Happy National Chili Day!

Fast Beef Chili ~ The Peachy Pair

I don’t think they picked today as National Chili Day on accident.  What better to eat on a cold, even snowy day!

Here are a couple of chili recipes to enjoy.  Share your favorite with us!

Slow Cooker Texas Chili

This Food Network recipe is what I made for Christmas Eve dinner and it was a huge hit!

Slow Cooker Texas Chili ~ The Peachy Pair

Fast Beef Chili

Want something fast for a weeknight?  This one’s for you!

Fast Beef Chili  ~ The Peachy Pair

 

Extreme Makeover: Pantry Edition

Pantry Update Recipe - The Peachy PairOne of the big things on my honey-do list was to update/improve our pantry. When we moved into our house a little over a year ago the pantry had some Closetmaid wire shelves in it that just aren’t that great in a pantry. Not only do they not let things sit really well, they had trouble supporting the jars we use to store bulk grains and even smaller cans of food. We had maxed them out pretty quickly.

DSC_0158We did solve the problem of things tipping over with a few vinyl floor tiles that we cut to fit and put underneath everything. At least it gave things a more solid surface.

DSC_0159I decided that this was a project that I could handle pretty easily, but it did require the purchase of a few things. One a kinda major purchase, but it will provide years of extra work for me…..a table saw!

DSC_0164DSC_0167The first thing we did was remove everything from the pantry and tear out the old shelves. Well really the first thing was to measure it all and buy the wood, but again I’ll provide a full project “recipe” at the end.

The walls are hollow, not a stud to be found, so we had to repair the damage left from the previous shelving. I like the spackling that changes from purple to white when it is dry. Easy to know when you can move on to sanding.

DSC_0171After a little sanding, we used a barely dampened rag to wipe everything down. This removes the dust and will help the paint stick.

Jenny added a couple of coats a paint to the entire closet. We had some matching so this was pretty easy.

DSC_0173I used the newly acquired table saw to trim down the sides to fit on the walls. I ended up having to remove between 2 and 3 inches to make them fit above the baseboard and snug up against the ceiling.

We held them up to the walls and drilled through them to mark the wall. After pulling them back down we installed some hollow wall anchors that would be hidden behind the boards. After lifting the boards back into place, Jenny added the screws into the wall anchors securing the sides of the new shelving to the walls. We did run into a slight issue on the left side. The wall void was not so hollow…. there was a pretty good run of hard metal duct work. We were able to secure it to the drywall up top and use the anchors down low. Sometimes I wish I had x-ray vision for stuff like this.

DSC_0175We then measured the size of the shelves, we were able to get three shelves out of an 8 foot board. We cut them down, added in the shelf pins and put the shelves into place.

By adding in a couple of extra shelves, tossing in a couple of Lazy Susans, and arranging things a little better, we were able to leave the door and door rack off creating us a tad extra room.

DSC_0179DSC_0180DSC_0181The finished product!

DSC_0222DSC_0225DSC_0226Our pantry update recipe:

Things we purchased:
2 - 8' melamine boards drilled for shelf pins ($26.24 each): $52.48
3 - 8' melamine shelf boards, not drilled ($19.53 each): $58.59
3 - Packs of shelf pegs ($1.62 each): $4.86
1 - 12 pack of hollow wall anchors: $5.79
1 - 10"-40 tooth saw blade: $16.97

1 - Table saw: $129.00

Things we had on hand:
Painters tape
Paint and supplies
Spackling
Drill & drill bits
Screwdrivers
Tape measure

Total Project cost before tax: $267.69 (with saw), $138.69 (without)

Tax would be dependent on your specific area. We run 7% here, so our total project ran $286.43.

Pasta with Sausage & Ricotta

Pasta with Sausage Ricotta ~ The Peachy Pair

Can you tell that we like pasta in our house?  Well, we could pretty much eat pasta (or pizza) every night.  The latest is a simple pasta with sausage and ricotta.  I got the idea from Eating Well Magazine September/October 2014 Macaroni with Sausage & Ricotta.

This was super simple and quite tasty.  And on top of that, it’s healthy!   As written in the magazine, the 1 1/3 cup serving size is only 362 calories.  So, in my mind that means I can eat more, but I am sure to normal people, it means you have enough calories for a side salad or vegetable.  Blah. 

Pasta with Sausage & Ricotta

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 ounces mild pork sausage
  • 1 14 ounce can fired roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt
  • 13.25 ounce box whole wheat penne pasta
  • 6 tablespoons part skim ricotta cheese
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

DSC_0075

Cook pasta per package instructions.  Meanwhile, heat oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. 

DSC_0078

Add sausage, onion, and garlic, cooking for about 5 minutes. 

DSC_0080

Add the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. 

DSC_0082

Cook for about 5 minutes and then reduce heat to simmer.  When pasta is just about done, add ricotta and basil to the sauce. 

DSC_0084

Toss in the drained pasta

DSC_0085

and top with Parmesan Cheese. 

DSC_0086 DSC_0090

Pasta with Sausage & Ricotta
Serves 4
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
30 min
560 calories
76 g
37 g
18 g
23 g
6 g
247 g
515 g
6 g
0 g
11 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
247g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 560
Calories from Fat 160
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18g
28%
Saturated Fat 6g
28%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Cholesterol 37mg
12%
Sodium 515mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 76g
25%
Dietary Fiber 4g
16%
Sugars 6g
Protein 23g
Vitamin A
6%
Vitamin C
13%
Calcium
15%
Iron
14%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  2. • 1/2 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  3. • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. • 6 ounces mild pork sausage
  5. • 1 14 ounce can fired roasted diced tomatoes
  6. • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  7. • Salt
  8. • 13.25 ounce box whole wheat penne pasta
  9. • 6 tablespoons part skim ricotta cheese
  10. • 10 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
  11. • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Instructions
  1. Cook pasta per package instructions. Meanwhile, heat oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Add sausage, onion, and garlic, cooking for about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes and then reduce heat to simmer. When pasta is just about done, add ricotta and basil to the sauce. Toss in the drained pasta and top with Parmesan Cheese.
beta
calories
560
fat
18g
protein
23g
carbs
76g
more
Adapted from Eating Well September/October 2014 Macaroni with Sausage & Ricotta
The Peachy Pair http://www.thepeachypair.com/

Looking for a great lunch?

McAlisters Lunch - The Peachy Pair

Why is it that we always have one of those days where nothing seems to go right? That’s the way I feel every time it rolls around to making a lunch decision. You see, even though Jenny is a fabulous cook, I’m not really a leftovers eater. I have to make myself take a lunch and then most of the time I’ll take along a can of soup. I have a drawer full in my office.

soup

Well, I’m always looking for healthier options. I can’t just eat junk everyday for lunch (though I would love to do it!) Jenny happened across this at McAlister’s Deli the other day and I thought I would bring it to you.

They have this Awesome “Lite Choose Two” menu printed in these little books sitting in the restaurant.

inside

As it says, you have over 250 choices under 600 calories! Who doesn’t like variety and low calorie all at the same time. The range is pretty good too. They start at a low 330 for a “Savannah Chopped Salad” and “Fire Roasted Vegetable Soup” up to a still low 590 for two options….one being a “Grilled Chicken Salad” and a “Ham Melt”. That sounds like meat and cheese. I can get into that!

My point is this. You can run across the street and have a large sandwich named after some guy called Mac and consume 550 calories. Then add on the medium fries (assuming you don’t upsize it) for another 380 calories. Then a medium sweet tea for 154 calories and you are quickly at a lunch of 1084 calories……..!

If you find yourself in a lunchtime pinch and cant think of a place to go, try this out. If you do find yourself out and about, look for these little books at the places you go. Consumers are becoming more aware of calories and restaurants are beginning to offer these types of menus somewhere……just look or ask for them.

Have a great day and a sensible lunch!

Happy International Pancake Day and National Pancake Week!

Blueberry Pancakes ~ The Peachy Pair

So, I guess there are a lot of days dedicated to pancakes!  In honor of  the day, I thought I would share our posts of pancakes past.   Get it.  Like ghosts of Christmas past.  Whatever.  Eat some pancakes.

Blueberry Pancakes

Blueberry Pancakes ~ The Peachy Pair

Peanut Butter Bacon Pancakes

Peanut Butter Bacon Pancakes ~ The Peachy Pair

Chocolate Chip Bananas Pancakes

DSC_0036small