Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Weekly Dinner Challenge - Week 5

Hello! Sorry there was no week 4 challenge last week. Naomi is in a terrible terrible two's phase right now so life around our little house has been hectic lately! So this post might be a little long, I apologize! (You can learn about my "challenge" goals in my first week's post HERE.)

Last week I did do a challenge, however it didn't turn out the greatest. I made another batch of pulled pork in my slow cooker. I had gotten a large pork shoulder for less than $5.00 so I threw it in with the last of the Kraft BBQ Sauce that I got for free a while back. Cooked it for about 10 hours and it turned out really moist and yummy! As a side dish I decided I wanted to make sweet potato oven fries, only problem, I had never bought sweet potatoes before so I didn't buy the right thing, I think they were just regular potatoes shaped like sweet potatoes, who knows! At any rate the fries turned out pretty good, just not super good, not blog-worthy anyway! I do plan to try them again, but with actual sweet potatoes next time! But dinner was under $7 and we had enough pork left over for the next night, so I steamed a little rice and it was great!

Since this week is so busy (not going to be home for dinners much) I was not planning a "challenge" per say, but when I realized I was out of teryaki sauce, I had to improvise and create! I didn't go to the grocery store either this week because we are not going to be home so I wanted to use things I already had.

I had the hubby grill up a couple of chicken breasts and I invented my own side dish. Here is what I did:

Cook 3 cups of rice
Chop up 1 cup of fresh brocoli
When rice is almost cooked, add brocoli to the rice, just place on top, it will steam
When rice is cooked and brocoli is steamed, stir in the following:
1/3 cup milk, 1 can Campbell's Cheddar Cheese soup, sprinkle garlic powder, salt & pepper
If you want, add a small handful of shredded cheddar for extra gooey rice
And Voila - Homemade Cheddar Brocoli Rice!

Everyone thought it turned out yummy and Naomi ate all of her's! We even finished it off for dinner tonight!

I actually did 2 challenges this week! Two in the same day even!

I have always wanted to try and make my own homemade pumpkin pie (not from a can) but I was always told it was very complicated and time consuming. Then I came across this article on one of my favorite money saving blogs last week and had to try it out! Pumpkins were only .19/lb at Smallwood's Harvest in Peshastin this weekend so we bought one especially for pumpkin puree!

I did just as the article instructed: clean, cut, scoop (with Naomi's help), microwave, blend to puree and done! I ended up with about 6 cups of fresh pumpkin puree! I couldn't wait to use it so since I didn't have the ingredients to make a pie I decided to make the pumpkin cookies listed on the article. The recipe only needed one cup of puree so I plan on making another batch of these later in the week and then will freeze the rest for Thanksgiving.

You can get the recipe for these cookies (which are SO SO good!) HERE. I also made the icing from the bottom of the recipe and they added a nice sweetness to the cookies. Trust me, this is a must make for fall!

What did you make this week? I am always looking for new challenging recipes! Feel free to comment!

Thanks go out to Money Saving Mom, Frugal Femina and Beautiful Century for their pumpkin posts and recipes!


  1. I bet that you could use your Pumpkin Puree to make some of the DownEast Maine Pumpkin Bread that I made for AllRecipes. I think that you only need 15 OZ or 2 cups. Let me know if you want the recipe.

  2. I love what you're doing on this blog Sam. A great way to encourage people to eat more vegies too. Nic.

  3. Hurray! I'm glad that you liked the pumpkin cookies! My kids gobble them up every time I make them. And I will have to try the homemade puree - I too had heard it was difficulty, but you make it sound doable. Thanks for visiting my blog! MIKI

  4. Those cookies were amazing! I can't wait to make another batch! Thanks for posting the recipe, its going into my "favorites"!