When I host a brunch time gathering, I like to make something that is definitely a treat, but that has enough substance to keep you going through the next part of the day. This hearty bread pudding was perfect on both counts. I tried it with fruit, nuts, whipped cream, and powdered sugar and cinnamon. My little guy declared it “honey cake” (Why? I have no idea, as it’s nothing like cake, but if it makes him happy, it makes me happy.) and kept trying to steal mine. (You’re lucky I got a photo for you, as he’s perfectly capable of inserting his spoon right into my photo shoot!)
My guests also seemed to approve, as I got many compliments. My only word of advice is to make sure you use a large enough casserole. I did not, and the praline topping boiled over into an unholy mess in my oven. Enjoy!
Everybody loves fresh bread, so sometimes all you need to make dinner super special is some hot, fresh dinner rolls and a little butter. I bet you think they are hard to make, but you couldn’t be more wrong! Thanks to this super easy recipe from JMM Danette, you will be putting out hot, fresh dinner rolls any time you want.
If you love dinner rolls, you’ll be delighted to keep this basic recipe handy. All the ingredients are things you most likely keep on hand all the time, so you can throw them together without too much advance planning. They’ll be ready in just a bit over an hour, so if you start them when you start thinking about what’s for dinner, they’ll be ready when you are. Make ahead tip: Make the dough, do the first rise, and roll the balls for the rolls. Line your “roll pan” with foil and load up the rolls as though you were planning to bake them. Freeze them, pop them out of the pan, and store them in a freezer bag to bake later. Just pull them out of the freezer, put them in the pan and let them thaw and do their second rise in the pan. Bonus: The foil will save on cleanup. Continue reading Dinner Rolls From Scratch that turn out every time!→
Good morning, Joy Makin’ Mamas. Let’s have lunch. No, really, I want to talk about lunch!
It’s so easy to get into a rut here. I mean, if breakfast is “the most important meal of the day,” and dinner is the meal that brings your family together, that doesn’t leave a lot of time and energy for lunch ideas. Am I right? So let’s shake things up with a little Lunchbox Rescue! Today I want to talk about OUR lunch. You know, put on your own oxygen mask first? If you’ve got a fantastic kids’ lunch idea, send it to me– I’m working on a kids’ lunch post for next week! Continue reading Lunchtime SOS! Lunch ideas plus The Best Egg Salad EVER→
So, if you’ve been paying attention at all- or ever- it will not surprise you to hear that nature is not always beautiful. In fact, it’s pretty darn brutal. (I have a theory that this is part of why all the world’s major religions keep having to tell us the same things over and over, like, “Don’t kill each other.” Although those things SOUND obvious, when you observe other members of the Animal Kingdom you start to realize that it’s not really what you’d call an innate concept. It’s necessary for civilization, but we seem to need to be reminded, the way a five year old keeps needing to be told to wash his or her hands after using the toilet. So, for those of you keeping track at home: Nature is harsh. Don’t try it at home.)
The further adventures of my Mama Bird Watching have led me to discover that the nest in my hedge actually belongs to a pair of Northern Cardinals. Close on the heels of that information, I learned that there is a bird called the cowbird. Cowbirds are apparently total jerks. They watch other birds build their nests, and then come lay their own eggs in them. Sometimes they just leave once they’ve done that, and sometimes they peck the other eggs to make sure their own offspring will be alone in the nest. If you’ve just come to the realization that your back yard should be rated “R” for violence, you are not alone.
The reason this is relevant is that it’s nearly impossible to tell Northern Cardinal eggs from some kinds of cowbird eggs. Fingers crossed that mama cardinal is actually sitting on eggs she laid herself, and not those of some outsized interloper who will gobble up all the bugs she brings while her natural chicks starve. (Keep calm! That does happen but this year the 17 year cicadas are coming. Bugs will practically throw themselves into these baby birds’ beaks. In other words, No One Will Starve This Year.)
Listen to a Northern Cardinal:
Stop by my post Hello, Mama Bird to learn about Carolina Wrens, the bird I thought had made this nest, and also for bird lesson resources!