Sunday, March 20, 2011

They're Grrrrrapes!

These are so easy that we made them!
This week was St. Patrick's Day and of course, at work, we have to have some sort of celebration. Every celebration at work always revolves around food. It makes people happy and almost makes them think they are having fun at work. I said almost. The theme was Grazin the Green and it was a potluck where you had to make or buy something green. See the theme here?

I wracked my brain trying to think of something different, something that I haven't brought into work before and something that people will like. Hhhhmmmmmm...what do people like? My friend, Tracy, had written some ideas onto the sign up sheet to spark peoples interest and sure enough, one of those things sparked my thoughts. Green grapes! Grape salad! That's easy, right?

So began my quest for green grapes. I was at Aldi, which I LOVE and do an overwhelming majority of my shopping at, and they only had one package of grapes left, so I thought, I will just run to Dominick's. It's across the street and on my way home. Payten and I run in there after our shopping spree at Aldi, after she conned me into two packages of jelly beans, we finally made it over to the produce. Our Dominick's produce section is very large and they usually have a wide selection of items. I thought this was going to be a quick trip, grapes, in and out. Well two bags of jelly beans later, I am looking at these green grapes, if you can even call them that, and I was thinking, how in the world can they have this on their shelves? I stood there looking around in total disbelief at what they had there for green grapes, rather, brown, moldy, mushy fruit fly infested, grapes, not to mention the price they wanted for these so called grapes.

Take that Dominick's!
We were outta there. Paid for our jelly beans and hit the road. Now I need to make this salad and I need grapes. Thanks to Jewel and my friends at work the next day, I had decent GREEN grapes. I brought those grapes home and on the busiest of days, baked cupcakes, rather Jasen finished baking the cupcakes, I went to yoga and at about 8:45p.m. started my grape salad.

Being a working mom, that squeezes absolutely everything I can into one day, I am always happy to have the EASIEST least time consuming recipes. If it tastes goods, my family likes it, it is simple and quick to make, I love it. That's one of the reasons I started this blog. Let's face it, we all want tasty food that anyone can create and in a short period of time.

Back to my story, so it's 8:45p.m. and I have to whip up this salad.
Here is what I did:

4lbs of green grapes washed and dried. When I say dried, I took a paper towel and blotted them before I picked them off of the stems.
2-8oz packages of cream cheese, soft
(I used the 1/3 less fat kind)
1-16oz container of sour cream
(I used the light sour cream)
2 cups of white sugar
2 tsp of vanilla

The ingredients below are optional. I have never had the salad with these in it, but I assume it would be good.
8oz chopped pecans
4TBS brown sugar

My always willing, taste testers.
OK, wash the grapes.
In a large bowl, mix the soft cream cheese, sour cream, white sugar and vanilla. Beat this very well until it is really smooth. I'm talking smooooooooooooth as gllllaaaaaasssssss. (Jasen and the kids have been saying smooth as glass for everything lately, I guess I have been easily influenced.)

Grape picking, child labor.
Now, blot the grapes on a paper towel as you pick them off the stem and throw the into the, smooth as glass, mixture.

Finally, fold them in, so that they are well covered. You don't want any naked grapes.

Cover and refrigerate before serving.

For the optional step that I don't do:
After you fold the grapes into the smooth as glass mixture, then sprinkle with the brown sugar and pecans and mix again, cover and pop them in the fridge. Again, I don't make it this way, but I assume it would tasted good.

Now one final thing. Auntie Elaine has made her debut to this blog with her heavenly cupcakes, which I also brought to our Grazin the Green event. I owe this recipe to her too. She is amazing when it comes to quick delicious little treats. A+ Auntie Elaine!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I Think It's Called a Qwe-chee.

Let it stand 10 minutes???
But we are starving mom!

Quiche. Sounds fancy, right? That is if you know how to say it. Every single time I hear the word quiche, I think of my good friend Karen. Karen was in the midst of planning her wedding and they were getting ready to choose their menu. There was an array of appetizers to choose from, delicious dinner selections and of course, the lovely cake for dessert. I am sure any of you that have planned a wedding or some large event similar has been faced with the daunting task of choosing what to eat. Karen and Justin went for the tasting event and came home with rave reviews on the food. They loved it and that made her wedding planning a lot easier. Of course, we were all excited to hear how it went and what was good and what did they pick. As any bride to be, Karen was really excited to tell us all about it and she started with the appetizers. She raved about how good they were and that there was this thing on the menu she had never heard of before, mini quiche, but Karen didn't say quiche. Karen said, I think they are called qwechees. Qwe-chee. Yes, qwe-chee. We all sat there with blank faces and all of a sudden it hit me! QUICHE! Oh My God, you are talking about quiche! I immediately burst out laughing and said it's quiche! Seriously, this is one of my all time favorite Karen moments other than at her bachelorette party when we got into the car and she told me to stop driving so fast. We were still in the parking lot, car in park. Karen, I love you and I also love qwe-chee.

Since, I love the quiche, I decided I was going to try and make one. It couldn't be that hard, could it? Just because it has a fancy name doesn't mean it should be that hard. It is only a qwe-chee after all. I have the pie crust, I have eggs, cheese and veggies, why not? I started off as I always do when embarking on something new, I hit the internet for ideas. You know a point of reference, a starting point.

I have my tried and true favorite sites,,, and of course good ole google. I google everything, but for this particular endeavor, I went to I got there and they had an array of different recipes. I usually go through a couple different ones and pick and choose things I like from each recipe and meld them into my own. That's what I did for my delish qwe-chee.

Here is what I did:
1 frozen in the pan pie crust, make it easy on yourself, just get the frozen but thaw it out before using
5 eggs
1/3  cup of milk, I almost always use skim, unless the Vitamin D is all we have
1/3 cup of miracle whip
1/2 to 3/4 cup of shredded cheese of choice, I used cheddar
fresh chopped veggies of choice, I used 1/2 of large onion, 1 green pepper, and some broccoli
1/2 lb of sausage, browned you know the kind, like Tennessee Pride or Jimmy Deans in the big roll

Ok first, brown the sausage and when it is almost done, throw in all of the chopped veggies. Mix them up and let them cook for about 3-5 minutes. Just enough so they aren't so crisp.

Beat the eggs, milk and miracle whip until it is all mixed very well.

Stir in the veggies and sausage and then add the cheese.

Now take your thawed crust and poke the bottom with a fork. You don't have to pierce it completely, just poke all around the bottom. I guess it is supposed to help it bake or something, not sure why, but I did it and it worked.

Pour the egg mixture into the crust. Trust me the 5 eggs will fill it. Any more and you will have an over flowing eggy mess on your hands.

No jiggle in the center, golden, this baby is done!
Place it onto a cookie sheet, bake on the center rack for 40-45minutes at 375. You will know this is done when the center is set and it is a golden color. Give it a good jiggle, if the center moves, it's not done, if it is firm, take it out.

Let it stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Happy Qwe-chee eaters!
There you go. Qwe-chee or quiche depending on your mood. We also had fruit on the side and the kids loved it, so that means it was a hit in our house. We will definitely be having qwe-chee again.