Watermelon Lemonade

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I’ve had a watermelon sitting in my kitchen for over a week and hadn’t found the time to chop it up until today. Upon chopping into the highly anticipated fruit of the summer, I was sad to discover that it had become too “mealy” to enjoy. As you know, I’m a “waste not, want not” kind of person. So I tossed this lovely watermelon in the Ninja and now I have delicious watermelon lemonade!

Here’s what you do:
Scoop out the inside of the melon and toss in the blender. I have a ninja pulse, so I just tossed seeds and all in. Blend for about 20-30 seconds. (Not too long as you don’t want to purée the seeds.)
Strain your melon juice with a mesh strainer to get all the pulp & seeds out. (If you don’t, you’ll be chewing your lemonade)

Now you have a bowl of beautiful, red watermelon juice!

To make Watermelon Lemonade:

Combine 2 cups of watermelon juice, 1 cup lemon juice, 3 cups water and 1 cup simple syrup. Stir well and enjoy over ice! Yum!

(For Simple syrup: in a pot combine 1cup water with 1cup sugar. Heat over medium heat until dissolved. I keep a gallon of this in the fridge at all times! It’s so handy!)

Cheers to a refreshing summer drink!

Whip it up Weekend Recipe – Mini Lemon Pies

I know I haven’t done a Whip it up recipe in a while, but I made these this morning and had to share! I found the recipe here and after some tweaks, I got it just right.

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Isn’t it so cute!

Here’s what you will need:

1 package of mini graham cracker pie crusts (they come 6 to a pack)

Lemon Curd filling:

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup cold water

6 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

Lemon Fluff topping: (this makes enough for 12 pies, so double the curd recipe if you want to make all 12)

1 small box of sugar free instant lemon pudding

1 cup of skim milk

1-8oz tub of lite cool whip

Lemon zest

What you do:

Lemon Curd:

In a saucepan, mix together the sugar, water and cornstarch.  Bring it to a boil on medium heat and stir constantly.  This mixture needs to get fairly thick – almost like a pudding consistency.  When the mixture thickens, reduce your heat to low and stir for another minute.  Remove the mixture from the heat, place in a non-metallic bowl and add lemon juice and zest.  Allow your lemon curd to cool and thicken at room temperature.  At this point mine had not thickened up, so I poured it back into the pot and brought it to a boil again. Perfection! Then, store in your fridge for up to a few days.

Lemon Fluff topping:

Mix together pudding, milk and a little of the lemon zest.  (Save the rest of the lemon zest for garnish.)  Allow the pudding to set for 30 seconds – 1 minute.  Fold in Cool Whip and be careful not to over mix.  Now you can get fancy and pour the mixture in a piping bag fitted with a star tip, but I don’t have any of those. So, I poured mine in a gallon baggie and snipped the corner. Works great!

How to Assemble:

Divide the lemon curd into the pie shells. Then swirl the lemon fluff on top, sprinkle with lemon zest and garnish with a lemon wedge. Oooo! (after thought) A light sprinkle of yellow sugar instead of the zest would be pretty too!

Refrigerate until time to serve!

Super simple and so cute a summer-y! It only took me 30 minutes to prepare these sweet bites.

Enjoy!

Whip is up Weekend Recipe – “Ice Cream” Sandwiches

This is such a simple and delicious snack. The Chicks think it’s quite a treat, I like that it’s healthy and not loaded with sugar.

Here’s What You Need:
Graham Crackers
Peanut Butter
Bananas

Here’s What You Do:
Combine 1 banana, mashed, with 3tbls of peanut butter (or more if you like more). Spread a thick layer on half a cracker, top with the other half. Freeze for a few hours.

You can make it a little fancier by dipping them in Magic Shell.

Happy eating!!

Whip it up Weekend Recipe – Taco Seasoning

Used to be, if I was out of taco seasoning, I would avoid  the recipe. But, I have since learned that Taco seasoning is the EASIEST thing to make! I don’t ever want to hear of any readers buying taco seasoning packets every again!!! 🙂

 

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Ingredients

1/4 cup Chili powder

1 1/2 tsp onion powder

1 1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 1/2 tsp cumin

1 1/2 tsp ground oregano

1/2 tsp paprika

1 1/2 tsp Lawry’s Season salt (optional)

For added spice, mix in 1 tsp Red Pepper flakes

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Mix the spices up and store in an air tight container for up to 6 months.

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2 tbls = 1 taco packet

 

 

Happy Eating!

Whip it up Weekend Recipe – Ranch Dressing

I’m on a quest lately to remove as many artificials and preservatives from our diet as possible. I have been able to do that with a lot of our foods, but there are a few items I am still working on. To be honest, it will probably be a never ending quest! One staple in our house that has been hard to let go of is Ranch Dressing! My chicks can’t eat nuggets without it and Rooster Brown can’t eat ANYTHING without it! (or Tony Chachere’s Cajun Seasoning, but that’s another story…) There is so much junk and fat in salad dressings! MSG for one and that stuff wreaks havoc on your body! One of my teachers taught on MSG when I was in trade school, and I have tried to stay away from it ever since. Sadly, MSG is prominent in most pre-made dressings and powder packets. So I decided to try making my own buttermilk ranch dressing. I had buttermilk that was a by product from my butter making. (I will write a post later about Butter vs Margarine. The findings will gross you out for sure!) I found this recipe on several blogs and decided to give it a try! Here’s what you do…

Ingredients
2 Tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried dill weed
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp minced onion or onion powder
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp pepper

Directions
Add each of the dried spices to a bowl and gently stir. ( I ran mine through the food processor to chop the parsley to be more like store bought dressing)
Store in a resealable plastic baggie or small ball canning jar with tight fitting lid in your spice cabinet. Makes about 4 Tbsp worth of mix.

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Ranch Mix

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Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

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Recycled creamer bottle has the perfect pour spout!

To make the ranch dressing, whisk together 1/3 cup greek yogurt with 1/4 cup buttermilk (more or less depending on the consistency you want) with 1 Tbsp (or 1/2 tbsp if you use the food processor) of the homemade ranch dressing seasoning mix. Season with salt, to taste. Use immediately and can refrigerate for up to 3 days. This is a great use for empty creamer bottles!!
I did a lick test on the spoon and it was AMAZING!! I cannot wait to try it on a salad! I will update later with the verdict from the family!

Enjoy and Happy eating!!!

Recipe adapted from: $5 Dinners

Whip it Up Weekend Recipe – Crock Pot BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

This is a favorite in our house and so easy to make!

BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

2-3 Chicken breast

1-18oz bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce ( I like a honey hickory or a smoky bourbon)

Toss it all in the crock pot and cook on HI for 6 hours. The meat should just shred apart with a fork.

Serve on hamburger buns with any toppings you want!

So simple! I keep this already prepped in my freezer ready to pop in the crock pot at anytime!

 

Whip it up Weekend Recipe – Nesquick Makeover

So, I will admit….my Chicks will only drink chocolate milk. Yes, I know…terrible parent, but if I can insure that they are going to drink it and get a proper amount of calcium, I will do it. Our pantry was always stocked with chocolate syrup or Nesquik  Have you priced Nesquik recently??? EXPENSIVE!!!! Or read the ingredients??? EWW!!! I figured there had to be a healthy, less expensive way to give my chicks their chocolatey goodness, so I turned to my trusty friend….Google. 🙂 I found some recipes for a syrup style chocolate and tried that for a while, but making it was time consuming. Google and went back to work again…

Here’s what I found thanks to Sugar Bananas! 

2/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup cocoa

pinch of salt (which I always forget to put in and it tastes just fine)

Stir it up until mixed thoroughly.

VIOLA!! DONE!

Now, to actually make it into chocolate milk took some trial and error since the cocoa doesn’t like to dissolve in cold milk. Easy solution…mix powder with a tablespoon or 2 of hot water, then add the milk! Delish!

And the chicks (and myself)  love it!

This is a quick 2 minute recipe you can Whip it Up in no time!