Monday, September 30, 2013
How do I know? Well, I bake muffins all the time. Usually, I set them out to cool, pack them in containers or in the freezer, and never have any myself. These though.....
Yum. The kids now have one fewer muffin to eat.
The recipe is great as is (here)- I added 1 cup chopped walnuts for protein, but left the rest alone. It makes for a lovely, neutral light muffin. For more body, earthiness and oomph, I would suggest adding 1 tsp of cinnamon to the batter, along with the dry ingredients. Maybe a little nutmeg too.
One other change... Every muffin recipe baked in my home prior to this one was put into the oven in standard metal muffin tins, lined with decorative cupcake papers. Cute, but the cheap liners allow oil to seep through, so the design is never as adorable after you bake as before. And I once had individual silicone muffin cups, but the fluting did not allow the baked goods to release cleanly.
Enter silicone muffin pans.
*Cue angels singing*
Fantastic. No need to grease the pans, the the muffins nearly jumped out of their little muffin holes when cooked.
I highly recommend them-- I have a set similar to the link above, although I bought them at a garage sale for $5. :-)
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
|With flash- the wall color is grey, not green, but this photo has more depth and life|
|The view from a dining room chair|
Monday, September 16, 2013
Like all families, we here at the Unwired Home have our food issues. For the kids, food is truly fuel. One of my kids requires a vast amount of protein to keep his mind and body in gear. Huge amounts- he's a small kid and can out-eat me. The other kid has a much slower metabolism and is less athletic. While he wants to eat chocolate at every snack, a piece of fruit with meet his needs; for the high-metabolism child, protein is required in addition to the fruit. As a family, we are big into 'five-a-day' fruits and veggies, as well as high fiber to deal with a gastrointestinal issue.
In our community, like in yours, there are folks with all kinds of food issues. Some look like ours-- just preferences and lessons learned. But some issues may be more critical, and even deadly. Allergies to nuts, wheat and eggs. Texture/food color issues. Picky eaters.
Knowing that one of my kid needs protein, and both need fiber and healthy choices, I adapted the classic Marshmallow Rice Krispie treats recipe to fill a need (and a stomach). This recipe has a good amount of fiber, is crunchy and gives them a reason to eat cereal, which they both love.
Nutty O's Treats
4 Tbsp butter
1 cup peanut butter
3 cups mini marshmallows
4 cups Os cereal
2 cups puffed rice cereal
3/4 cup peanuts
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
Over medium heat in a large pot (10+ quart size, which helps to contain the mess), melt the butter. Add the peanut butter and stir until melted. Add the marshmallows and reduce the heat, stirring until well combined.
Turn off the heat, and stir in the cereal, nuts and chocolate (this is where it gets messy). Combine as best you can, then pour the whole blob into a 9x12 pan. Press the blob into the corners to make the bars dense and to fill the whole pan.
Let sit for 30-60 minutes to cool, then turn onto a cutting board and slice into bars.
Substitutions: Virtually everything in this recipe can be swapped out. Try sunflower seed butter in place of peanut butter to eliminate an allergen. Take out the chocolate chips to reduce calories. Use a GF cereal if you are celiac or wheat-sensitive. Use high-fiber cereal to amp up the fiber content.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
Sad, isn't it?
Instead, they read, do puzzles, shoot each other (and us) with nerf guns, play card games, and fight , just like my brother and I did. We lived. And so will they.
But there came a point when we realized that their cultural education was lacking. The media (mostly movies) they saw at camp or at their friends was G-rated dreck. When the kids watched TV at home, they mostly saw science programming. The kids weren't seeing any of the good stuff we watched as kids.
There are a ton of classics that are tame by modern standards, and a lot of fun to watch. This way, we like movie night too!
Listed below are the movies through which we selected to
For a decent content review, check IMDB's parental reviews. Many movies have a catalog of each bad word, sexual innuendo and aggressive moment. If one isn't there, I can tell you that the movies we've watched have some bad words (my kids know not to repeat them), mild violence (no spurting blood or gunfights) and a few sexual situations that are over the boys heads.
Classic Movies for every modern child:
Spaceballs (more bad words than I recalled, but really funny)
Batman (the original 1966 version. Very campy!)
Big (loved this one!)
Rookie of the Year
James and the Giant Peach
Muppet Movie (I sang the entire movie, much to my kids chagrin)
Back to the Future (kids loved this one!)
Ghostbusters (couldn't find streaming- we bought the DVD for $3 and have watched it many times)
Addams Family (a little too dark)
Puss In Boots
Wizard of Oz
Toy Story (and sequels)
Night at the Opera (Marx Brothers- humor was not inappropriate, but mature. Kids still enjoyed it)
Night at the Museum 1 and 2 (excellent)
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
On our list to see:
Who Framed Roger Rabbit
How to Train Your Dragon
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Add your own to the comments below! We're always looking for more great movies to share.
Post updated 11/2/13
My goals, of late, have not included blogging. But when I go to the office, a certain co-worker notes that he's looking for more recipes. He's gluten-free, so here's one for Tim!
|I'm ready for my cheese!|
Note: The extra 1/2 can refried beans will keep in your freezer. Simply put it in freezer-safe container, and don't forget about it!
Thursday, October 25, 2012
This blog's title ruins the surprise, so you already know that we have christened the day 'Thirsty Thursday'. Here's how we make smoothies in my house:
Basic Smoothie Recipe
1 cup yogurt
1/3 cup milk
1 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 Tbsp chia seeds (undetectable, and good for protein, fiber and Omega 3s)
Then, choose from at least one:
7 frozen strawberries
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup frozen raspberries
or.... another frozen fruit? Maybe mango or blueberries?
My $50, ten year old blender does not handle ice well, but works fine blending frozen fruit. This recipe contains a serving of fruit, which is more than my kids get most mornings- yogurt and milk supply calcium and protein, the cocoa adds anti-oxidents... and it's yummy.
Use whatever brand/flavor yogurt your family likes. My kids prefer it with bananas; I've been told that if you use a dark colored fruit, like blueberries, you can also add powdered spinach in order to up your intake of leafy greens. Like the flax seeds, the powdered greens don't add to the taste of the smoothie, but they do add to the nutritional content.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
I bought a 10lb bag of Nittany apples at the farmers market. After a taste test of all the apples the market had to offer (Stayman, Rome, Jonagold and more!) it seemed that this was the best-tasting, best-for-storage-in-the-basement-fridge apple. Yum.
Besides snacking, I had one ulterior motive for these apples-- this recipe for Apple Pie Bars. This blog is great, especially for seasonal crafty food things. A friend of mine celebrates the end of each week with fun food and family (Fun Food Friday), and I am working to adapt a version of that in our home to embrace fun and try new culinary treats.
So, Apple Crisp Bars. Most of the original recipe for the apples is intact, although I increased the seasonings and decreased the sugar. The biggest change I made was to use a 'crisp' topping in lieu of the top pie crust. This added another layer of texture to the treat, although it did make it more messy.
Ah well, fun = mess, right?
Apple Crisp Bars
- 1 pie crust (store-bought or homemade)
- 6 cups chopped apples (no need to peel)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup oats
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 cup chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts, I think)
- 6 Tbsp softened butter
2. Roll the crust to fit the bottom of a 9x13 baking pan. If the crust tears, patch it together with your fingers-- this is a great job for the kids.
3. In a large bowl, mix apples, sugar, brown sugar, flour, vanilla and spices.
4. Pour apple mixture into the pan on top of the crust, spreading it to cover the crust evenly.
5. Use the same bowl and mix up the crisp ingredients, taking care to blend the butter in well. Pour this over the apples, and again, spread to cover evenly.
6. Bake for 50 minutes, and allow to rest for five minutes before serving.