Crepes

DSC_0004The work load increases on the farm as the weather warms up.

The hours of daylight in the evening after school and work are the busiest, making it hard for the family to sit down for a meal.

One of my favorite meals for nights like these are crepes.

What’s a crepe? It’s a fancy word for a thin pancake that acts like a tortilla shell.

The batter can be mixed up in advance.  Then I stand at the stove and fry up fresh crepes to serve the troops as they file in from gardening, mowing, fixing fence, or bringing in the laundry.

For fillings I’ll set out whatever I can find in the fridge – left-over meat, cheese, rice, beans, lettuce, veggies. You can be creative with this and use up those bits of left-overs.  It’s always first come – first served on crepe night.

When they’ve had their fill of savory crepes – they can move on the sweet ones. I use the same batter but we fill it with fruit or pudding.

Combinations like strawberries, sour cream and brown sugar are favorites here.  Chocolate pudding and whipped cream is yummy, too! No pudding? Just throw some chocolate chips on your whipped cream and wrap it up!

Crepes

2 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup water
1 cup flour
3 tablespoons melted butter

Combine all the ingredients in the blender. Place the batter in the fridge for 1 hour. (You can skip this step – but the batter may tear some when you try to flip the crepes.  If I’m in a hurry – I just cook them since my crew doesn’t really care how they look!)

Heat a small non- stick pan. Add some butter and pour a spoonful of batter in the middle of the pan. Swirl it around to coat the pan. Cook for about 30 seconds and flip carefully with a spatula. Cook another 30 seconds and serve hot to hungry family members!

If you have batter left when the troops are fed, it can either be refrigerated for a few days to use later, or you can fry up the extra crepes and keep them in the fridge up to a week or the freezer up to a month.

Enjoy!

Waste Not, Want Not – Spaghetti

spaghettiMy youngest sister and her 6 kiddos- aged 13 to 3 – were here for some very fun-filled days recently.

Having that many extra bodies around made for a full house and a full table at meal times!

Every meal became an adventure as we tried to figure out how much food we needed to make to fill those hungry bellies.

Some meals we nailed – others meals we didn’t!

One meal we overshot was spaghetti. We ended up with an entire ice cream bucket full of left-over noodles!

I determined it would not go to waste. So as soon as our guests left, I started to plan.

Meal #1 Ham Alfredo (with spaghetti noodles)

I made a simple Alfredo sauce, added diced ham (left-over from another meal) and tossed in left-over spaghetti noodles just before serving. Delicious.

Meal #2 Spaghetti Pie

I took some of the left-over spaghetti and mixed it with a beaten egg, some melted butter (at east 1/4 cup but could have added more) and at least 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese.

I layered this in the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 pan.

A nice layer of cottage cheese was put over the noodles, followed by a thick layer of spaghetti sauce.

Then I added browned meat – I used sausage but could have used hamburger, venison, ham, or even pepperoni. The finally layer was cheese – a nice coating of mozzarella and a generous sprinkle of Parmesan.

This could be baked right away at 350 degrees for about 35-40 minutes, or refrigerated for use within 24 hours, or frozen to be used within a week or two.

I actually froze this one and served it to more company a week later. It got rave reviews!

Meal #3 Hot Buttered Noodles and Grilled Hamburgers

I put the rest of the spaghetti in boiling water for just a few seconds to reheat it, then drained it, added melted butter, Parmesan cheese and a touch of garlic and served it as a side dish with grilled burgers and a green salad.

So with a little creative the mistake became the backbone for 3 more meals.

And nothing went ot waste -whew!