This weekend was stressful because Dave had to work the entire time so I pretty much had the girls to myself. Still, we managed to eat pretty well, thanks mostly to the grandparents.
Friday night Dave took a short break and we went to an Italian restaurant. We took Hilshire Farms Beef "Lit'l Smokies" and blueberries for Ainsley.
Saturday, she had some of the 3-ingredient pumpkin bread (see recipe in my post from a couple of days ago) and Kroger Naturally Preferred nitrate-free bacon for a brunch-type snack, and then ate some Arby's roast beef (i.e., the kid's roast beef w/o the bun) and applesauce after I made a lunchtime run to Arby's.
Saturday night, Ainsley stayed with my mom and had smoked turkey from Dickey's (who knows what else she had -- my mom spoils her terribly by letting her eat candy pretty much the whole time they're together. Once I went over to retrieve Ainsley and found her eating sugar cubes straight from the box!).
Sunday for lunch, we ate at my mom's and had meatballs (recipe below), peas, creamed corn (nondairy), and Rice-a-Roni. My mom made a wonderful and awesomely easy Blueberry Crisp for dessert (recipe below).
Sunday night, we ate Nana's Special Chili (recipe below) and cornbread (Jiffy Corn Muffin mix with egg-replacer and soymilk used in place of the eggs and milk).
For dessert that night, I made red velvet cupcakes using a Duncan Hines box mix. I used Ener-G egg replacer in place of the eggs. I have also made red velvet cupcakes before from scratch using this recipe, but I have to say, I liked the box mix better in terms of taste and ease. I frosted the cupcakes with Pillsbury Cream Cheese frosting, which, surprisingly enough, has no milk in it!
Here are recipes to the meatballs and Blueberry Crisp my mom prepared and the chili my mother-in-law made:
Family Tradition Meatballs (recipe created by my grandmother -- my dad's mom)
1 lb ground beef or turkey
2 slices safe bread, pulled apart into small pieces
~1/2 C chopped green bell pepper
~1/2 C chopped onion
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Mix all ingredients together in a mixing bowl with your hands. Shape into meatballs & brown them in a skillet with olive oil. You could eat them as is, or with ketchup on the side (like meatloaf), or in spaghetti. Baked sweet potatoes go especially nicely as a side.
My variation --
1. When I make the meatballs, I add to the above ingredients 1 small can tomato paste. Sometimes I also add 1/2 to 1 cup of matchstick carrots (i.e., carrots you can buy that are already grated) and/or 1/2 zucchini (diced) for an added nutritional boost. If pressed for time, I omit all veggies except the tomato paste and matchstick carrots.
2. You can make an awesome pizza with the above ingredients, minus the bread crumbs:
brown the ground beef/turkey in a skillet, add the green pepper, onion, salt, pepper, tomato paste, and 1 can of pizza sauce (we like Muir Glen), and simmer 5-10 minutes. While the mixture is simmering, open a can of Pillsbury pizza crust and spread onto a greased cookie sheet. Then spread mixture onto the pizza crust and bake according to the directions on the pizza crust can. Yummy!
2 C coarse (dairy-free) graham cracker crumbs (Keebler & Honey Maid are some brands we've used in the past) (make crumbs by putting the crackers in the food processor or by putting them in a ziploc bag and crushing them with a rolling pin)
3/4 C sugar
1/2 C melted dairy-free margarine
1 pint fresh blueberries or the equivalent amount of frozen blueberries
Mix crumbs, sugar, & margarine. Sprinkle 1/2 of the mixture in a greased 8 x 8 square baking pan. Cover with 1/2 of the blueberries. Top with 1/2 of the remaining crumbs. Then add the rest of the blueberries and, on top of that, the rest of the crumbs. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes more. Makes ~8 servings.
Nana's Special Chili
1 lb ground beef
1 packet French's Chili-O seasoning mix
1 can diced tomatoes (do not drain)
1 large can Bush's brown sugar baked beans
1 can black beans (do not drain)
1/2 C light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon (adjust to your taste)
Brown ground beef in skillet and drain off fat. Mix ground beef and remaining ingredients in crock pot and cook for 1 hr on high and then 2-3 hours on low. Serve over rice, macaroni, or corn chips/fritos.