Sunday, September 26, 2010

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes

My kiddos eat well. They actually request pancakes at least twice a week - so we have been working on new flavors all summer. Since fall is upon us, pumpkin seemed to be the obvious choice. We tried these out this morning and they are super yummy!

The batter was really think, so when I put a ladle of it in the pan I spread it out a bit with the back of the spoon. I cooked these at a lower temp than I would a regular pancake because of the whole wheat flour and the sugar in the pumpkin. They cooked up nice and fluffy and golden brown.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes

  • 1 C. whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 C. AP flour
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 1 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. ground ginger
  • 1/2 t. ground nutmeg - I used a scant 1/2 t.
  • 1 C. buttermilk - I keep the powdered buttermilk in the fridge and used that.
  • 1 C. canned pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 T. oil
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 2 T. dark brown sugar
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the first eight ingredients (whole wheat flour through nutmeg). In a separate bowl, whisk together the last six ingredients (buttermilk through brown sugar).

2. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and blend together with a wooden spoon until just combined. Lumps are ok, just make sure all the flour on the bottom of the bowl is mixed in. If batter seems too thick to pour, you can gently stir in a little more buttermilk.

3. Drop pancakes by ladleful onto a medium-hot griddle. Pancakes are ready to turn when the edges start to look a little dry and you can see small bubbles forming on the surface.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Who's in charge here...

I believe the answer would be Daddy!  We got new tags for the "new gold car" as the kids call it.  While I was in the kitchen making dinner, Doug was playing with the kids in the living room.  At some point the boys come in to the kitchen with stickers all over their arms - clearly very excited and having a grand time.  I step around the corner to the living room to see what has transpired in the time it took me to get food ready and Gabe runs to show me his handy work:

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Have Potty, Will Travel...and other random things...

We have had a pretty busy weekend for people that had no plans for Labor Day. Saturday involved Doug being a pall bearer and taking the boys to the funeral - and since Doug was otherwise pretty much engaged, it required a good deal of one parent time. Not the easiest thing to pull of with 2 year old twins at 11:00am, prime lunch and nap time.

We made it through the service with only limited noise - luckily most folks felt it was 'cute.' (Not me, but really, not the kids fault. Timing is everything with little kids - and the timing was not ideal.) Grayson thought the organ music was pretty and he actually sat more still and quiet than Gabe, which may be the first time that has EVER happened! Gabe also made it through the entire day, including the car rides, the service, the reception afterward, etc. in his big boy pants and didn't have any accidents at all! He even went to the potty at the church on the big toilet. What was not great about the day? Well, getting home at almost 2:00 and the boys totally missing their entire afternoon nap.

Then Sunday we had a good morning - but again, the nap was all screwed up. They were both obviously very tired, but they didn't sleep at all! Instead they played (nicely, even) in their room together for 90 minutes -- but no sleep. Then we took a trip to Costco. Both of them were sound asleep in the car almost before we hit the interstate (that would be all of 2 miles away from the house!)
We tried to let them sleep as much as we could - Gabe got about 40 minutes before he woke up while I was sitting in the car with them both while Doug made the run into the Toys R Us on his own! Then we moved on to the Costco - Gabe was awake, but Grayson was still sleeping. So I took Gabe and we headed to the back of the car to take a 'potty break' before going into Costco. Gabe parked on the potty, but no luck. Doug finally had to wake up Grayson when he got him out of the car. He got almost an hour, but I think they both needed at least 2 to make up for the day before.

Once we were in the store I took Gabe to the bathroom one more time to see if he needed to go and show him there WAS a potty we could use if he needed to. Grayson was pretty unhappy the whole trip. He was unusually clingy and snuggy, so I think maybe he wasn't feeling so well. He us usually a really happy little kid, so this was out of character for him. We also got a 'potty break' before we left the parking lot. Gabe waved at all the people from his thrown as they walked by. Too cute.

There was some fun outside play when we got home - and both the boys realized they could reach through the wire cage around the tomato cage that is right around the back door. It has a wonderful heirloom cherry tomato called SunSweet (pretty little orange tomatoes that are super sweet.) They rounded the corner with tomatoes in both hands, squished tomato juice on their shirts and they were both grinning and saying "Mmmmm!" and "Yummy!" as they ate every single ripe tomato off the plant! (This after Grayson took a big red tomato off a plant in the garden yesterday and ate it like an apple!)

While the boys really are good kids for the most part, I am not loving trying to be an equally good mommy being this pregnant. If I carry them - I cramp and get dizzy. I can't bend over anymore, or pick them up easily. I think they are feeling a little neglected. It makes me sad that I am having to back down on what I can do for and with them - right when they need it the most. Things are changing so fast....they start preschool in a week and they will have a little brother in about 60 days. Time goes by way too fast!

(Photos of the boys at pre-school open house the week before school started)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Brown Sugar Chicken

Back to the crock-pot. I had Back to School night today/tonight and I wanted to make sure all the boys had something to eat. I have been trying recipes from my newest cookbook Make it Fast, Cook it Slow. I have to give credit to this book for what will certainly end up being many pounds of extra fat on my a$$, as it taught me how to make an outstanding Creme Brulee in the crock pot. But I digress - tonight was chicken...


  • 6 boneless, skinless breast halves (could use 12 thighs instead if you wanted)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon-lime soda
  • 2/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves smashed and chopped garlic
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper

The Directions:

Use a 4 quart crock-pot for this recipe.

Put your chicken into your crock-pot. Cover with the brown sugar, pepper, chopped garlic, and soy sauce. Add the vinegar, and pour in the soda. It will bubble!

Cover and cook on low for 6-9 hours, or on high for 4-5. The chicken is done when it is cooked through and has reached desired consistency. The longer you cook it, the more tender it will be.

Serve over a bowl of white rice with a ladle full of the broth.

The Verdict:

The kids love, loved, loved it. It was tender - you could shred it with a fork. I'll try to get a picture of it before everyone eats it all. It turned a pretty mahogany color.

I found it to be a bit too sweet for grown up tastes, but I am not a sweets kind of person. (I don't think anyone else in the house would agree with me!) I am sure we will make it again. I am thinking two new directions to go with this would be 1- serve with a stronger flavored veg, like sauteed bok choy to balance out the sweetness or 2- used the chicken and broth as a base to build a noodle bowl. Maybe cut the sweetness with a little more chicken broth and add udon noodles and some crunchy veg like you would expect in a typical noodle bowl.