Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Old Chicago

Last night, Angela & I went to Iowa City for a Post Secret event. We were supposed to go to this neat bar & deli, Quinton's, but we couldn't find it! : ( I was highly disappointed - I'd looked at the menu online & found a turkey avacado cream cheese sammich that I really wanted to try! : ) Ah well, I'll try to get there eventually. I think it'd be worth the drive! The Post Secret lecture certainly was!
Instead, we went to Old Chicago. It was really delicous! I had the grilled chicken & spinach ravioli. I only had a little bit of it there, had to take all of it home, because of the appetizer.

Italian Nachos. Oh. My. Heck!!!! Sooooo good! Pasta chips, covered in mozzerella, sausage, pepperoni, banana peppers, w/ a marinara sauce to dip. I would highly recommend this dish! Give it a try & let me know what you think. : )

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Sunday Surprise!

Hello everyone! I was telling Carrie about what I was making my kids for dinner. So she invited me to share it with everyone. Why not, right?

I'm all about simple things. Today was no exception. I opened the freezer and thought, "What should I make for dinner?" There's a ton of veggies up there. Some tater tots. Some hash browns. Some hot dogs. Hmmm...... I know! A casserole!

So here it is, folks! *laugh* I know, I know....feel free to call it what you want.

Sunday Surprise Casserole!


1/2 package hot dogs
1/2 lb Velveeta, cubed
1/2 cup butter or margarine, separated into two 1/4 cup portions
1 package frozen vegetables
2-3 cups frozen hashbrowns
6-8 slices American cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a baking dish (9x13 glass dish works great), layer hashbrowns in a single layer along the bottom, adding or subtracting as much as necessary to form a single layer. In a large pot, 1/4 cup butter/margarine and cubed Velveeta and heat under medium heat. Once butter and Velveeta begins melting, add frozen vegetables and stir. Do not stir constantly, but stir enough so the Velveeta does not stick to the bottom of the pot and coats the vegetables.

Cut hot dogs into medallions, add them to the vegetable/cheese combination, and stir.

In a microwave safe dish, melt the other 1/4 cup butter/margarine (45 seconds in a dish large enough to accommodate hashbrowns). Once melted, add the hashbrowns you measured out in the baking dish and stir to coat with the butter. Spray baking dish with butter flavored cooking spray liberally and add hashbrowns back to the dish, smoothing out to that single layer.

Spread the vegetable/cheese/hot dog combination on top of the buttered hashbrowns evenly. Sprinkle with pepper and salt. Add slices of cheese across the entire top, making sure to not overlap. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil and bake 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, uncover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Allow to rest 5 minutes, or until sauce begins to thicken.

Makes 6-8 servings

Sounds easy enough, right? I'll give you even more suggestions, as this is the gist of the recipe. If you have little kids, I recommend slicing the hot dogs lengthwise before cutting into medallions (basically, cut the medallions in half, it's just easier to do it lengthwise first). Also, I prefer to use Oscar Meyer hot dogs-- only because they come in the two packs. *laugh* Saves me from having to eat hot dogs two days in a row because the entire package is thawed out.

Keep in mind that I completely made this recipe up. I figure anyone can make a casserole. *laugh* Even easier? Take a package of au gratin potatoes, add frozen vegetables and hot dogs and bake according to directions on the package of potatoes. I'd have done that, but I don't have au gratin potatoes in the pantry. :)

I hope everyone enjoys!

Saturday, 15 August 2009


This is one of my new favorites. Of course, it's not a new restaurant, just a new discovery for me! Riefe's has been a QC staple for many years, as you can see by the banner above.

They start you out with a bread basket, including rolls & a delicious crumb cake. There isn't a picture included presently because for some reason Blogger won't let me upload it. So, I'm going to be happy with the pictures I HAVE uploaded & leave it at that for now! : ) Leyton really enjoys the crumb cake, too!

Next, we have their excellent soups. This week's was cream of spinach, which I admit I was unsure about. I love raw spinach for salads, but am not really a fan of cooked spinach. However, soup or salad came w/ my meal, and I definitely didn't want the salad, so soup it was! It turned out to be a pleasant surprise, as it was very tastey. Creamy and the spinach wasn't bitter.

Leyton ordered a cheeseburger kids meal, which comes with Jello. Sometimes he likes the whipped cream, and other times not so much, so Mom smartly ordered it on the side. He only ate a little of it - there was so much food, that wasn't a problem! - so I got to finish it, and it was cherry and yummy! I don't know what they do to it, but they make very good Jello!

I ordered a Crazy burger & fries. I'm not sure what makes it "crazy." *laugh* It's a cheeseburger with bacon & tomato (and lettuce, but not for me!). Riefe's fries are the BEST! I don't know what they season them with when they fry 'em, but it's superb. They are just the right amount of crispy, too. Add a little salt & pepper, some ketchup for dipping & voila! Deliciousness.

This restaurant is also very reasonably prices. Bread, soup, burger, fries & soda for less than $10! AAAANNNNND ... it's a Pepsi place! : )
Happy eating, blog buddies! Until next time, keep trying new things. : )

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Work cookout & Linda's party

Everyone tore into the potato salad & fruit!

Not to be sexist, but the men of the management team did an EXCELLENT job grilling burgers & brats for us. Mike soaked the brats in beer & onions & they were GOOD! : )

Tonight, Carol did the grilling, and she did an excellent job, as well! My friend Tina (pictured above at the table) gave me some delicious meat & I grabbed a package for tonight's cookout. I knew it was steak, but I didn't realize how big they were! Turned out pretty tastey! Grilled food is really the best. The potato salad, corn & scalloped potatoes turned out yummy as well!
More on the actual party'll be in the other blog.

Steak steak steak. I could potentially eat it every week! : )

We surprised Linda w/ this cake. : ) Carol also made some homemade ice cream & chocolate mousse for dessert. It was a great food night!!! And great time spent w/ friends as well.

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Texas Road House

Tonight, mi mama & I went to TRH for dinner. She called a little after 5 & asked if I wanted to meet her there for some steak that we'd both been craving lately! : ) We got to witness the line dance to ... erm... IDK what the name is - I Played Chicken w/ a Train? Something like that. Anyway, it was neat!

The food was so delicious that I forgot to take a picture of it! *laugh* That pile of plates contained some delicious honey bread & cinnamon butter, apple sauce, a DELICIOUS steak w/ mushrooms, and a loaded sweet potato. : ) I have to say, while I enjoy steak from almost anywhere, TRH has some of the BEST beef around. You can even pick out exactly which steak you want. Heh. We didn't, but I think it's neat that you can.
Next time I'll try to remember to take the pictures BEFORE I scarf everything down. *laugh*
Until next time - where's your favorite place to have steak? : )

Sunday, 2 August 2009

more enchillada & quesadilla fun

Los Agaves
It's delicious! My general meal lately is - chips & cheese dip, cheese enchilladas and a quesadilla. Usually I get beef & cheese, but last night I got chicken for a change of pace. Also got a side of guac, which was spicy but oh so good!!!!
For dessert, we went to Maggie Moo's for ice cream. I had mocha w/ white chocolate chips, which was delicious! Leyton picked "green" which turned out to be cool mint, and added Teddy Grahams & gummy bears. Anthony had red velvet cake with some chocolate add-ins. Mom chose a strawberry banana shake. I had a bit of that, as well, and it was a keeper!

I really enjoy being out with my family for good food & visiting! : ) I hope you'll enjoy the pictures!