Peaches and Pumpkin

Enjoying the sweet and sour in life.

Sweet and Sour Chicken with Fried Rice May 1, 2013


Hey everyone!  I know it has been close to a year since my last post..and I am hoping to start things up again, and post regularly!

 

 

There has been so many changes in the last year. We have lost a dear grandmother, who was a big supporter of my blog. After reading about a cheesecake failure, she surprised me with a perfect cheesecake pan! She will definitely be missed in our lives.
mema and paige

On another sad note: our dog, Tank, went missing. I posted about him last year, and what a wonderful addition to our family he was. He has been missing for a little over a month, and we would love for him to come home still! It’s hard to give up hope on something, and I still look for him everyday.
Tank

On a lighter note of course, Paige’s birthday is in less than a month…she will be three! I can’t believe it. And Colt is just about as big as her already. It’s hard to belive.

 

 

On to the recipe!! I found this one over at Life as a Lofthouse Food Blog. I’m in love with a lot of her recipes, and this is definitely a family favorite.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 4 tbs. ketchup
  • 1 tbs. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and heat 1/4 cup of oil in a skillet over medium. Rinse chicken, and cut into cubes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

2.  Dredge in the cornstarch, then dip into the beaten eggs. Fry for a couple of minutes, or right before it is done. Set in a 8×8 cooking dish.

3.  Mix together vinegar, sugar, ketchup, soy sauce and garlic powder with a whisk.

4.  Pour over cooked chicken in baking dish. Bake for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes.

 

 

This recipe is perfect with fried rice! I’m going to try to stay on top of things here, and keep updating with more recipes!

Thanks everyone for taking the time to read my blog!

 

Buttermilk Cornbread April 21, 2012

Filed under: Favorite Recipes,Side Dishes — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 9:38 am
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Buttermilk Cornbread: This is heaven to me..in a dish. I won’t lie, I ate almost all of it.

This has been a good week for me, according to Brandon. Every night I have made something he loves, and it has turned out great (more recipes to come this weekend)! It makes me really happy to be able to make things from scratch, considering that about 4 years ago, I couldn’t boil potatoes.

 I have a weakness for anything bread related. My sister recommended this recipe to me from allrecipes.com, and it is fantastic… so when I made homemade chili this week, of course we had to have cornbread!

Buttermilk Cornbread

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup corn meal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8×8 baking dish.
  2. Melt butter in a large skillet. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar. Quickly add eggs, and beat until blended. Combine buttermilk with baking soda and stir into the mixture in pan. Stir in flour, corn meal, and salt until well blended. There shouldn’t be any lumps. Pour batter into greased dish.
  3. Bake in a preheated oven 35-45 minutes, or a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.

This goes amazing with chili, so let me know if you would like that recipe! Thanks for reading:)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buttermilk Pancakes


When I posted the Chicken Fried Steak recipe..I told you would share other recipes with buttermilk. The first is buttermilk pancakes!

For the longest time I’ve kept Bisquick mix in my cabinets, and used it maybe once a week for biscuits, pancakes, or an easy ground beef meal. But then I ran out…and had to make pancakes from scratch. I have no clue why I wasn’t doing this to begin with. You can really tell a difference, and it’s not that difficult. Plus, any leftovers I have, I freeze and can microwave for a morning that we are too hungry to wait!

Buttermilk Pancakes

From Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  In a separate bowl beat together buttermilk, milk, eggs, and butter. Wait to mix the wet and dry ingredients until you are ready to start cooking.
  2. Heat a lightly buttered griddle or frying pan over medium/high heat.
  3. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, and use a fork or wooden spoon to blend. Be careful not to over mix.
  4. Pour about 1/2 cup of mix into the heated frying pan. When you start to see little bubbles coming up in the pancake, it’s time to flip it..a minute or so. Brown on both sides, and serve.

A few notes: Do no overmix…it will make take away from the fluffiness (if that’s a word). I noticed in my batter, there were still lumps, but once you cook the pancakes they disappear, so don’t worry about them.

Also..this recipe makes A LOT. I halved it..and it still fed Paige, Brandon and I for two days. While making this yesterday, I halved the flour, got distracted..and continuted adding the ingredients. I didn’t notice I was adding the complete serving amounts until I got to the buttermilk. Don’t do this 🙂

 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken Fried Steak April 17, 2012


After making this recipe for the second time last night..I couldn’t wait to share! I’m always on the look out for great beef recipes. With a lot of hunters in our family, and a freezer full of deer meet; I usually substitute ground beef, or beef cube steak with deer meat. You can’t tell the difference.

Anyway, I think the secret to this recipe is really the buttermilk. It makes a huge difference. It’s rare that I buy something just for one recipe, so I was on a search yesterday for other recipes that included buttermilk. This morning we had buttermilk pancakes, and tonight we will have homemade chili and cornbread! I will post these recipes later, because they are just as good!

Chicken Fried Steak

originally from allrecipes.com

  • 4 (1/2 pound) cube steaks (beef or deer)
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce ( i.e. Tabasco)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups of vegetable shortening, for deep-frying

Directions:

  1. Place flour in a shallow bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together baking powder, baking soda, black pepper and salt. Stir in buttermilk, egg, hot pepper sauce, and garlic.
  2. Heat shortening in a deep cast iron skillet to 350 degrees. Dredge steaks in flour, dip in buttermilk mixture, then dredge again in flour. Fry the steaks in the skillet until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes per side. Remove any extra grease by placing on a plate lined with paper towels.

A few things: I didn’t use nearly two cups of flour..and ended up wasting a lot! So I would cut that down, and add more if needed. The recipe also included instructions for a home-made pan gravy. I did this the first time I made this recipe, and it was a disaster! So, I didn’t feel right including it here. Instead, I used vegetable oil to fry my steaks, then cheated and used a package country gravy mix instead:)

Pair this with mashed potatoes and something green..and you have a great meal! Enjoy!

Does anyone have any recipes suggestions for buttermilk?

 

 

Carrot Cake April 4, 2012


I wanted to go ahead and pass along a Carrot Cake recipe I found before Sunday! I found this recipe on Life as a Lofthouse (food blog). She has the most wonderful recipes! We recently made her Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken with Fried Rice recipe…and I could not stop eating it. I think I finished Paige’s plate too!

Anyways..here it is!

Carrot Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups canola oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 5 large carrots (peeled and grated, about 4 cups)
  • 1 cup coconut

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9 inch round pans.
  2. Sift together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside
  3. In a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix together sugar, oil and eggs on low-speed until combined. Mix in dry ingredients just until blended. Fold in the carrots and coconut. Divide the batter evenly in the greased baking pans, and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  4. Cool cakes on wire racks for about ten minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife, then place another rack on top of the cake. Turn upside down, and tap the pan to loosen it. The cakes should cool completely before icing.

Basic Cream Cheese Frosting

From allrecipes.com

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  •  4 cups  confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Beat softened butter and cream cheese until well blended.
  2. Add powdered sugar, and vanilla until creamy.

I showed a picture yesterday of a Bunny Cake. You could use this carrot recipe for it! Once your two round cakes have cooled..place one in the center as a face. Cut two half moons inwardly into the second cake, making a bow-tie and two ears for a bunny. Ice the whole thing, and decorate! You could also make cupcakes. Enjoy!

 

Easter Findings April 3, 2012


This year marks the first of many fun times with the kids! After having Paige, I was too excited for all the celebrations, adventures, and excitement that seemingly disappeared after I grew out of my childhood. I couldn’t wait for our first trip to the beach, or the zoo, were I could show her everything that being a kid has to offer! Little did I know, I had to wait until she’s old enough to actually understand everything! Since she will two in May, now seems like the best time to start the fun..with Easter! Some good food, family, and a visit from the Easter Bunny should kick things off right! Maybe next year, Colt will be able to join in on the fun.

I wanted to share some Easter ideas that I found this week, that I plan on trying.

First on my list, are these cuties…

Peep Deviled Eggs (compliments of Pinterest)

We love to eat in our family. I’m pretty sure everyone just shows up to eat…unless there are presents involved.  This year, the most amazing chef I will be cooking! These deviled eggs are so cute, and just as easy. Boil your eggs, and cut the top off instead of slicing long ways. Prepare your filling how you like it, stuff the eggs, and place the top back on. You can use triangular slices of carrots as noses, and bits of black olives as eyes.

Next is the cake!

Easter Bunny Cake!

I actually found this on a search in Yahoo! and my mother in law told me how easy it was. Bake two round cakes. Put one in the center for the face, then cut two half moons inwardly into the second round cake. Place the middle under the face for a bow-tie, and the two outer pieces on top for ears! I am planning on doing this with a carrot cake recipe I found, and doing a homemade cream cheese icing.  I wanted to wait to post the recipe for the cake until I personally tried it though!

Easy Decorations:

These were actually made by my cousin Karrie, and are so cute, I can’t wait to make them! All you have to do is mix one cup of liquid starch and half a cup of flour. You will also need embroidery floss, and water balloons. Blow up the water balloons (with air, not water) until they are egg-shaped. Unroll your embroidery floss, and press it into the glue mixture you already made. Wrap the gooey string around the balloon, and allow several hours to dry. Then, pop the balloon once it dries. I’ve also seen someone hang these on a string as garland!

As you can see I’ve been playing around on Pinterest for Easter ideas..and I just loved this. Very refreshing to see a change in the usual flower bouquets. On the left, are just regular colored eggs. Obviously you wouldn’t want to leave this bouquet out too long! On the left is a vase filled with M&Ms, and peeps. This one you could really get creative with, mixing and matching colors, or treats!

Last on my list for now! No one likes to eat a big meal, then have to do the dishes…Here is a fun way to dress up your plastic ware:

I will continue my search for Easter goodies…and post my recipes later! I hope everyone has a safe, and happy holiday.

Before I forget! We are in the running to become a Top Mommy Blog! On the top right sidebar there is a picture of a juggling woman..you can click her to vote for us, or at the banner on the bottom! You can come back daily to vote. Once you click, that’s all you have to do! Votes are tallied by how many clicks from my site each day. I also wanted to thank all of my followers who have been so supportive.

Thank you! Happy Easter!

 

Salisbury Steak February 26, 2012

Filed under: Favorite Recipes,Main Dish Recipe — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 12:13 pm
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I’m always looking for good ground beef recipes. There are so many variations and different ways to cook it, it’s pretty hard to mess up…and that’s good for me:) I originally found this recipe on the allrecipes website. Here is the original recipe:

Salisbury Steak

  • 1 can of Campbell’s French and Onion Soup
  • 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. mustard powder

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, mix together 1/3 cup of the French and Onion Soup with the ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, salt and pepper. Shape into 6 patties. In a large skillet, brown both sides of the patties. Pour off any excess fat.
  2. In a smaller bowl, whisk flour with remaining soup until combined. Add ketchup, water and mustard powder. Pour over the meat in skillet. Cover and let simmer for 20-30 minutes stirring occasionally.

Although this recipe is pretty good as is, I cut down on the ketchup the second time around. I also added a sliced onion to the skillet,  and let it simmer with the patties. So wonderful! Enjoy:)

 

Brownie Chocolate Chip Cheesecake January 26, 2012

Filed under: Deserts — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 9:53 am
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This was my second attempt at cheesecake, and was it great! I wrote in my last cheesecake post, that I totally disregarded the springform pan listed in the recipe, and almost had a huge mess in the oven because of it! Come to find out..Brandon’s grandparents are frequent readers of my site:) and surprised me with a new springform pan! I couldn’t wait to try this recipe:

Brownie Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

originally from allrecipes.com

  • 1 (19.5 ounce) box of Pillsbury Classic Traditional Fudge Brownies
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 3 large eggs (+ 2 more for the brownies)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • Whipped topping, or other favorite garnish

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 inch springform pan.
  2. Mix brownies as directed on the package, and spread evenly in pan. Bake for 35 minutes, or until set.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Slowly beat in the sweetened condensed milk. Add the eggs and vanilla, mix well. Stir in mini chocolate chips.
  4. Reduce oven heat to 300 degrees.
  5. Pour cheesecake mix evenly on top of cooked brownies. Bake 50 minutes, or until set. Cool completely, then remove the sides to the springform pan. Garnish as desired. Store covered in the refrigerator.

A couple of things I noticed with mine: the brownies were a little hard towards the edge.. I probably would have reduced the cooking time a couple of minutes. The cheesecake on the other hand, I almost had to double its cooking time. But it was worth it! It took nearly 2 hours to cool, but I then garnished it with cool whip, and more mini chocolate chips. Everyone loved it. Thank you Memaw and Pawpaw for the pan!

 

Turtle Cheesecake January 16, 2012

Filed under: Deserts — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 9:32 am
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Hey everyone! I know I haven’t posted in a while.. but I had a little spare time this weekend to try out a few new recipes. I’ve never been a baker. Somehow or another I always screw up somewhere. In this one.. I completely ignored the type of pan I was supposed to use. I almost had a disaster in the oven, but I caught it at the last-minute, and it turned out amazing! Brandon loved it, and I will definitely be making this again. I originally found this recipe at www.blogchef.net.

Turtle Cheesecake

  • 1 3/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate graham cracker crumbs, crushed
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp. chocolate syrup
  • 2 tbsp. caramel sundae sauce
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Grease a springform pan. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.Combine chocolate graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of the springform pan, and 1 inch up the sides.
  2. In a large bowl, beat softened cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Add sugar, eggs, lime juice, and vanilla extract. Beat together until fully mixed, and smooth.
  3. Microwave 1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips in 10 second intervals until melted. Add two cups of cream cheese mixture into chocolate chips, and stir to combine.
  4. Spoon batters alternatively into graham cracker crust. Start with the cream cheese mixture, then then chocoalte chip mixture, then end with the cream cheese mixture.
  5. Bake for one hour and fifteen minutes, or until cheese cake is done. The center will move slightly when done. Cool completely. Once cooled, top with chocolate syrup, carmel syrup, chocolate chips, and chopped pecans.

Like I said above, I totally ignored the part about the springform pan, which is a two peice pan that is about two to three inches deep. The sides of the pan can be removed, as well as the bottom if needed. The baker that I am, thought cheesecake..pie plate. It went well until I added the batter into the crust, and realized I had way to much..then I googled springform pan. Anyways, I quickly figured out that much batter in my little pie plate wouldn’t work, so I had to remove some, and continue baking. It still turned out wonderful, just wanted to share my mishap so none of you do the same! Let me know what you think:)

 

Campbell’s Easy Beef Enchiladas January 10, 2012

Filed under: Favorite Recipes,Main Dish Recipe — Peaches and Pumpkins @ 9:15 pm
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If you haven’t noticed already, I’m not very adventurous when it comes to cooking. I love trying new recipes..but not at my wallet’s expense. I love pantry meals, or things I can switch up the ingredients with things I already have. We usually have a lot of ground deer meat here, and I like to substitute that for ground beef. This enchilada recipe has become one of our favorites. The best thing is.. you can really put whatever you want in this..and it will still turn out good. I will put the original recipe, and tell you at the bottom some changes I’ve made:) Enjoy!

From Campbell’s Kitchen

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 (1 ounce) packet of taco seasoning mix or burrito seasoning mix
  • 1 (16 ounce) can refried beans
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can Campbell’s Condensed Cheddar Cheese Soup
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup long grain white rice, cooked
  • 12 flour tortillas (10 inch)
  • 1 1/2 cups prepared enchilada sauce
  • shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Brown the ground beef, and drain off any fat. Stir in seasoning mix, beans, soup, onion and rice (optional).
  2. Spread a little of the enchilada sauce on the bottom of a 3 quart baking dish to keep from sticking. Divide the beef mixture among the tortillas. Roll up the tortillas and place, seam side down, in baking dish. Pour remaining enchilada sauce over tortillas and sprinkle with cheese.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly.

Now.. like I said, you can really put whatever you want in these..and they’re still awesome. I’ve used ground deer meat. Last week I didn’t have any taco seasoning..so I used salsa instead, and put in a little hot sauce (one of my favorites yet). I have also substituted the cheddar cheese soup with velveeta cheese. I found out if you cover the tortillas completely with the enchilada sauce, they won’t get crunchy..which can sometimes happen in the oven. You can just play around with the recipe to suit your tastes..Let me know what you do to yours!