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Share a Spoon - Easy Peasy Pasta Alfredo

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Think Tank Momma


Share a Spoon

Today's theme is...


I didn't have a request today, so I actually chose the theme.  I was hoping that we would get some fun new recipes.  Pasta is one of the most versatile and universal ingredients.  Almost every culture has their own version of a noodle or some sort of pasta.

I make all sorts of pasta dishes, most of them Italian in origin.  Though we do enjoy a nice stroganoff and goulash on occasion.  I love couscous and orzo salads.  Chicken noodle soup is my husband's favorite.

Today I thought I would share an easy peasy pasta dish.

This is my Americanize version of Prociutto and Peas.

Easy "Peas"y Pasta Alfredo


1 Box Penne pasta
1 large ham steak diced
1 bag of frozen peas
2-3 Tablespoons of fresh chopped Italian Flat Leaf Parsley

Alfredo Sauce:
2 cups heavy cream
1 stick butter
2 cups grated parmesan
black pepper
1 clove garlic grated

Cut ham steak into bite size chunks.  Add a few tablespoons of olive oil to a skillet and brown the ham steak.  Remove from heat and set aside.

In a sauce pan, over medium heat, melt butter and heavy cream together.  Add the grated garlic and let simmer.  Whisk in parmesan and pepper and simmer over low heat.

Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil.  Salt the water liberally and boil pasta according to the directions.  In the colander, open the frozen peas.  When the pasta is done pour the hot water and pasta over the peas. Stir peas into the pasta.

Pour pasta and peas back into the pot the pasta was cooked in.  Add the browned ham.  Pour the alfredo sauce over and mix.  Stir in the flat leaf parsley.  Serve and Enjoy!

I made the rolls to go with this meal.  They are super easy.  Even if you don't have a stand up mixer.  You only have to knead this dough for 6 minutes or so.  It's a very soft light and fluffy dough.  I promise, these are SOOOOOO worth the effort.


1 package quick rise yeast
2 Tablespoons of sugar
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups warm milk
1/4 sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 Tablespoons salt
2 cloves grated garlic
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1/2 cup olive oil
7-7 1/2 cups of flour

In a large bowl add yeast, warm water and 2 tablespoons sugar.  Allow the yeast to bloom.  Takes a couple of minutes.  Warm the milk in the microwave while waiting for the yeast to bloom.  Crack the eggs into a bowl.  Once the yeast has bloomed add the warm milk, olive oil, eggs, sugar, garlic, oregano, salt and three cups of the flour to the bowl.  Mix together until the mixture is smooth and creamy.  Slowly work in the remaining flour one cup at a time.  Once all the flour is incorporated turn dough out onto a clean floured surface and knead the dough for 6-8 minutes.  This is a soft and a little sticky dough.

Coat the bottom and sides of a large bowl with olive oil.  Add dough to prepared bowl turning to make sure it is coated in the oil.  Cover with a clean dish towel and set aside to rise.  The dough should double in size in an hour.  Punch the dough down and turn out onto a clean floured surface.  Cut the dough into 4 equal parts.  Cut the quarters into 6 equal sized pieces.  

Cover a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Roll the dough into 24 rolls and place on the prepared cookie sheet.

Cover the rolls and let them rise until they double in size.  Takes about 45 minutes.

Melt a stick of butter.  Brush the tops of the rolls with the melted butter.  Sprinkle with a little parmesan and flat leaf parsley.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.

I promise you will LOVE LOVE LOVE these, and you will LOVE LOVE LOVE me for sharing them with you!!

O.k...I shared mine, it's your turn.  Bring on the oodles of noodles!  Link up, leave me some love, and let me know what you want to see here on Thursdays!
Amare Dalla Casa di Romano!


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

My boys walk home from the bus stop everyday.  It's several houses down from where we live.  So, Kooper calls me the moment he gets off the bus and we talk until I can physically "see" him and his brother.

Last week he called and he was in tears.  He was crying so hard I could barely understand what he was saying.  I had asked the same question I do every day, "How was your day?"

I got from the conversation that someone had been mean.  I just couldn't really make out the details through the tears.

Once he got home I got the whole story.  A kid in his class has been bullying him since school started this year.  He has been calling my son "fat", "stupid" and making fun of him so that he has quit participating in football with the other boys at recess.  He told him the only thing he(my son) could do was outweigh his(the bully) mom.

I was furious to say the least.  I felt the sting of anger hit my eyes, and I fought back the tears with everything I had while I consoled my broken hearted son.  I asked him several questions about the other child, and fought the urge to make disparaging comments about the bully.  We discussed the situation.  I told Kooper that the bully was just jealous.

Kooper retorted "He's not jealous of me mom, I don't have anything he wants, why would he be jealous?" 

I said, "You do too son.  You have friends, and family who love you.  Do you know why people say hurtful things like that?"

"Yes Mom, I know that he does it to make himself feel better.  It still doesn't make it any easier to take." he replied.

My heart skipped a beat.  For a split second I was elated that the things I try to impart in my children are actually sinking in.  Then the reality of his words hit my heart and the stinging in my eyes took over.  I hugged my baby tightly and told him that I loved him.  Told him he was perfect and that no one could take away his dignity unless he gave it to them.  I wiped my tears before he could see them.

I told him that obviously this little boy was lacking something at home.  Kooper argued that this boy claims how perfect his life is all the time.  Boasts about it even.  He has everything.  He has perfect this, and perfect that.  I asked Kooper if he really believed that.  He sat and thought for a moment.  "I guess not.  He wouldn't have to tell everyone if that was true would he Mom?"

"No Koop, he wouldn't."

"He's kinda sad and pathetic huh?"

"Son, obviously he has some issues that we don't know about.  Just remember that and try not to let the things he says get to you."

With that Kooper got up and went to play in his room.

I quickly made a break for my room where I no longer fought the anger or hurt and I let the tears fall from my face.  How dare that child hurt my sweet tender hearted baby!  After I let it out, I washed my face and composed myself.

I spoke to Kooper later and he asked me not to address the situation at school.  He said his teacher had seen him crying after recess and that she assured him that she would correct the problem.  I agreed that this time I would let it go as long as it was addressed by his teacher.

The next time?  Momma Bear is going down to take care of it!

What would you do Smackers?  Have any of you had similar issues with school bullies?

PINT - Notes to Self

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Only Parent Chronicles

It's STICKY Love Day!

Make some Post-it Notes and Stick 'Em Up!

Then run over are link up with That One Mom.

Friends You Love Blog Hop - There are Toys in my Tank!

Monday, September 27, 2010



Today is the final installment of Friends You Love's Monday Blog Hop.  I hope that everyone has found some new friends to follow and get to know.

We have had the opportunity to meet some amazing women this way, and also highlight some amazing women as well.

Last week, my good friend Holly from 504 Main graciously agreed to guest post on the FYL blog.  She offered me two posts to choose from.

I thought they were both amazing so this week I am posting the other post here.

I absolutely love Holly and I think you all will too.

I am just a little bit obsessed over old toys. There is a sweetness about them. A mystery too. When I go to the flea market and see a worn doll I always wonder who, what where did that doll come from? Same thing goes for the bucket of hot wheels cars or the toy train or the rocking horse or the Little People Farmhouse. Yes, in spite of my house being filled with toys, and the fact that I {and sometimes the kids} are continually picking them up....I do have a fondness for those well-loved toys.

I am always preaching to my kids to take care of their toys...because when I was a child, I of course, took the utmost care of mine. In fact they are in pristine condition {or so I thought}. I, of course, ultimately hope this is teaching them something about responsibility and respect.

I have been very anxious to share my childhood toys with my children. Every time my Mom says "Dad is going into the top of the garage (or the attic)," I ask if he could look for one of my treasures. Well, my parents are all for this - they are cleaning house - time for my brother and I to store our own stuff. So, now, every time they come to visit I can expect at least one new find to come with them. And I am so excited about it! Just giddy, in fact!

 I so wanted my own purple corvette and Ken!

My son looks at me like I am crazy {maybe he knows something the rest of the world can only assume?...hmmm...} when I tell him that I used to "use my imagination" when we played with Legos. When I suggest he can mix pieces from different boxes, he just about passes out {he likes order} - he cannot even fathom it  "But Mom they come in sets. You cannot mix up the pieces!" Of course, we had sets with were houses, police stations, fire stations, etc., but nothing like the $150 sets they sell now {seriously, I am so tired of paying $5 in shipping for a teeny-tiny 45 cent piece, which is necessary to finish building the battleship}.

Over the last couple of years, Puzzle Town, Legos, Barbies, Nerf Ping Pong, and an my Cabbage Patch Dolls have found a new home at my "big-girl" house. Most of them have remained boxed in a closet or garage, but recently we have started pulling them out to play with. Boy was I in for a shocker! These toys that I thought I had left in perfect condition look a little tattered and bruised...all because they were loved of course!

We have unearthed my Barbies - most of who have had a haircut and some even without heads, a purple Barbie Corvette, a Mrs. Beasley with "false" eyelashes - most likely drawn on with a marker, a stained but oh-so lovable Raggedy Ann, a beat-up musical bunny, two Cabbage Patch dolls - one of which is a boy named Carol Lennie that at the time, I insisted could be just be a tomboy...he/she was part of the first run of Cabbage Patch dolls and my mom {try as she might} could not get a girl doll. I now can see he was clearly a boy.

I love these toys and love watching my kids play with them. I am wondering what toy brings back wonderful memories for you? Or what toy have you passed on to your children?


Sunday, September 26, 2010


The winner of my Mabel's Label Mama Cards™ Giveaway is....


(Please email me)


A big round of applause and THANK YOU to our sponsor.

In other FYL news....

As September comes to a close, we want to thank everyone who made the Friends You Love event such a success.  What a better way to say "Thank you!" than by throwing a party?!?!

Please join us
Thursday, September 30
from 8:00 - 9:30 p.m. CST
for the
Friends You Love Twitter Gala
sponsored by

To participate follow
as well as special guest

On the day of the party, we will provide you with a custom tweet grid to follow along!

RSVP in advance and be entered into a random drawing!

Share a Spoon Theme - PASTA

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Think Tank Momma

Happy Saturday Smackers!

It's THEME Time.

This week's theme is brought to you by yours truly.

You all have been slacking on asking for themes. *ahem*  Please leave what you want to see in the comments, or shoot me an email!


Notice the theme is pasta, not Italian.  You can find pasta in almost every single culture.  The possibilities with pasta are endless.

Think about it, all the dishes you can think of with some sort of pasta or noodles.  Everything from couscous, to noodles, to spaghetti, ravioli, orzo, macaroni, etc....

Stroganoff, kugel, Yakisoba, lasagna, Goulash, endless possibilities.

You can find noodles or pasta in salads, soups, sweet dishes, savory dishes. 

 Fried, baked, boiled, stuffed, whatever your preparation.

I want to know, what do you use pasta for!?!

See you Thursday for all your favorite pasta dishes.

Share a Spoon - Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Think Tank Momma

Happy Thursday!

It's that day when we Share our favorite recipes!

Share a Spoon - CHICKEN

This week's theme is CHICKEN and brought to you by the fabulous Juney from 3! a Charm.  

I was thrilled when Juney asked for chicken, because honestly, I could eat chicken every. single. day.  Now, Juney and I disagree on which part of the chicken is the best.  Juney likes the dark meat.  She's the equivalent of a legs man.  I like the breast.  I'm basically the boob guy!

I thought this week I would share my boys favorite chicken dish.  They are excited beyond belief when they hear the menu for the evening includes Chicken and Rice.  All of them love it and always ask for seconds.

I have been battling sinus headaches this week and haven't made this to take pictures (BOO!) but the directions are simple and this is seriously fool proof!

So, my Granny made chicken and rice and chicken and dumplings and chicken and noodles when I was growing up a lot.  She would make all three and usually several vegetables to go along side it.  Oh, and homemade biscuits to boot.  Yeah, um....that's not me.  It took her all day.  She boiled whole chickens, you know most of the day.  She cut them up herself.  She was a machine in the kitchen.

I am way too lazy for all that, and I have found shortcuts to get that amazing flavor from my childhood, in a FRACTION of the time.

On to the recipe....

Chicken and Rice

Provided by Google Images.  


3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 boxes chicken stock
2 cups long grain white rice (do not substitute quick rice)
2 heaping Tablespoons of sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
3-4 Tablespoons olive oil


Cut your raw chicken breasts into 1/2 inch cubes.  Salt and pepper the cubes.

Heat a heavy bottom pot on high heat.  Add the olive oil.  When the pot is screaming hot add the chicken.

Brown the chicken until it is cooked completely through.  Takes roughly 5-7 minutes.

Add the boxes of chicken stock.  Scrap up all the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Reduce the heat to medium and let the chicken boil for 10-15 minutes.

Add the sour cream to the pot and stir it in.

Add 2 cups of uncooked rice and stir.  Bring to a boil.  

Cover and reduce the heat to simmer.  Let the rice cook for 20 minutes.

Remove the lid and stir well.  There will be some juice left in the pot.  Not to worry.  Let the chicken and rice sit for 5-10 minutes and it will be perfect.

I serve this with frozen baby sweet peas, always.  In a sauce pan I add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 medium shallots diced finely.  Add a little salt to help the shallots along.  Once the shallots are transparent, add a bag of frozen baby sweet peas.  Stir the peas coating them with the olive oil and shallots.  Cook over medium heat until the peas are just warmed through.  

Well, that's it Smackers.  This recipe really is so easy.  Browning the chicken, adding the chicken stock and sour cream, gives this that all day cooked flavor and it doesn't disappoint!

I hope you enjoy as much as my boys!

Now, link up and share your favorite chicken dishes!

Oh...and GO ENTER my giveaway.  I have two entries?  Really?  Please!  ENTER!  Your chances of winning are um...HIGH to say the least!


The Need for Speed Driving Course

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I've written before about my propensity to feel the need for speed.  I drive fast.  I get behind the wheel and my foot hits the pedal and it's a match made in heaven.  The moment my foot hits that pedal it's like an instant connection.  The pedal knows me and I know it.  We jive.  If you add to that connection a's even better.

Just because I like to drive fast doesn't mean I drive unsafely though.  I am always very aware of everything going on around me.  If you are going to speed that's kind of important.  In my younger years I worked just to pay off the state. Which is to say that I was always the recipient of tickets.  

Tickets for speeding = points on license.  

In order to continue my need for speed I took a defensive driving course.  

Taking driving course = No points assessed to driver's license

The defensive driving course really was a huge benefit.  Much to my surprise, I enjoyed the 4 hours of my life that I could never get back.  I learned to be aware of others around me at. all. times.  I have successfully avoided a gazillion accidents because of idiot drivers thanks to that defensive driving course.

Anyspeeddemon, one morning a few years ago on my way to work, I stopped to drop off my electric bill.  It took BDC like FOREVER to start paying our bills online.  Don't's a whole other post.  So I dropped off the payment which seriously cramped my morning time table, and was sitting at the light waiting to get back into traffic.  

Being aware of those around me I noticed the guy who pulled up behind me.  He was in a black Ford Explorer.  I noticed him staring.  Craning his neck even. I thought "Damn dude!  Take a picture already."  Then I saw him shift in his seat.  I wanted the light to change already, but the light we were sitting at is notoriously slow.  So then I see the guy open his door.  My heart raced as he started walking.  What the hell?  Who does that?  

Oh shit!  He has something in his hand.  He stopped.  It's an umbrella in his hand.  He then starts toward his windshield wipers with the umbrella.  Then I see what he was looking at.  It wasn't me he was staring at, making mean faces at.  It wasn't me he was after.  IT. WAS. A. SNAKE!

He flicked the snake off his truck.  He then proceeded to do the freaking most hilarious DOODY JIG DANCE I have ever witnessed and jumped back in his truck.  The light changed and as we pulled into traffic he saw me laughing and gave me the faintest of smiles.

I thought about this when I was attacked by the little green tree frog earlier this week.  I opened my front door to take my Chihuahua out and the frog fell on my head.  It felt heavy for a little frog when it hit my hair.  When I swiped the side of my head quickly, it fell to the floor.  It was wet and slimy and I did one of those full body shivers and squealed before I saw it hit the floor.  I was mid-doody jig dance when I realized it was just a tree frog and I was being ridiculous.

Lucky for me, nobody witnessed my dance.  The poor guy in the Ford Explorer had to go through the whole day knowing that I laughed about his public dancing of the creepy crawlies!

PINT - Simple Math

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

That One Mom

It's Sticky Love Day with That One Mom!

Enter here for your chance to win!  Do it!

See you Smackers THURSDAY for Chicken Recipes!
Tell your friends!  Everyone loves chicken.

Happy Tuesday!

There's a DUCK in my Tank!

Monday, September 20, 2010


So, we all know my proclivity to um....bend the rules.  I have an antipathy or aversion when it comes to rules.  You know, of ANY KIND.  I don't really know why....just a rebel at heart.  Perhaps sheer stubbornness???

Suffice it to say, child psychology typically works on me.  Tell me you don't want me to do something you really do, and I am all over it.  Don't get me wrong, you have to be believable.  Patronizing this gal is, well let's just say it isn't received well, and leave it at that shall we?

So...since we know I break bend blow them all to hell side step the rules, I have asked my BFF to guest post today.  Yeah, yeah....sue me.  *rolls eyes and sticks the hand up*

To me this month is about celebrating FRIENDSHIP.  So once again, I am sharing my friends with all of you!

I present THE GREAT DUCKALICIOUS, so dubbed by ME!

take it away my fine feathered friend....

As we walk our path of life,
We meet people everyday.
Most are simply met by chance.
But, some are sent our way.
These become special friends
Whose bond we can't explain;
The ones who understand us
And share our joy and pain.
Their love contains no boundaries.
So, even we are apart.
Their presence enhances us
With a warmth felt in the heart.
This love becomes a passageway,
And so, these friends, God sends our way,
Remain forever near.


And of course real friends offer to send cement and personally help outfit anyone in your life that might be needing some new shoes. Adrienzgirl has been a most phenomenal addition to my life. One of those connections that never in a million years could I ever have foreseen the intricate nature of, the importance or depth of her impact. She is an amazing life force full of love, compassion, empathy, laughter and sarcasm and has continued to be so through not only the death of my sister but in all of the waves at the pond as of late. Having the mobile connection through the Crackberry allows me to take her everywhere I need her and her humor to be. Which yes, includes the shitter. Many a convos takes place in the bathroom. Girl, you have NO IDEA how many bathroom stalls I've hidden out in just to be able to sit and chat with you!!

So thank YOU Momma B for asking me to Quack a bit over here in the Tank. Gives me an opp to share just how awesome you are!!! Not that your Smackers don't already know that. *big hugs* Thank you for being the awesomeness that is you and I am honored to be a part of the Friends You Love celebration this month! Your friendship is most assuredly worth celebrating! Now....go fix me a martini woman! Shaken not stirred...

As you can see, The Duck and I have weathered some storms, we have shared many tears (both painful and joyful).  So next time you are in the shitter and wondering who is beside you typing furiously or Quacking to someone else, you can bet it's either me or The Duck!

Happy Monday Smackers!  Leave us some love and then go make some friends!

If for some reason you don't follow Ducky, get over to The Pond and check that shiz out!  She's wicked funny!