Posted by: frizbeemom | December 17, 2012

Cat’s Meow Quilts

Cat's Meow Quilts

This is my work in progress for December 2012 for stitching the Cat’s Meow Quilts, designed by Barbara Baatz. This is an oldie, published in the Oct 1995 issue of Leisure Arts. I let my stitching settle for a couple years, while I worked on my MBA, weight loss and spending more time with my girls. I recently picked it up again, after they go to bed at night, as I am in hiatus from my studies. Fresh new perspective, and I realized that I had missed it!

Posted by: frizbeemom | May 14, 2011

My First Poached Egg

My first poached egg!  Poaching an egg always seemed a little overwhelming, and I stuck with scrambling, frying or preparing sunny-side up. It’s really not as big of a deal as it would seem.  This site walks you through it quite painlessly.

And this was a dish of polenta, cremini mushrooms and a poached egg, with a bit of salsa and Greek yogurt on the side. It was quite delicious! It was mostly taken from this recipe, with a few very minor changes.  My kids judged it a 10 out of 10 or 100 out of 100, which is quite high praise from them! And now that we are sauntering down the path to vegetarianism, it even qualified for those of us with those restrictions!

Posted by: frizbeemom | December 26, 2010

Wrapping Up The Holidays

Alton Brown’s Iced Cinnamon Buns were FABULOUS, as always.  It’s a recipe that is soo worth the work involved. They have an intense cinnamon flavor and the dough is soft and moist and the buttery cinnamon mixture topped with cream cheese icing is gooey and all this goodness just melts in your mouth. Ultra yum.

I also made a batch of my mother’s very own Mennonite family recipe of mincemeat pie. If you think you are not a fan of mincemeat, think again. This is not the knock-off version of mincemeat sold on store shelves that does not even deserve the effort of being put into a premade pastry pie shell and baked in the oven. This fabulous homemade goodness is real ground beef, apples, oranges, lemons, dark cherries, cooked raisins, molasses, lots of spices and let me just be quiet before I give away the family recipe. LOL. This batch made six pies, and I made three for my father-in-law, who definitely appreciates this concoction. We had a pie ourselves on Christmas Eve/Christmas morning and there are two pie fillings sitting in my freezer waiting for a special occasion. This took two hours to make, and by the end I remembered why I don’t do it very often. 🙂 A lot of hard work.

I also made homemade shrimp bisque on Christmas Eve. It was my first time shelling and deveining shrimp, but it won’t be the last. This soup was so so so good. Unfortunately it was all sipped up before I got my camera out.

At the family get together on Christmas, my husband’s uncle had made this vegetarian lasagna made out of butternut squash and roasted chestnuts. Every bite was savored and I will be begging for that recipe. We had a table full of food, complete with more pies and candy, cookies and Emeril’s Gingerbread with Spiced Creme Anglaise Sauce brought by yours truly. His wife sent home her homemade candy, which I justly describe as “the bag of crack.” I tried to take one piece, and I ended up inhaling almost half the bag. I can’t deny toffee on a good day, but toffee in a bag of crack sets off all my triggers and all of my old eating habits came flying out, hand to mouth, hand to mouth, over and over again. I felt bloated, fat and stubby, and a bit dim-witted and sluggish to boot. I knew it was time for the holidays to end.

I gathered up the leftover homemade cookies and the bit left in the bag of crack and asked my dear husband to PLEASE hide it. I know not where he went. I can’t know. Or I will be licking the remains of this bag of crack. I made myself this cup of black tea to send messages to my brain that the crunchy, natural, tree-huggin’, thinking-of-being-a-vegetarian, healthy, working out and starting to focus on running, happy with much less emotional baggage Cheryl is back in control. I sauteed some veggies and made this new go-to recipe of quinoa that my husband and I have become instant fans of. So the holidays are wrapped up. They were merry, yummy and full of special food. But the trick is that it was special holiday food. Food that is a treat and not to be indulged in for our everyday lives. Food that is special to help remind us of the specialness of the holidays: family, love, spending time together, bonding, laughter, love, good cheer, giving and receiving… But there comes a time when you wrap up the memories in a tidy little box, with the leftover gift wrap strewn over the floor around the Christmas tree, and you get back to healthy nutritious eating. That time came for me. Try this recipe and see if you enjoy it as much as we do!

Quinoa with Sauteed Apples and Almonds


  • 1  cup  uncooked quinoa
  • 2  teaspoons  olive oil, divided
  • 1  chopped onion
  • 2 med or 3 small carrots,  finely diced
  • 1  garlic clove, minced
  • 2  cups  organic vegetable or chicken broth (such as Swanson Certified Organic)
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
  • 2-3 teaspoons curry
  • 2 small or 1 med-large Granny Smith apple,  finely diced unpeeled
  • 3  tablespoons  almonds, toasted (slivered or a handful of whole)
  • 1/8  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper


Place quinoa in a fine sieve; place sieve in a large bowl. Cover quinoa with water. Using your hands, rub grains together for 30 seconds; rinse and drain. Repeat procedure twice. Drain well.

Heat 1 teaspoon oil in saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, and garlic to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until onion is tender and carrot begins to brown. Stir in broth, quinoa, salt, and cinnamon and curry; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat. Fluff with a fork; keep warm.

Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add apple to pan; sauté 7 minutes or until apple begins to brown. Add apple, almonds, and pepper to quinoa, tossing to combine. Serve warm.

I want to keep playing with this recipe, to see if I can even make it better, but we really enjoy this version. And remember, quinoa is a highly nutritious food and also considered a complete protein. Serve with a fresh salad on the side, and you have a nutritious, healthy meal!

Posted by: frizbeemom | November 14, 2010

Orange Gingerbread Pancakes – With A Healthy Twist

I was in search of a recipe for gingerbread pancakes, with a healthy twist. I wanted to have brunch with my family without going off of my “diet”. And healthier versions of their favorite meals are good for them as well as me. So I googled a few of the variations out on the web and came up with my own twist. I will keep tweaking this recipe, as it didn’t quite suit me, but it suited me closely enough when I put  it into my Recipe Builder and came up with only 2 WW pts for having eaten two pancakes! I topped the pancakes with a lemon cream cheese whip, but to be honest, next time I will take the hit of a few extra calories and make a real cream sauce!


  • 1/2 cup Quaker Oats unprocessed bran
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Egg Beaters egg whites
  • 7 tbsp fat free milk
  • 3 tbsp molasses
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 4 tsp Splenda and brown sugar blend
  • 1/4 cup brewed black coffee, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest


Mix together dry ingredients. (You can do this the night before).

In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients and brown sugar then add to the dry, mixing until just moist.
Let stand for five minutes.

Heat GREASED griddle or pan while the pancake batter is standing.  Pour batter onto hot griddle and cook until bubbles appear and pop. Flip only once and cook until golden brown on both sides.

Posted by: frizbeemom | November 8, 2010

Turkey, Bulgur and Eggplant Pilaf

I am an eggplant manic, so this dish is fabulous for any eggplant freaks like me!


  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 med. onion, chopped
  • 2 med. garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 lb lean ground turkey breast
  • 1 Tbsp canned tomato paste
  • 1 tsp Thai red curry paste
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 small eggplant (1/2-3/4 lb), unpeeled and cubed into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups light & fat free chicken broth
  • 1 cup uncooked bulgur, wheat
  • 1 cup frozen green peas

Heat the oil in a nonstick Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is very tender, a few minutes. Add the turkey and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until browned, about 8 minutes.

Stir the tomato paste, curry paste, cinnamon, cumin, allspice, and salt into the Dutch oven. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the eggplant and tomatoes. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat, until the eggplant and tomatoes begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the broth and bulgur; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the mixture thickens and the liquid is almost absorbed, about 25 minutes. Stir in the peas and heat through.  Serve at once. Yields 2 cups per serving, about 4 servings.

I am only starting to cook with bulgur wheat. Any favorite recipes to share? Anyone else prefer this to rice?

Posted by: frizbeemom | November 7, 2010

Spinach and Mushroom Frittata with Goat Cheese

If you are in search of that nice Sunday morning brunch, you have come to the right place! Especially if you have a hankering for a healthy egg recipe with some nice vegetables and a bit of cheese. This is slightly adapted from Weight Watchers Healthy Cooking Basics Recipe Cookbook and comes out to 4 pts per serving. This works equally well with goat cheese or feta cheese.


  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup Egg Beaters egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 (8 ounce) container sliced mushrooms
  • 1 small thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 (6 ounce) bag baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup fat-free garlic-onion croutons
  • 2 plum tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  1. Whisk together eggs, egg whites, 1/4 tsp salt and pepper in large bowl.
  2. Spray 10-inch nonstick ovenproof skillet with nonstick spray and set over medium heat. Add mushrooms and remaining 1/4 tsp salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and most of liquid evaporates, about 8 minutes. Add red onion. Add spinach, in batches if necessary, and cook, stirring constantly, until wilted and most of liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes.
  3. Preheat broiler.
  4. Sprinkle vegetable mixture with croutons; pour egg mixture evenly over croutons. Reduce heat and cook until eggs are set, 7-8 minutes (but do not stir).
  5. Arrange tomato slices on top of eggs; sprinkle evenly with cheese. Place skillet under broiler and broil frittata 5 inches from heat until top is lightly browned, about 2-3 minutes. Cut into 4 wedges.

I would have liked to take a picture of the finished plate, but it was gobbled up before I remembered!

This is considered 4 servings, 184 cals each, 9 grams of fat, 2 grams of fiber, 17 grams of protein.

Posted by: frizbeemom | November 6, 2010

Blueberry Coconut Baked Oatmeal

I am in search of baked oatmeal recipes that include a lot of flavor, but not as much fat and sugar. I made a version of blueberry baked oatmeal from ideas from various recipes and tried to make my own recipe. This version turned out too sweet. So following is a very similar recipe that I will try next time. Cross your fingers and let’s hope it is good! The oatmeal we had today was actually quite good if you have a sweet tooth but I prefer mine a bit less sugary. Perk a fresh pot of coffee on the side, and there isn’t a better way to jumpstart your day!


  • canola oil cooking spray
  • 1 medium banana, sliced
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup Splenda brown sugar blend, lightly packed
  • 3 cups rolled oats (I used mixture of steel oats and quick cooking oats)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seed
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • pinch each ground nutmeg, cloves, and salt
  • 2 cups fat free milk
  • 1 Tbsp margarine or butter, melted
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly coat a baking dish with cooking spray. Layer the banana slices over the bottom of the dish and top with the frozen blueberries. Set aside.

Mix applesauce, eggs, and sugar in one bowl.
Mix oatmeal, baking soda, salt, coconut, ground flax seed and spices in another bowl.
Mix two bowls together, add milk and vanilla extract and butter, mix well. Pour on top of blueberry and banana mixture.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes, or until browned

If you don’t have ground flax seed on hand, I would add a different source of unprocessed fiber, whatever is your preference or found stocked in your cupboards!

Posted by: frizbeemom | June 3, 2010

What A Ride!

This design is “What A Ride!” designed by Ruby Slippers. “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, margarita in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and screaming WOOHOO what a ride!” I started this in January 2010. And, I finished it in May 2010, framed it and gave it as a gift. The fabric is 32 ct. Carnival Belfast by Picture This Plus. The writing is in 100% silk, hand-dyed as Luteousness from The hand-dyed fabric is so beautiful and makes a striking background. Love this piece and the person it was gifted to!

Posted by: frizbeemom | January 19, 2010

January 2010: A New Start!

My new start for January 2010 is “What a Ride!” designed by Ruby Slipper Needlework Designs. I ❤ her stuff! It’s not a lot to see yet, but I wanted to get the details down before I forget. I totally changed the color scheme for this… because I wanted to. The fabric is 32 ct. Carnival Belfast by Picture This Plus. The writing is in 100% silk, hand-dyed as Luteousness from Check back later to see my progress!!! Enjoying this piece a lot so far, and it stitches much faster than I anticipated, as I started it yesterday.

Posted by: frizbeemom | January 10, 2010

Away In A Manger

Next in the Christmas series is “Away In A Manger”, also part of America’s Best Loved Christmas Carols in Cross Stitch. While this one was not my favorite of the series, my kids loved it and picked it for me to do, so I loved it too. And I grew attached to this piece. But I made the fatal flaw of leaving all the backstitching til the end, when I was already past my self-imposed deadline of needing to be finished. It drove me crazy!!!

This is done on Picture This Plus Mystic Lugana fabric. In addition to a very slight change of fabric color that it called for, I also changed the lettering to white. The brown didn’t show up well enough. The white actually shows up better than it does on the picture, although I just couldn’t find that perfect color, even after many tries and much frustrated frogging. I also added beading, which it didn’t call for, but it needed just a bit of bling!

And may I never stitch another manger scene!

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