Two Peas, Friends and Enchanted Apples

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I miss summer it has been one heck of a winter in Ohio….not that I am complaining but it made me want to blog about summer! So here it is (-:  

For the last two years my friend Jennifer has invited us to apple pick with her family at Fruit-Full Acres in Marysville, OH.  The girls and I love it here the owners Beckie and Thomas Congrove are always so helpful and so kid friendly.

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Their trees are pruned as such that little hands can pick the apples easily, this is why Jen always goes here not to mention the apples are the best! 

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They encourage you to try the apples just make sure you dispose of them properly  in buckets they have at the end of every row of trees to keep down the bees! 

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These two may have filled a bucket themselves EEK 

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While our littlest pickers enjoyed that part WAY too much our oldest girls were helping the Moms find just the right ones to make all things apple when we got home!

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Pyper had plans BIG apple plans she loves to cook and bake so this was pretty cool for her to get her own ingredients.

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What a lucky boy with all those girls around LOL!  SO off we went home first up would be apple pie filling YUM! 

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We took buckets in the car and transferred our bushel bags into them so they wouldn’t bounce all over the car. Easier to clean too! 

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We cut the apples, and filled the jars 

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then started the process  I looked at over 30 recipes all different so I decided to take from each and do my own…..

I used approx 8-9 pounds of apples we mixed Jonathan and MacIntosh about 40 medium sized (some were eaten as they were cut gotta love those little peas) 
I did not boil them half the recipes showed to boil half didn’t I like simple so I DID NOT boil the apples.

I ended up with 7 Quart jars full 

For the syrup (or whatever they call it LOL) this is where I got creative…

 9½ cups water; 4½ cups sugar; 1 cup cornstarch (most call for Clear Jel I admit they were out at the store so I had to do the starch I hear Clear Jel is a lot better!);  1 teaspoon salt; 1 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon;  ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg;  3 tablespoons lemon juice and here is what NO one had and I understand its because we added most on the spices individually but I added MORE ….

 

I love it it’s right next to the pumpkin pie spice and I had to try it….later I looked on Pinterest and saw where you can make your own and I will this year!

Put all the filling ingredients together in a large pot and simmer until thick 

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Once it has thickened you pour the mixture into the jars to the top if you have a funnel that will make it easier and less messy then place the lids on….make sure the sides are clear of any of the mixture or they may not seal correctly.

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Once the jars are filled start the canning process (that guy in the back was looking up the apple butter recipe!) 

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Since I do not have a canner, I simply get the largest pot I own and fill with water making sure at least two inches of the jars are immersed.  Bring to boil for at least 20-30 minutes you may or may not hear the tops pop.  Once the time is over wipe the jars clean they will be hot! place on a towel overnight you may hear the popping once they start to cool down.  Leave over night to cool down properly and if they “popped” you can store up to a year in a cool dry spot.

Next we made Apple Butter and Apple Sauce (more on that in the next post)  ….. this years apple recipes turned out amazing! I was so happy with the result we are currently down to 4 apple pie fillings from this first batch we ended up making about 14 jars, gave some away and ate some too! 

Teddy Bear Snacks by Two Peas

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The oldest pea became a Brownie Girl Scout this year and when she was picked to bring the snack for one of the meetings she wanted to make it herself no store bought treats from her no way! So she grabbed her Silly Snacks Cookbook and found a recipe for the Teddy Bear Snack Mix and from there she made her own rendition.

First she added Golden Grahams -

 The Teddy Grahams not one but two kinds of Teddy Grahams -

We needed two bowls because we have a lot of girls in out Troop (-:

Then chocolate chips -

LOTS of chocolate chips!

And pretzels the recipe called for potato sticks but we looked everywhere and couldn’t find them so we switched it up.

Then mix it all up!   (with CLEAN hands of course!)

Your hands may get a little messy

Doesn’t it look good?

She was so proud and did it all herself she even put it in the little individual containers for the girls.  Now shouldn’t there be a badge for that??

Now comes the youngest pea she wanted to make her own treats for Valentine’s Day so what better than the Teddy Bear Snack Mix?? and yes she did it ALL by herself.

A while ago Dad of 2 Peas bought a huge container of cheeseballs I kept the container for scraps of ribbon but hadn’t used it yet.  I pulled it out for Phoebe to make her mix it was perfect for her!

So again we used Golden Grahams ……

Teddy Grahams…….

She wanted to add marshmallows! …….

Lots of marshmallows!!!

We found the potato sticks ……

We used tiny cjocolate chips for tiny hands …….

Added more of EVERYTHING to fill to container……

And shook it up up to mix it now she was the proud pea and I am one proud Mommy !

So to sum it up here are each of the peas versions of the Teddy Bear Snack Mix :

Pyper:                                                            Phoebe:                                                  Golden Grahams                                           Golden Grahams                                        Teddy Grahams 2 kinds                                Teddy Grahams                                 Chocolate Chips                                            Mini Chocolate Chips                          Pretzels                                                         Potato Sticks                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               and then Phoebe had to out do her sisters mix and added the Mini Marshmallows~! 

Go ahead and let your littles make thier own version of the Teddy Bear Snack Mix they will be so proud to do it all themselves (-:

It’s that time of year again! Reindeer Chow

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Reindeer Chow

“originally posted 2010″

 Every year I make this delicious concoction for my co-workers and friends.  Over the years we have made some slight versions as my husband doesn’t quite care for milk chocolate….I know who doesn’t like chocolate ??? that would be Chad (-:

So here is the recipe follow along with the pics too!

 The ingredients :

5 cups of Corn Chex

5 cups of Cheerios

8 ounces of salted/or unsalted peanuts

10 ounces salted mini pretzels

12-16 ounces Christmas M&Ms

2 12 ounce bags of white chocolate chips

2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil

 Mix together all the Dry ingredients and set aside; then put the chips and oil into a microwave safe glass bowl I love the Pyrex large measuring bowl.  Put in microwave on high for one minute; stir; then another minute and stir if this doesn’t melt them all you can heat for 30 more seconds at a time until done ( 3 minutes max or it could burn). The bowl WILL BE HOT! BE CAREFUL!

Pour over mixture and blend until all the dry ingredients are covered. Then spread out over wax paper to dry make sure you have a large spot to spread the love. 

 Once it is all dry break apart and put into an air tight container or if you are giving it away I have put it in those ziplock containers with the red lids.  I have put it in zip lock baggies and this year I found these bags from Oriental Trading Company and used them.  I added a tiny reindeer and a tag!

The finished product but in peanut butter!

This year I got better containers than the bags above –  they better appreciate it LOL!

For the peanut butter version replace the white chocolate chips with peanut butter chips and the M&M’s with Reeces Pieces.  I have a lot of friends who like this one better.  I tried butterscotch once and it was waaay to rich!

***this year 2011 my friend Angela suggested peppermint white chocolate so we’ll give it a whirl!”***

I hope you like it!  (Just another thank you to Judy who gave me this recipe at OR you are the best!)

Summer Chicken Curry Salad

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It’s summer time!

One of my family’s all time favorite meals……Chicken Curry Salad YUM!

This salad is so easy to make and literally takes 10 minutes.

I originally looked for a good chicken salad that we would eat (the picky eaters that we are) I found one that was simple and fast but it had onions and raisins well that wouldn’t fly……so I took the basic recipe and tweaked it.

First mayonnaise 1 cup (I like two cups for a more creamy salad)

and then a tablespoon of curry

Mix these together first so the curry doesn’t chunk up once it is together;                               add in already cooked grilled chicken strips these are refrigerated and bagged the recipe calls for 3 of the bags.  They are in the grocery store by the pre-packaged ham and hot dogs the precooked chicken comes in cubes too if you prefer.

Add 1/2 cup almonds I like whole so I can pick them out if we have little ones eating it, now that Phoebe is older we like the slivers but the slices are good too!

Now cut your grapes in half I add a ton of grapes! but if you’re a stickler it calls for a cup (-:

Wallah very easy and so good!

and happy little ones (-:

I hope you love it like we do let me know if you do!

It’s that time of year again! Reindeer Chow

6 Comments

Reindeer Chow

 

Every year I make this delicious concoction for my co-workers and friends.  Over the years we have made some slight versions as my husband doesn’t quite care for chocolate….I know who doesn’t like chocolate ??? that would be Chad (-:

So here is the recipe follow along with the pics too!

 

 The ingredients :

5 cups of Corn Chex

5 cups of Cheerios

8 ounces of salted/or unsalted peanuts

10 ounces salted mini pretzels

12-16 ounces Christmas M&Ms

2 12 ounce bags of white chocolate chips

2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil

 Mix together all the Dry ingredients and set aside; then put the chips and oil into a microwave safe glass bowl I love the Pyrex large measuring bowl.  Put in microwave on high for one minute; stir; then another minute and stir if this doesn’t melt them all you can heat for 30 more seconds at a time until done ( 3 minutes max or it could burn). The bowl WILL BE HOT! BE CAREFUL!

Pour over mixture and blend until all the dry ingredients are covered. Then spread out over wax paper to dry make sure you have a large spot to spread the love. 

 Once it is all dry break apart and put into an air tight container or if you are giving it away I have put it in those ziplock containers with the red lids.  I have put it in zip lock baggies and this year I found these bags from Oriental Trading Company and used them.  I added a tiny reindeer and a tag!

The finished product but in peanut butter!

This year I got better containers than the bags above –  they better appreciate it LOL!

For the peanut butter version replace the white chocolate chips with peanut butter chips and the M&M’s with Reeces Pieces.  I have a lot of friends who like this one better.  I tried butterscotch once and it was waaay to rich!

I hope you like it!  (Just another thank you to Judy who gave me this recipe at OR you are the best!)

 

 

Chicken Zucchini Casserole

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This is one of my family’s favorites ~ we had it at my friend Jen’s house and she was sweet enough to share her recipe now I will share it here on my blog (-:

6 cups fresh zucchini cubed

three cans of all white chicken drained (sounds gross its not I promise!)

one box of chicken Stove Top stuffing  (leave a little off to the side to top it off)

one cup of sour cream and half a stick of butter

Mix it all up in a casserole dish top with the stuffing you set aside and cook at 350degrees for approximately 35 to 45 minutes or until brown check center to make sure its cooked through if you question if its done….Enjoy its so good!

Because of this recipe Pyper and I are going to grow a garden this year we are so excited, my friends Laura and Debbie are going to buy supplies Friday.  SO  EXCITED! zucchini