Saturday, January 30, 2016

Garbage Disposal Tips

Yesterday an awful smell was coming from the garbage disposal.  I took out the rubber piece which, even though I clean that regularly seemed to be covered with tons of black slimy stuff.  And then I stuck my hand inside the disposal, making sure no one was around to accidentally flip the switch.
YUK!!!  It was covered with black slimy stuff.  It was disgusting.

So I got out my sponge and started cleaning away.  When I got most of it, I put some Comet in to let it sit overnight and this morning it was almost good.  The bottom was nice and silvery except for some black gunk around those little stick up things.  Then I thought -- the internet must know what to do so here I am.  Here are some suggestions I found.

And I like this one the best because in reading the comments it talks about the Insinkerator and how it is a design flaw.  I bet I have the same one that they're talking about because we never had this problem before.  Anyway, I'm going to keep an eye on it going forward.
Look how spotless it is now (except for a little stuff around those blades).

Friday, January 29, 2016

Mississippi Roast

An easy roast on GMA today.  Maybe I'll try it.

Robin Chapman's Mississippi Roast
Add This Popular Recipe to Your Menu!
From the Kitchen of Robin Chapman
Servings: Unknown
Difficulty: Easy
Cook Time: Over 120 min

Mississippi resident Robin Chapman is the unlikely star behind 
the Mississippi Roast, a slow-cooking dish with surprisingly 
simple ingredients that has become one of the most popular 
recipes on the Internet. Chapman says she shares credit for the 
recipe's fame with her friend Karen Farese, who helped launch the 
recipe to stardom by putting it in her church's cookbook. 
Chapman shared her famous recipe on "Good Morning America." Try 
it in your own kitchen!

(3-4 pound) roast, your choice of cut 

One stick butter 

1 package au jus gravy mix 

1 package Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix (dry) 

Pepperoncini peppers, number to your liking and a little juice


Sometimes we use chuck, sometimes sirloin tip, sometimes rump.

Sometimes we sear it. Sometimes we don't.

Put roast in slow cooker.
Add other ingredients.
Salt and Pepper 
if you like and cook on until tender.

Recipe courtesy Robin Chapman.

Recipe styled by Karen Pickus, chef/food stylist, "Good Morning 

Copyright © 2016 ABC News Internet Ventures

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Mint Date Range

So that I don't have to look this up again.

Found it here

  • , Sr. Community Manager

    By design, Mint does not have a way to filter the transactions by date range on the Transactions page. This page will only allow you to search by Description and Category. However, there is a workaround you can try that should get you the desired results.
    When you go to the Transaction page, the URL will be displayed as:
    If you add the following (with the date range you'd like to see) at the end of the URL above, it should pull transactions for that specific range:

    For example, you would like to see transactions from June 01, 2014 to June 30, 2014 only, then the URL should look like this:

    After that, as with any view in Transactions, you can then Export the list if you wish.
    ADDITION FOR CHROME USERS: Though not from Mint, there is a Chrome extension that will allow you to select a Transaction date range, located here:

    Wednesday, January 27, 2016

    Pretzel Crusted Chocolate Cake With Peanut Butter Frosting

    This chocolate cake was on GMA this morning and is going to be the dessert I bring to Patti's for superbowl.  Picture to come when I make it (hope I remember - to take the picture and to make it.)

    Pretzel Crusted Chocolate Cake With Peanut Butter Frosting

    Click here for link to original

    Servings: Unknown
    Difficulty: Moderate
    Cook Time: 30-60 min

    For the Pretzel Crust
    2 cups pretzels, finely crushed
    1 cup sugar
    3/4 cup butter, softened
    1/2 teaspoon salt

    For the Chocolate Cake

    2 cups flour
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    3/4 cup cocoa powder
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 3/4 cup sugar
    2 eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    1 cup milk
    1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
    1 cup hot French vanilla coffee

    For the Frosting

    8 oz cream cheese, softened
    1 cup confectioners sugar
    1 1/4 cup peanut butter
    1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup heavy cream milk as needed to thin

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with a non-stick
    In a medium bowl, mix together the pretzels, sugar, butter and
    salt. Add to the bottom of the pan, press down for even
    distribution and bake for 10 minutes.
    Remove and set aside.
    In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, salt, cocoa powder and
    baking soda together.
    In a large bowl, add the sugar, eggs, vanilla, milk and oil. Beat
    until creamy, then add the dry flour ingredients and combine,
    then slowly add in the hot coffee.
    Pour the cake mixture over the pretzel crust and bake for 30 to
    35 minutes, let cool.
    To make the frosting, add all the ingredients together and beat
    until creamy. Check for consistency, add milk to thin as needed.
    (I use Chocolate Cashew Milk for this, but use whatever milk you
    have.) Once the cake is cooled, frost it and cut into slices and
    serve. Drizzle with a chocolate sauce, if desired.

    Recipe courtesy Gina Ferwerda.

    Recipe styled by Karen Pickus, chef/food stylist, "Good Morning

    Copyright © 2016 ABC News Internet Ventures

    My Note:  After making this I calculated the WW Smart Point Values.  And after calculating I think the best idea if you are watching your weight is to just to take a lick off someone's fork.

    The totals for each section are:
    Crust:   120
    Cake:    152
    Frosting;  113
    Total:   385
    Now how many servings?  If you have a 1" x 1" piece then there are 117 servings which would put it at only 3 SPV per piece.  However realistically if you do a 2 x 2 piece you would get approximately 29 pieces which would be 13 SPV or a 1"x2" would be 6 SPV.  Probably before smart points it wouldn't be so much but there is a lot of sugar in this recipe and the points are really high for sugar.
    But it's for the Super Bowl.  I'm sure I'll never make it again.  Hope everyone likes it and I don't have to take any home.

    There is a ton of frosting and it is really soft so could be swished off, but it is good!!

    Friday, January 22, 2016

    Turkey Chili Variation

    This recipe was in the paper this morning and I might try a few of the suggestions in it, such as the soy sauce and cocoa - don't know about the beer.
    A tastier, healthier turkey chili

    The Associated Press
    Everyone has a favorite chili recipe, and this is the time of year to break out yours, invite over some friends and yell at football players on TV.
    Maybe it’s time to try a new, healthier recipe, too? Chili is classic American comfort food, so we automatically assume that it can’t be healthy. But since it is so darned tasty, it’s worth the price of admission to try. And while I’m not against the occasional indulgence, I also love a recipe that manages to be both comforting and healthy.
    Enter my game day turkey chili. Stay with me, here. This won’t be your typical turkey chili because I have a few tricks up my sleeve. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good turkey chili. But they do occupy a special place in the stratified chili eco-system. Put them in a chili competition and you will see they land well below the fatty brisket chilies that feature tiny puddles of tasty melted fat that pleasantly coat the palate.
    Turkey chili, if I’m honest, has been relegated to the “at least it’s hot” status for too long.
    Here are my tricks. First, make it a red chili. White chili, step aside for a moment. The red part comes from tomato, which is healthy, and frankly just feels like comfort food. Second, skip the salt. Instead, use soy sauce directly on the meat after cooking it. This is perhaps the greatest tip I can give you regarding ground turkey! White-ish meat in a deep red chili looks a little strange. You are reminded that you are eating The Healthy Turkey Chili.
    But deepen that meat color just a little with the soy sauce and you are back in the land of Real Meaty Chili. The soy sauce also adds tons of rich, savory meaty flavor, a big benefit for a meat that can taste a little flat.
    Final tip: Add a bit of unsweetened cocoa powder, which deepens both the color and the flavor. This is turkey chili done right! And so, 2016 is off to a good start.

    Start to finish: 45 minutes
    Servings: 8
    2 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
    1 pound lean ground turkey
    2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
    2 teaspoons smoked paprika
    1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
    1 red bell pepper, cored and finely chopped
    12-ounce light beer
    Two 15-ounce cans low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
    14-ounce can low-sodium tomato sauce
    Two 14-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
    2 tablespoons chili powder
    Dash of cayenne pepper
    1 teaspoon cocoa powder
    Hot sauce, to taste
    Plain low-fat Greek yogurt, to serve
    Chopped scallions, to serve
    Shredded cheddar or Mexican cheese, to serve
    In a Dutch oven or other large, heavy pot over medium-high, heat 1 teaspoon of the oil. Add the turkey and cook, breaking it up, until cooked through, about 7 minutes. Sprinkle the turkey with the soy sauce and smoked paprika, then mix until well-coated. Continue to cook until any moisture in the pot is gone, about 3 minutes. Spoon the meat out of the pan and set aside.
    Return the pot to the heat and add the remaining oil. Add the onion and red pepper, then cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Increase the heat to high, then add the beer to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom to loosen any stuck bits. Simmer for 2 minutes. Return the meat to the pot, along with the beans, tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, chili powder, cayenne and cocoa powder. Bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, then simmer for 30 minutes.
    Serve with hot sauce, yogurt, scallions and cheese on the side.

    Nutrition information per serving: 320 calories; 90 calories from fat (28 percent of total calories); 10 g fat (3 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 50 mg cholesterol; 660 mg sodium; 33 g carbohydrate; 11 g fiber; 10 g sugar; 24 g protein.