The last few days have been unusually busy and exhausting. Even with no Friday night practice or Saturday game this weekend, I came to tonight feeling drained. Dinner had to be filling and simple. And, for my sanity, it had to be something no one would complain about. This recipe fits the bill. There are seldom any leftovers, but when there are, they make a great breakfast – just cook up an egg to your preference and voila! Or, you could toss in some green chile, scrambled egg and cheese and roll it all up in a tortilla (which is what my husband prefers). Anyway, for dinner, start by cubing up a large sweet potato (you could use two or three smaller ones, but I hate peeling the dang things). Then toss them into a hot skillet with some butter.
Turn the heat down to medium low or low (depending on how hot your burner is). Lid them and let them cook for a few minutes until they start to get brown. Stir them around and add 1/4-1/2 cup water to the pan and lid it again. When the water cooks off and the potatoes are mostly tender, add the sausage (which you can cut up before you start cooking or while the potatoes are cooking).My usual grocery store has stopped carrying full sized links of the smoked sausage brand I like best. Thankfully they still carry it in bratwurst-size links and they work just fine for this recipe.
Season with salt, pepper, onion powder and chile powder. Cook until the sausage starts to brown and the potatoes are completely tender.
Before anyone asks, yes, those are canned green beans on the plate. Yes, I ate them AND served them to my family. No, I am not ashamed. They’re convenient, quick and reminiscent of my childhood. Of course, they taste distinctly better if you add a little bacon grease, grated garlic (on my microplane so it is superfine) and black pepper to the pan and let it get toasty before you add the green beans. Which just happens to be exactly what I did.
1 large or 2-3 small sweet potatoes
14-16 oz of your favorite smoked sausage
2 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon chile powder
Peel sweet potato and dice into 1/4″ cubes. Split sausage down the middle and cut into half moon shapes.
Heat non-stick skillet and butter over medium heat until hot. Add sweet potatoes, reduce heat and cover. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until potatoes start to brown. Stir, add water and replace lid. Cook until all water is gone and potatoes are mostly tender (5-10 minutes). Remove lid. Add sausage, salt, pepper, onion powder and chile. Continue cooking over medium low heat until sausage is brown and potatoes are tender.
You may start to notice that I make a lot of breakfast breads. I cook them both for my Sunday school class and also for my MOPS meetings. Today’s banana oatmeal muffins will travel with me to the first MOPS meeting of the year tomorrow. For two blessed hours, someone else will watch our children while we gather as women and nourish each others souls and stomachs. These really are easy to whip up, and aside from the stick of butter, not terribly bad for you.
Start by mixing up two really ripe bananas with a stick of softened butter and a 1/2 cup of sugar. I like to do this with a fork so that I can mash the banana up some, but still leave some chunks. It will look curdled, so don’t throw it out when you see this.
Add in a couple of eggs, some vanilla and buttermilk. Then add your flour, oatmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon and stir just until everything is incorporated. The more you stir it, the tougher and drier your muffins will be.
Scoop this slightly sticky batter evenly into 12 muffin cups. If you want them to come out of the pan perfectly (or if you aren’t using a silicone muffin tin), go ahead and spray with no stick spray or use muffin liners.
Bake for 15 minutes. They’ll puff up some, get ever so slightly brown and maybe even crack just a bit. Your house will smell like heaven. It will be hard, but let them cool before you remove them and start eating. They taste great, but it isn’t worth burning your hands and mouth (trust me, this is experience speaking). Besides, if you scorch your tastebuds with the first bite, you’ll miss out on the rest of that muffin (and the other 11, if you’re anything like me).
2 very ripe bananas
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk*
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 400*. Grease 12 muffin cups (or line with paper liners).
Mash together banana and butter with a fork. Stir in sugar (mixture will look curdled). Add in eggs, buttermilk* and vanilla. Add oatmeal, flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt and stir just until combined.
Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin cups. Bake at 400* for 15 minutes. Cool completely before removing from pans.
*If you don’t have buttermilk, you can substitute regular milk or add 1 teaspoon white vinegar or lemon juice to your measuring cup and fill to the 1/2 cup mark with milk.
Lots of people in the United States are sending their kids back to school today. My daughter is actually starting her 3rd week of first grade and I’m almost past wanting to cry when I drop her off. Every day except Friday I pack her lunch. Every day I offer peanut butter and jelly as a sandwich option and secretly hope that’s what she will choose. I mean, who doesn’t love sticky peanut butter and sweet jelly sandwiched between two slices of whole wheat bread? My daughter, that’s who. Peanut butter has never really been a favorite food of hers. It is one of mine though, and these muffins make it easy to share that love with in a format that is both portable and more refined than sandwich triangles. Peanut butter and jelly for breakfast? Yes, please.These super easy muffins start by mixing up a whole wheat batter packed with peanut butter flavor. It will be super thick, almost like drop biscuit dough. You use half the batter to partially fill 12 regular size muffin cups. Then, add a generous dollop of your favorite jelly or jam – I used seedless blackberry jam this time, but strawberry is excellent too. Then, top the jam with more batter. Before they go in the oven, they’ll look something like this.
If you’re not using a silicone muffin pan, you definitely want to use cupcake liners or grease your muffin tins before you start filling them up. Make sure you let the muffins cool before you take them out. You don’t want them to fall apart. This is one of the few times I make muffins and serve them room temperature rather than piping hot.
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 cup buttermilk*
1/3 cup honey**
1 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup jelly or jam
Preheat oven to 350*. Prepare muffin tins by greasing or lining with paper cupcake liners. Stir together flour, salt and baking powder. In a separate bowl, mix together buttermilk, eggs, honey, peanut butter and melted butter. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir just until combined.
Fill 12 muffin cups about 1/3 full (about 1/4 cup batter). Since batter is so thick, you may need to use your fingers to press it out until it covers the bottom of the muffin cup. Spoon about 2 teaspoons of jelly into the center of each muffin cup. Top with remaining batter. It is ok to fill your muffin cups to the top. Make sure the batter covers the jelly. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until slightly browned on top. Remove pans from oven and let muffins cool completely before removing from pans.
*If you do not have buttermilk, you can add 2 teaspoons white vinegar to your measuring cup and then fill to the 1 cup line with regular milk and let sit for two minutes. Or, you can just use regular milk.
**This batter is more savory than sweet. I like the balance of savory muffin and sweet jam filling. However, if you would like a sweeter muffin, go ahead and double the amount of honey or add a few Tablespoons of white sugar.