Wednesday, February 26, 2014

homemade enchilada sauce

Nine times out of ten, I am usually thankful when I've planned to prepare a really great dish and get home from gathering all the necessary ingredients from the store, only to realize I've forgotten one.  

Well, actually, first I'm mad.  

But then I am thankful, because more times than not, I am able to scrounge enough things together to make the missing ingredient from scratch, and it's way better than store-bought. So goes this enchilada sauce.

I wish I could have gotten pictures of the casserole calling for the sauce, but it went so fast I wasn't able to save even a piece to snap a shot the next day.  Chicken Tamale Casserole will be prepared again soon, I can assure you, and I will make sure to share the recipe.  

I highly recommend pulling this together, doubling the batch, and keeping it on hand for your favorite Mexican meals.  I can't believe the flavor difference in this and the store brands, and it is such a quick fix.  "Muy" yummy!

Homemade Enchilada Sauce
  • 2 tbsp vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 4 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/3 tsp oregano
  • 2 cups chicken broth
~ Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.  

~ Add flour and stir together over the heat for one minute.  

~ Stir in the remaining seasonings.  

~ Gradually add in the broth, whisking constantly to remove lumps.  

~ Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes until thick.

Recipe from Gimme Some Oven.

Friday, February 21, 2014

the one

It is official.  After nearly six months and loads of prayers, we have finally found our house.


Let me rephrase that... our home.

Big decisions are not my favorite thing to make.  I worry.  I stew.  I obsess.  More than anything, I long to know what God's will is and really prefer He just leave me a sticky note with His answer of choice.  I'm pretty sure I'd heed it. 

But apparently God is not in the sticky note business.

Nonetheless, as I reflect on the journey we've just completed, God's fingerprints can be found everywhere.  So I'm crazy about the story of finding this home. 

I know in my last post I mentioned the whole planning and God laughing thing, and it's still curious to me how we kill ourselves trying to complete a self-fulfilling prophecy.  So many times we do this only to find door after closed door and wall after great wall keeping us from what we were 100% sure was the plan.  And then... if we're only still for a moment... just a moment... He speaks.  And it's not at all according to the plan.  Hallelujah!

At 2:30 AM the night before we were to make the decision on this home, I was certain my inability to go back to sleep was God's way of calling me to Him.  Satan, once again, had a hold of me with the whole worrying, stewing, and obsessing thing.  But despite his efforts, at about 3:00, I opened up my reading for the day, said a prayer that the words would be relevant, and found this verse waiting on me... 

But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help.  He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears. Ps. 18:6  

And verse after verse, everything I turned to following, was an affirmation that I was hearing His voice.  Through my tears I couldn't believe what I was reading, as if God Himself were sitting right next to me and speaking the words to even me.  "I've given you My answer... just believe." 

I won't bore you with the details and ins and outs of our home search, but I'm 100% sure this home was God's plan.  We asked for answers, and He gave them to us... through friends' words, through the sunset on the evening we first visited, through scripture, and in so many other ways I can't name them all.  Sticky note or not, I choose to believe.

Today, we take our youth group to Gatlinburg through the weekend for a conference.  When we return, we will begin unloading boxes and moving into our new home.  I'm pretty sure the boys and I will be racing to get in the door to retrieve our long-lost toys and kitchen items, respectively...  

I'm doubly sure I'll win.  

I can't wait to share with you what will be cooking in the new and improved Lazy Daisy Kitchen, and I'm oh-so-ready to fill it with the people I love.  

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

salted butter pecan spice cookies


Have you ever heard the Yiddish proverb, "Man plans, God laughs?"  It's actually based on scripture, for those of you who didn't know.  And speaking for this girl and her life lately, God must be hysterically doubled over, bellowing a holy belly laugh, I can assure you.  Life over the last weeks has come and gone, not at all going the way I had envisioned.  But I can see God all over it - laughing or not - and so I'm OK.

I am dying to talk about our house situation, but I have promised myself I won't share until it's absolutely - 100% - a done deal.  If all goes according to plan, that is supposed to happen in a little less than two weeks.  

So, for whatever reason, knowing now we might be just days away from getting into our next home, I am almost paralyzed in the kitchen.  I'm starting to dream about what it's going to be like to have space and be reunited with my long-lost gadgets... to have spices at my fingertips and not a flight of stairs up... pantry items in the pantry and not on the third shelf in the linen closet with the... well... linens.

I'm counting on this, friends.  

I have no idea what posting will be like over the next couple of weeks.  We have barely been home to cook, let alone cook and take pictures while I can still have the natural light that works FAR better for photography than house lamps at 8:00 in the evening.   I will do my best, though.  I promise.

This is a quick and easy cookie recipe I modified to our liking.  With a spice cake mix in the pantry (linen closet) that wasn't used for it's original intent and going to expire sooner than later, I was happier with this sweet treat than I probably would have been with the first recipe anyway.  After all... why plan?

Salted Butter Pecan Spice Cookies
makes about 40 cookies
  • 1 Duncan Hines Spice Cake mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup butterscotch baking chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • light sprinkling of Kosher salt
~ Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

~ Mix together cake mix, eggs, oil, and vanilla until thoroughly combined and smooth.

~ Stir in baking chips and pecans.

~ Line baking sheets with parchment paper and drop by rounded teaspoonsful about 2
    inches apart.  I used my small cookie scooper.

~ Sprinkle dough lightly with a pinch of salt for each pan.
~ Bake 8-10 minutes until golden.  Let cool one minute and place on cooling rack.