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Semi-Homemade Grilled Pizettas | Atlanta Area Moms Blog

Semi-Homemade Grilled Pizzettas

Let’s be honest, your summer is better spent cooling down by the pool, not holed up in a hot kitchen. So when it comes to mealtime, you need something easy to assemble and preferably grilled so even your husband can handle dinner. These pizzas can be thrown together quickly with ingredients from your local farmer’s […]

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August is National Peach Month :: How to Celebrate Our State Fruit

August is National Peach Month: How to Celebrate Our State Fruit

As a Georgian, there is nothing more patriotic than enjoying a plump, juicy peach. Although we claim it as our own, this lovely fruit dates back centuries to its origins in China and symbolizes luck, abundance, and protection. Since August is National Peach Month, and Georgia is the Peach State, let’s celebrate!  Here are a […]

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My Kitchen BFF – the Crockpot

I love to eat. And I love to know what I am eating. But, with a job, a kiddo, a hubby and some vague semblance of a life, there is not much time for cooking during the week. Enter my kitchen BFF – the crockpot.  Mine is the bigger oval size one – because if I am cooking, I am all about the leftovers, too.  

If you are unsure about this tool, allow me to explain. A little bit of chopping, mixing or layering in the pot itself, the prep of the liquid ingredients in a separate container happens after dinner (and kids in bed, etc).  In the morning, the crock goes into the base, the liquids are added, seasonings as needed and lid applied. Turn that baby on and get on with your day. Upon returning to your humble abode, VIOLA!  A hot meal, or at least a significant portion of one. Talk about feeling like a winner at 5:32 PM or 6:17 PM or 8:03 PM or whenever dinner is served.   

So, here is a very simple recipe to get you started; the name is silly, but it’s a full meal that pleases most palates. Serve with green salad – or applesauce when there is no time for chopping.  

(If y’all like this one, there are many more I can share. Let me know and I will continue to post them. I am 20+ years of well-versed in crockpot language – but I would love to learn more, too!) 

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Nothing says I love you better than Fondue

Nothing says I love you like fondue except, maybe, fondue times two!  Why decide between a velvety Velveeta-free pot of cheese bathing in wine and a crock of rich dark chocolate decadence when you can have both?  And both are equally adored by little, big, male, & female taste buds alike.  

Fondue for Valentine’s Day is probably as cliche as the girls-only fondue dinner tradition that started one February 14th back in college.  Admittedly, I was a little mournful for the passing of said tradition when I met my husband and had reason to put on something besides expandable sweatpants for the holiday.  Not that I would trade in my happy marriage for cheese and chocolate, but…  Seasons change and, much like on New Year’s Eve, I now find myself back in said sweatpants, celebrating with both the big and little man in my life.  

Truth be told, I have moved the fondue tradition to the Oscars; perhaps I’ll make a heart-shaped meatloaf like my Mom routinely made this year.  I highly recommend you host a fondue party, however.  It’s the perfect way to celebrate those you love this month, be it your girlfriends, husband, children, or just yourself!  Have each guest bring their favorite accompaniment for each fondue and get dipping.     

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Super Easy Super Bowl Recipe

As far as the Super Bowl goes, you can fall in to one of two categories – “Football Fanatic” 0r “I’m just here for the food and halftime show.” I personally fall into the latter category, except that I do have an invested interest in the Falcons because you have to support your home team. That’s just good manners.  

If you are looking for a super easy, fail proof Super Bowl snack, I’ve got just the recipe for you! 

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Super Easy Super Bowl Recipe | Atlanta Area Moms Blog

Super Easy Super Bowl Recipe

As far as the Super Bowl goes, you can fall in to one of two categories – “Football Fanatic” 0r “I’m just here for the food and halftime show.” I personally fall into the latter category, except that I do have an invested interest in the Falcons because you have to support your home team. […]

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Knock-Your-Socks-Off Whole Roasted Chicken

Chicken Prep 1

Yes, mamas… it’s that good — it sure as heck will knock your socks off. Whether you have two different pairs on or realize you’re wearing your husband’s, this crispy-skin chicken recipe is yummy and toddler approved. 

It is one of those easy meals that’s all prep and you can pop in the oven and forget about it! It also looks beautiful and would impress the socks off your friends too, if you served it while entertaining. It’s great for making ahead, which is why I usually prep during nap time. If you watch the sales, you can get a whole chicken really inexpensive. This one from Whole Foods was local organic and was less than $6 for the whole thing! 

I like to serve with Seeds of Change Quinoa and Brown Rice (this stuff is amazing — you place in the microwave and it’s done in 90 seconds!, but it would also be great with a salad.

(Current view of what my food prep usually looks like when baby doesn’t nap: dog cleaning up the Puff crumbs and baby scooting across the kitchen floor.)

Hollis

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Roasted Eggplant Dip with Pantry Gremolata

I love entertaining.  You would think I’d tire of it, since cooking for parties and events is my job, but I never do.  I love researching the perfect menu, making trips to five different stores for the right ingredients, and spending all day holed up in the kitchen preparing.  Dare I forget the moment, thirty minutes before anyone arrives, when you crack open a bottle of wine and start the celebration alone.  Except that you can’t really spend all day doing anything once you have a little one in tow. You generally end up frantic during the last minutes before your guests arrive, cursing the fact that nobody is home yet to help (ahem),  gulping down that glass of wine just to stay calm.          

 

Roasted Eggplant Dip

Entertaining as a mother is a double-edged sword.  On one hand it’s ideal because your child is obviously invited, can go to sleep at the proper time, and you don’t have to worry about driving home because hey, you’re already there!  On the other hand, said home is in a constant state of disarray. Every time something is put away it is immediately returned to the floor, sofa, dog dish. Use your imagination!  And you have to plan, shop for, and cook a nice meal.  Make that an especially nice meal, if it is what you do and want to continue doing for a living.       

 

After one too many transformations into a party prepping grump,  I have admittedly scaled back on the elaborate meals I prefer to serve at dinner parties.  One fortunate evening, the stars aligned (aka my son napped for an extra hour) and I found myself with copious time to sneak in an appetizer for the upcoming event!  Since I hadn’t actually planned to make anything, I scoured the pantry and thus, this eggplant dip came to be.  Not to worry, it doesn’t require much hands-on time.  While an extra hour can seem comparable to hitting the jackpot these days, there’s still that play mat to puzzle back together.

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