Crock Pot Sketti

Let’s see, I’ve tried desserts, soups, have made applesauce and apple butter in the crock pot now…but I had no idea it was possible to make spaghetti in the crock pot. That was news to me and boy was it easy!! I had no idea going into this if the noodles would actually cook properly or if it would be some pipe dream. Let’s face it, sometimes when see something on Pinterest you wonder if it could actually be real or a hoax. I’ve tried a couple of other recipes shared through Pinterest and they’ve actually worked, however, others I’ve never shared the results because it was downright embarrassing just how bad they turned out. With that said, I’ve made this recipe twice now and it gets better every time! Plus I love that it doesn’t heat up the kitchen during the summer…who WOULDN’T love that?!Β Don’t be overwhelmed by the list of ingredients, so long as you have everything prepped ahead of time, this recipe is going to be a breeze to put it in the crock pot πŸ™‚

 

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Crock Pot Sketti

2 pounds ground beef, cooked and drained

1 tsp sweet summer savory (optional)

1 onion, chopped and cooked

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 to 3–16 oz jars of favorite spaghetti sauce

8 oz brick cream cheese, cubed

1 cup parmesan cheese

1–14.5 oz can chicken broth

1 pound dry spaghetti noodles

1 cup heavy cream (optional)

 

In a large pot brown ground beef with onions. Drain if needed and season with sweet summer savory(or basil and oregano).

In a 7 quart crock pot, pour in one jar of spaghetti sauce. Break spaghetti noodles in half and lay on top of the sauce. Add the can of chicken broth, add meat mixture topped with minced garlic. Add another jar of sauce. Place cubed cream cheese on sauce, sprinkle on parmesan cheese. Finally add more sauce over the cheese, just enough to cover and cook on low for 4 hours.Β  An hour before serving give the pot a stir with tongs, breaking up any clumped noodles. At this point you can add heavy cream or more spaghetti sauce if it’s too thick. Let finish cooking for that final hour covered. Serve with garlic bread and salad!

 

This was amazing, plenty of leftovers for another meal, I love making this and freezing the leftovers. Which heat back up beautifully!

I do however, feel the need to quickly explain what sweet summer savory is exactly. It’s a delicate herb that somewhat reminds me of thyme, flavor wise. It’s different from the winter savory which I understand is more bitter, so when looking online on where to buy summer savory be sure you are indeed purchasing the summer and not the winter. I especially love adding the summer savory to Italian dishes, it adds a delightful layer of flavor that truly compliments the basil and oregano flavors in spaghetti sauces.Β  You can definitely add it to marinades, soups, pork loins, and chicken.

The cream adds a richness to the dish but it helps to tame the intense sauce flavor(depending on the sauce you use). Instead of cream you can add milk, just cut it back to 1/2 cup, you definitely don’t want to turn the dish into a spaghetti soup πŸ™‚

 

Hope you enjoy!!

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Cobb Salad

Hey y’all, goodness I’m so glad another week of school is done. Two weeks done and so far so good πŸ™‚ I finally sat down today with the camera and uploaded a bunch of pictures and have since been trying to remember what everything was. Lol that’s never good, but I think I have things pretty much figured out *golf clap*. G-Man is even siked about me having my own youtube channel, yes I’ve yet to get that up but have no fear it is still on the list of things to do! He knows of a good app that I can use on my iPad to make the videos with, something he once used for his stop motion Lego videos. Will see how that works out πŸ˜‰ In the mean time, hopefully you all will try out this salad recipe I have for you and let me know what you think. It’s a fairly basic cobb salad but you can dress it up however you like!

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Cobb Salad

1 bag romaine salad mix

1 large tomato, chopped

2 avocados

6 sweet peppers, deseeded and thinly sliced

12 eggs for egg salad

12 Tyson grilled chicken strips, chopped

favorite salad dressing(optional)

*Please note this will easily serve 4 people, you can certainly cut this in half or make it a single serving*

On a large platter arrange romaine salad mix. Add chopped tomatoes, chopped grilled chicken, chopped avocados. Set aside. In a medium bowl chop hard boiled eggs and add mayo, relish, and a squirt of brown spicy mustard. Salt and pepper to taste if you like. Add a few scoops next to the chopped avocados and finish off the salad with slices of sweet peppers. Garnish with your favorite dressing or oil.

The Tyson grilled chicken strips come frozen, I just let them thaw in a ziploc bag, season them up with a six pepper blend seasoning that we get from Sam’s Club and heat them up in a saute pan with a little peanut oil. Simple. Chop them up and they’re ready to go. I know that a typical cobb salad had slices of egg rather than an egg salad, but it worked out since my Mom loves egg salad and that became her dinner that it just made sense to add it to our salads that night! It was a yummy change!

You can add croutons if you like, black Kalamata olives, or other little veggies of your choice. For me, a cobb salad can be anything you want it to be and you can add anything that you want or leave off the things you don’t like. Just have fun while you cook!

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Happy Eating!!

~5 Faves Friday~

Afternoon y’all, just taking some time to share this week’s favorite things. You know, you all are welcome to Tweet/Email/Comment below your favorite things to me. Would love to know what you find funny, inspiring, sweet, or even gross but informative! What your favorite recipes that you’ve tried recently? So be sure to tag me to your Tweets(@nghtowlkitchen) if you share something there…I’d love to share on here your faves and tag you back!

This week has been a bit of dulls–ville around here. I did try out a couple of recipes, but starting next week we’re going to be getting back into our school year. Really be keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. He’s going into the 5th grade, it’s blowing my mind! We tend to start out great in the beginning but but after Christmas it’s difficult to find that groove again. Need to find a way to bounce back a bit easier after the new year. Might look into some holiday curriculum to help keep his mind sharp during his Christmas vacation. I know, I know, by that time we seriously need a break but after three weeks of nothing it can be hard to get back into our studies. Plus we typically take a hard hit with getting sick(without fail) every year. January is our worst month…is there any way we could possibly declare that month as our time off? Well, in any case we’ve got to spend this weekend getting the room ready for the new year, thankfully all our curriculum is in, just need to straighten things up in there and make it all purty!

My first favorite thing was shared with me just yesterday, it’s very special to me because it’s a quote from a dear friend that another dear friend added on top of her own photography…I love having such creative and brilliant friends! I would love to see it go viral so feel free to share it on all form of social media πŸ™‚

1) KS Quote

 

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I love this, it couldn’t be more true! Thank you so much you two, love you ladies!

 

2) If Animals Were Fat

Lol, I loved the cheetah yawning and falling out of the tree!

 

3) First Eye Phone

Showed this to my son, it’s amazing how far we have advanced πŸ˜‰

 

4) Frozen Hot Chocolate

Who says you can’t have hot chocolate in the summer?! I can’t wait to try this once we get a new blender!! We sure have been missing our smoothies so far this summer. This will be the first one we make when we get one πŸ™‚ Click the above picture to get the recipe.

 

5) 50 States in Legos: What Would Your State Look Like?

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The above picture is a depiction of my state, Alabama. Not sure about the alien but the rest of it is pretty darn cute! Click the picture to see what your State would look like.

 

Have a blessed weekend!

Tex-Mex Tater Tot Casserole

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Tex-Mex Tater Tot Casserole

Tex–Mex Tater Tot Casserole

2 lbs ground beef, cooked

1 onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 package taco seasoning

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 can black beans

1 can Rotel

1/2–1 cup salsa verde

1 can corn, drained

16 oz bag frozen tater tots

2 cups shredded cheese of your choice (Mexican blend is great)

Chopped black olives to garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 9×13 pan with cooking spray.

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In a large pot (dutch oven preferred) brown ground beef with onion and minced garlic. Drain fat if desired. Add taco seasoning, salt and pepper, black beans, Rotel, salsa verde, and corn. Let simmer to allow flavors to blend.

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Pour tater tots into greased pan into a mostly single layer. Season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper if desired. Pour meat mixture over the tots, top with cheese and bake covered in foil for 40 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake for another 15 minutes. Let stand for a few minutes before serving with sour cream and tortilla chips and topped with chopped black olives(if desired).

Take care, this casserole will weigh a ton as you pull it out of the oven! I sat it on the stove top with a resounding “thud”. But it is a delicious casserole, quick to put together and clean up was easy! Just threw the baking pan away and had a single cook pot to clean. Leftovers went into the freezer, heating up is a cinch. Just place a portioned amount into the microwave safe bowl, cover with a paper towel and cook on high for 2 minutes. Stir in any leftover frosty bits, reheat again if you want it piping hot and enjoy! You could definitely serve this with a side salad, Spanish rice and would be a hit at your next social/get together! Hope you all enjoy!!!

Happy Eating

~Breakfast for a Crowd~

Good morning everyone!! I’ve had the pleasure last night and early this morning in making some goodies for my Dad to take to work today πŸ™‚ I love making things for him to share with everyone, it’s fun, relaxing and it’s therapy that I can afford lol! Any time I can get in the kitchen to whisk something up and try something new is always enjoyable for me…just wish I had a kitchen fairy to clean up afterwards hehe!

So last night I made a family favorite(honey bun cake), and I really need to thank The Country Cook for sharing the recipe in the first place. Honestly, it is the easiest cake you’ll ever make and is perfect for any breakfast, brunch or dessert! Your family is going to love it, friends are going to request it, and be sure to have the recipe on hand to share. It is a keeper!

 

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Honey Bun Cake via the Night Owl Kitchen

 

I did cut the cake into 15 pieces, you can certain cut them smaller or larger depending on how you want to serve it. I wanted to give the option to cut a few pieces in half in case someone didn’t want to take a full piece. Be sure to head on over to The Country Cook‘s site to snag the recipe! You can click the above picture to visit her site or click HERE.

Not everyone is a fan of breakfast casseroles, frittatas, or quiches. Especially guys, and the guys I know cringe when you use the word quiche. So when Dad sent me the link to the Huevos Rancheros Casserole I was shocked! I did tweak the recipe just a tad to make it more “manly” and less chickie. I added chopped fried bacon and some onion powder, seriously you can’t have a mexican style casserole without an onion flavor. It’s just criminal! Instead of bacon you can add crumbled sausage, chopped ham or turkey. πŸ˜‰

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Huevos Rancheros Casserole via the Night Owl Kitchen

As with any breakfast casserole recipe I like to spray and flour the pan, helps to remove each serving just a smidgen easier. The Better Homes & Garden recipe wasn’t too specific about what “potato nuggets” were, so we just went with tater tots. They’re a bit more substantial than hash browns and actually worked perfectly! You can certainly use the little cubed version that comes with or without the onion and green bell pepper bits. Just make sure they are mostly thawed before you use them for the best results. I would probably go a step further and cook those up in a skillet to get them somewhat browned before baking in the casserole. That would help them to hold up better and not become a mushy mess.Β 

You can certainly spice this up, add some chopped jalapenos, red crushed pepper flakes, or diced Tabasco peppers. To serve this, add a dollop of sour cream, your favorite salsa and fresh cilantro. The picture truly does not do it justice and I wish you all could scratch n sniff the screen. I was tempted to take a scoop for myself, but I didn’t πŸ˜› You can click the above picture to view the recipe or click HERE.

What’s your favorite breakfast recipe to serve to a crowd?

Feedback Needed…

Hey y’all, lately I’ve been tossing around the idea about having a youtube channel. I’m wanting to branch out, reach more of you amazing people and what better way to do that than to youtube myself πŸ™‚ Now, I’m not gonna go crazy and vlog every day, I really won’t have the time for that but what I would like to do is once a week post a video answering YOUR questions and sharing other tidbits along the way.

IF this is something you would like to see me do please LIKE this post, COMMENT below with a yea or nay, leave your thoughts on the NOK Facebook Page, or respond on Twitter letting me know what you think! I’d really like to start reaching out to everyone, perhaps there’s a recipe on here that I didn’t explain very well and you’d like more info about, or a craft you’d like for me to show you….the possibilities are endless πŸ˜€

Looking forward to hearing from yous guys!!

 

BTW, Happy July 1st!!!

and

Happy Canada Day!!!