Sunday, June 2, 2013

So long, May!

Summer is finally here! For some of y'all, that means things slow down and take a much less hurried pace. In my world, it means things kick up a notch - and I love it! See, my primary work as a minister is with children and their families so summer means camps, VBS, trips, and special outings. It's crazy busy but so much fun.

Thanks again for following along each month and supporting my hobby! If you don't already follow me on Facebook or Pinterest, I'd love for you to!

Psst - don't miss the "things I've pinned" at the bottom! There is some great cooking going on in the blogosphere!

Here's what I shared in May in case you missed something along the way. Just click the picture to check out the recipe.

Just a month ago, we were talking about relief efforts for the small Czech community of West, TX located just north of Waco, TX where I attended seminary. To honor their heritage, and raise awareness, I joined with a few other Texan food bloggers in creating Czech desserts. Now y'all know I'm no baker but this Czech Poppy Seed Cake turned out beautifully and was delicious to boot!

May was my second month participating in a Surprise Recipe Swap and I had the opportunity to make this delicious and easy Shredded Mole Chicken. Thank you, Mr Crockpot, for making shredded chicken so easy! This chicken is perfect in anything Mexican inspired dish you're putting on the table for dinner. 

Also thanks to Mr Crockpot, we enjoyed some homemade Refried Beans - except without the need for lard, butter, or oil! These are a family favorite that we make quite often but the original recipe deserved an update and new photo. If you haven't tried them, do it soon! It makes a ton so it's like the gift that keeps giving - eat half, freeze half. Gotta love that!

We don't make or eat appetizers very often at home but I couldn't resist whipping up this Avocado Feta Dip after spotting a tub of feta in my fridge, just begging to be used up. What a great decision that was! It only takes 5 minutes to whip up and even less to devour. This dip screams summer to me and totally deserves a spot on your picnic table soon.

This Moroccan Stew was a surprise hit for us both. I knew we both liked Moroccan flavors a lot but I completely underestimated just how complex and delicious this recipe would turn out to be. While meatballs are included, this stew could also stand on it's own with just chickpeas.

If you're a fan of faux Americanized Chinese food (like I am!) you'll definitely want to give these Panda Express Copycat Chow Mein Noodles a try. Another recipe that cooks up fast (and a huge portion!) and goes with any of your favorite Chinese inspired dishes. Who doesn't love eating a big pile of noodles, am I right?

We're big on brunch so it made complete sense to try out this Crunchy French Toast one night for dinner. Y'all, the best french toast e-vah. Little bit more prep than a "normal" french toast recipe but the upside is that you bake it all at one time so everyone eats together. Sinful? Sure. Worth it? Absolutely.

My brunch related recipes didn't stop with french toast! Oh no, I took the delicious Funfetti Chocolate Chip Scone recipe from last month and adapted it to use strawberries instead for Strawberry Funfetti Scones. And actually liked it better. Ever made a scone before? Thanks to the cake mix, it's super simple and quick. And delicious. 

And rounding out the month is a large batch of these soft and delicious Chocolate Chip Vanilla Pudding Cookies. I tried them out on house guests and we all loved them! If you haven't jumped on the pudding cookie bandwagon yet, let this be your first experience with them. 

Some tasty treats I've pinned this month:
Homemade Spaghetti O's with Meatballs from Table for Two
Cheesy Tex-Mex Rice from The Kitchn
Lemonade Cake from Juanita's Cocina
Mango Blueberry Quinoa Salad with Lemon Basil Dressing from Veggie Belly
Bacon Pralines from Tortillas and Honey

Happy June, y'all!

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