The Big Pink Pig

A cooking, baking, sewing, and creating blog about life with my little pink piggies.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Homemade Cinnamon and Sprinkled Donuts!

We got invited to brunch the other day and it was so exciting because our Saturday mornings usually consist of laying around in our pajamas, the kids running wild, and the husband and I procrastinating the day's work of laundry, yard work, and cleaning.  A fun and fancy time called for fun and fancy donuts--although these are really just fun, not too fancy.  My number 2 helped to dip and dunk the donuts while the other two got baths, so kids can help out a little with these.


Donut Pan (My mom got mine on Amazon and they are relatively cheap at places like Home Goods too.)
Mixer or beaters
Plastic bag


2 cups of flour
1 cup of milk
2 eggs
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1 Tablespoon Butter melted
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cinnamon Sugar for dipping
1 tablespoon of honey

1. Preheat oven to 400 and grease donut pans.
2.  Add all dry ingredients together in a mixer or with beaters and then slowly add eggs, milk, vanilla, and butter.
3.  Grab a cup and plastic bag.  Line the cup with the bag and fill the bag with donut batter.

4.  Cut a hole in the bottom corner of the bag to create a piping bag.  Pipe the batter into the donut pan about half way up (if you over fill it you will end up with a muffin looking creation).

5.  Bake for 10 minutes and then pop donuts out of pan.  I usually use a butter knife to ease them out.

6.  While the muffins are still hot take the amount that you would like to be cinnamon sugar flavored and toss with the mixture in a bowl.

7.  Dip the remaining muffins in honey (just the tops) and then immediately in sprinkles.


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Free Music'

In the mood for a freebie?  I always am, and one of the blogs I like to visit recently featured an $0.89 MP3 of kids Sunday School songs on Amazon.  I downloaded the collection, but it got me looking...looking for more deals...of the FREE kind.  This is what I found.

Sleep Like A Princess

Sweet lullabies for your little princess.

Veggie Tales: 5 Super Silly Songs

The girls LOVE these!  They are cute songs like, I Love My Lips and The Hairbrush Song.  Silly and short, and I don't mind listening to them since the girls giggle so much.

150 Songs Just For Kids

Songs like London Bridge is Falling Down and Baby Bumblebee...good solid basics.

Ok not free but almost....

May's Favorite Silly Songs for Kids

$1.99, cute songs like Big Rock Candy Mountain and Five Little Monkeys

Classical Music For Baby's Bedtime

$0.99 This is over an hour of classical music for baby, played on a loop so you can turn it on and not worry about it stooping periodically.

The 20 Minute Bib

The 20 minute Bib
Like my bib model?  She's a natural :)  Today we are making bibs--fast, easy, and cute!  These bibs are great to give as shower gifts or as baby's first meeting gifts (the day I bring over meals to my new mom friends :)

They can be made with scraps and fat quarters.  You can get creative and use old towels for the backing too, since terry cloth is excellent as sucking up spittage.  For the bib shown, I used a scrap from two scraps of different Riley Blake fat quarter and about a foot of minky (Minky and Chenille are traditionally used in baby clothing but they can be expensive.  Get on the Joann Fabric email list and you will get tons of 40% coupons.)  Here is the list of all materials:

about a foot of terry cloth, minky, or chenille
about a foot of one fabric (again I used scraps, so just print out the pattern and see what you have laying around first)
half a foot of a coordinating fabric
one velcro set (you can buy a pack of 4 for $1.59 at Joann)
Cardboard/Tag Board/Cardstock (Optional)

1.  Print out the pattern here.  I glued it to the back of an old cereal box for durability.  If you think you may only be using this pattern once, just go ahead and skip this step.  The cardboard is used just for durability.

2.  Use the pattern to cut out the large pieces in both your backing and main bib material.  Then "half" the bottom portion of the pattern to trace the pocket in your coordinating fabric.

3.  You should have three pieces.  Then take the pocket and make a fold of about 1/4 of an inch down.  Crease it by ironing the fold down and either zig-zag stitch or serge the fold down.  This will help to reduce fraying.

4.  Line your main bib fabric and pocket up so that the pocket is laying on top of the main bib and both "right" sides are looking at you.  Sew pocket onto main bib material.

5.  Take your backing and newly sewn bib front and place the two pieces "right" sides together.  Pin together to make sure that it stays in place.  Sew entire length of the bib STOPPING with about 2 inches left.  You will need this open in order to flip the bib inside out.

6.  Flip bib inside out and you should have what appears to be the entire bib completed.  Where you have created the opening, fold the fabric in slightly and sew the opening closed.

7.  Take your velcro set and at the top of the bib, sew fuzzy side up onto the FRONT top of the bib and the sticky side to the opposite BACK top of the bib.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Lentil-Carrot Meatball Grinders

Meatball Grinders are sooooo yummy!  These babies came about during lent.  Funny this is that I didn't make them on a Friday...hmmm...interesting Eileen.  These are a great way to sneak veggies into the kids.  Plus, when added to pasta or sandwiches like this they won't even know the difference (unless your Caroline Frances and you don't eat anything anyways, but that is a project for another day. :)

Ok here we go!

Lentil-Carrot Meatball Grinders
1/2 jar of spaghetti sauce
2 cups of cooked lentils (follow directions on bag)
1 cup of shredded carrots
2 eggs slightly beaten
2/3 cup of bread crumbs
2 garlic cloves minced
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup low fat ricotta cheese
1/4 cup fresh Parmesan
Mozzarella Cheese to sprinkle on top

(Note:  These recipe will make about 20 meatballs so depending on your family size and hunger size, you can freeze half and use them later.  These subs above were actually prepared using frozen meatballs from a previous recipe.  They freeze nicely and defrost in a pot or slow cooker, but if cooked in a slow cooker set on low for no more than 3 hours--these babies will fall apart otherwise.)

1.  Preheat oven to 350.  Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.  Add all ingredients except for spaghetti sauce together in a large bowl.  You can use a spoon, mixer, or be like me and use your hands.

2.  Form balls to be about 1 inch in diameter.  A little larger is fine, but the lentils won't support large sizes.  They will fall apart once cooked.  Also, beware--this is a sticky mixture so have your cookie sheet ready.

3.  Once your have formed your meatballs and placed them on the sheet, bake for about 18 minutes.  Once they are done, pull them out and let them rest for a couple of minutes.  When vegetarian meatballs are warm they tend to fall apart.  They need that extra 2 minutes to stand up haha.

4.  Heat up your sauce and add your meatballs.  Build your sandwich and sprinkle with mozzerella cheese and your are ready for dinner!

I love these because they are packed with vegetables!  I served mine with sweet potato fries, but steam broccoli would be good too.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

55 Minute Homemade Bread

Oh Pig, it has been too long!  As you can see in the picture above, we have added a little lady to our family! Gracie has been so much fun, and next week she will be 6 months old!  I cannot believe it really...ahh sigh..

Anyways, we have been busy!  Busy baking bread!  Today I had to swing by the store to get some last minute items for dinner that I forgot earlier this week (I wonder how long I can use baby brain as an excuse.)  I only had to get a few things, and I really shouldn't be allowed in Target unless it is absolutely essential, so I tried to get resourceful and avoid the trip all together-for the time being that is.

Last week I made lentil-carrot meatballs and a pesto dressing.  I made extra meatballs and froze them for future use.  Today was a lazy day so I decided to use up those frozen goodies.  (I will share that recipe tomorrow.)  I already did pasta once this week so I had to utilize the meatballs another way, so subs it was!

I had no sub rolls and not a lot of time.  Thank goodness for Pinterest!  I found a great quick baguette recipe and tweaked it a bit.  When it was all said and done, we had fresh bread for dinner.

55 Minute Fresh Bread (Whole Wheat)

2 1/4 tsp of Active Yeast (or 1 packet)
2 cups Very Warm Water
2 tbsp Sugar
1 tsp salt
3 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
2 1/2 Cups AP Flour

1.  Preheat oven to 425.  Whisk water, yeast, and sugar together and place on preheating oven for 10 minutes.
2.  Gradually add in flour and salt.  Use a dough hook on your mixer or a strong wooden spoon.  Mix until the dough appears elastic.
3.  Separate dough into two balls and sprinkle extra flour on top so it won't stick to the board.  Separate each ball into two more balls (four total).  
4.  Roll out small balls into long strands.  Braid the two strands together and place on parchment lined baking sheet.  Repeat with two remaining strands.  ( You will have 2 loaves.)  Let it rise on the hot oven for 30 minutes.
5.  Now that the dough has risen, take a casserole dish and fill it with ice (about 3 cups, but I just filled it so it lined the dish).
6.  Place the baking dish with the bread on the top oven rack and the dish with the ice, directly below it.  The steam will accelerate the baking process.  Set your timer for 15 minutes (may take a few extra minutes 15-18, every oven is a little different).  DO NOT OPEN THE OVEN BEFORE THE 15 MINUTES IS UP.  Nothing terrible will happen, you will just ruin the steam mojo. :)

Fresh baked bread in no time!  Plus you could add flax seed or oats, really anything you wanted.

We sliced it long ways and used it as sub rolls, but it would be great garlic bread, bread with soup, or even a hearty sandwich bread.  No artificial anything which also makes this appealing!   

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Miracle Stain Remover You Have In Your Cabinets!

 I found this cool little trick on Tip Nut.  They have some very cool little tricks and tips on there you should check it out!  Anyways, this is a miracle cleaner because it is non-toxic and you probably have it in your pantry or cabinets!

Ok so you can see the DISGUSTING stain on my carpet...not sure how it got there which is probably more scary.  Oh well it won't be there for much longer!

 All you need is an old rag, a sponge or spray bottle, 1/3 cup vinegar, 2/3 cups warm water, and an iron!

Dab/spray the area with the vinegar/water solution until damp.  Place the rag on top of the stain and set the iron to the "cotton" setting or about medium.  Hold the iron on the stain for about 10 seconds alternating spots until you have covered the entire stain.  You may need to add a little more of the solution if the stain doesn't come up immediately.  You are basically just steam cleaning your rug with a harmless cleaner.

This is the area where the stain was.  Pretty amazing for a few minutes of work, plus I didn't douse my carpet with smelly chemicals or anything like that.  I have seen alternative methods using ammonia, while it may do the trick a little quicker, I liked the idea of vinegar better.  The stain wasn't in a room that I could "tape off" from the girls and I just didn't feel like doing it at night when they were sleeping--lazy!  :)

Have fun cleaning!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Vintage Pattern for the First Day!

I had been browsing Etsy for the perfect vintage dress pattern for Laura's school dress.  I found this one from 1965.  I LOVE how innocent and sweet the dress is and besides the buttons, it was pretty easy to make.  Her favorite feature are the "treasure pockets."

 My little one LOVED her dress and frankly was a slave driver while I was sewing it.  She'd ask everyday where I was in the process and if I was going to work on it that day.  When I started the buttons, she would come and sit next to me and say, "Wow Momma, those buttons sure do take you a long time.  Do you need help?"  haha This is why I am so glad that her smile expresses how happy she was to be dressed and ready for her first day of school.
 I love this girl, she is one of my two favorite models ever--without a doubt!

12 buttons............(sigh)

 Ours isn't quite as short as the pattern called for, but I thought that it would get me a little more wear out of it.  Well, at least a few extra months maybe.....My sleeves were also a little too large and the sewing is definitely amateurish but it made me so proud when her teacher commented on her pretty dress and she beamed and said, "My mommy made it!!" :)

The fabric is Michael Miller's Children at Play in Meadow Pink.