about 4-5 stalks)
5 yellow potatoes, cut about 1″ thick
green beans (optional)
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp italian seasoning
3-4 bay leaves (I used leaves from my mom’s friends tree so they’re a little smaller)
salt
pepper
1 can of italian seasoned crushed tomatoes
 
Instructions:
From the pot where you made stock in, remove the carcass and place in a bowl to cool.
Add carrots and potatoes, wait for those to cook almost completely through, then add celery and green beans.  (If I’m pressed for time, I’ll precook the potatoes and carrots in the microwave before adding them to the soup).
While the veggies are cooking in the stock, take the carcass and remove all of the meat from it.  Add the meat to the soup.
Lastly, add all your spices except for the salt & pepper.
Add the canned tomatoes.  Mix it around and let the flavors marry.  Then taste and add salt & pepper if you feel it’s needed.
 

This time round when I made it, I didn’t add the canned tomatoes and it still came out delicious but it almost felt like a completely different soup.  Oh, and blueberry beer goes very well with it. (^.-)

If I don’t have homemade chicken stock or a chicken carcass on hand, I’ll use store-bought stock and add 2-3 chicken thighs.  Slow cook the thighs in the pot of stock and water, then set aside to peel the meat off while the veggies are cooking, just like above.

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