‘Celebrate with 8’ the First Day of Summer: Lake Love Edition

Happy First Day of Summer! Time to sit back
and ‘Celebrate with 8’ the Lake Life Edition.
Show your love of the lake with Michigan Made products.

'Celebrate with 8' for First Day of Summer | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Celebrate with 8’ is a weekly feature at Bottom Left of the Mitten – learn more here.

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Welcome visitors to the lake with this Michigan Anchor Sign from Featherandbirch.  Handcrafted right in Pure Michigan.

Michigan Anchor Great Lakes Cottage Cabin Home Wood Decor Sign Art Cutout from Featherandbirch
This Michigan charm necklace from KreationsByKoskela is the perfect gift.  Customize with different metals and local jade or jasper.  Add a little heart to the place that your giftee loves in Michigan for no additional charge.

Michigan jewelry, Lake Superior necklace from KreationsByKoskela
Michigan is known for their craft beer so why be left at the lake without a bottle opener?  The Drink Beer from Here in a Michigan beer bottle opener from briejadesigns has you all set!  Comes with a cap tray too, genius.

Beer bottle opener from briejadesigns
While technically the artist is from Pennsylvania I still included it because of how awesome this Michigan Illustration from helloniccoco is.  I’m ordering it soon for my Michigan inspired mudroom.

Michigan Illustrated from helloniccoco
These Michigan Beach Stone Stud Earrings from JujusNature are made from the prettiest stones Lake Michigan has to offer.  Hand picked and hand crafted each pair is as unique as the wearer.  Be one of a kind!

Michigan Beach Stone Stud Earrings from JujusNature
This Longitude Latitude Driftwood Sign from DestinationTree is a completely personalized.  Hand engraved with the GPS coordinates of your choosing makes the perfect centerpiece for your Lake Life home.

Longitude Latitude Driftwood Sign from DestinationTree
Do you or someone you know love to ‘hop’ to different breweries?  Enjoy some craft beer at home while watching the sunset in this Michigan Hop Pint Glass from BreweryFerment.  Ah…soak it in.

Michigan Hop Logo Pint Glass from BreweryFerment
The easy going warm days of the Lake Life don’t last forever.  Not to say that Winter isn’t another specialty of the Great Lakes.  The Always Fresh Sometimes Frozen Sign from TheBlueSpruceDecorCo. reminds you there is yet another season to look forward to.

Always Fresh Sometimes Frozen, Rustic Sign from TheBlueSpruceDecorCo

Grab some sunscreen. Get some sand beneath your feet.  Celebrate.

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Seedling - Design your own toy

 

'Celebrate with 8' for First Day of Summer | Bottom Left of the Mitten #michigan #summer #lakelife

Out of a Can Chili #SundaySupper

Happy Father’s Day! When I asked my husband what he would like me to make him he said I like nachos, maybe something on the smoker or chili.  No matter what time of year chili is always a hit at our house so chili won out, even on Father’s Day.  My Out of a Can Chili is so easy if you couldn’t already tell that the name gives it all away.

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten

I have tried dozens of chili recipes over the years.  Even one with pumpkin that did not go over well at all with my 10 year old.  Some were great but my boys love this original recipe that I’ve made forever.  Like my My Dad’s Chicken and Rice recipe this one I learned from a parent, my mom.

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten

The base of my chili always stayed the same and has been forever.  It’s the recipe my mom showed me and I haven’t veered from it.  One can chili with beans, one can chili without beans and finally one can of chili beans.

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten

For the rest of the chili I have perfected it over the years and added one can tomato soup, one can diced tomatoes and one can drained northern beans.  Do you see now why this is called ‘Out of a Can Chili’?  Start by cooking the hamburger and onion.  Cook in a large pot on medium/high heat for around 5 minutes.  Drain if you use the higher fat beef.  I like to use 80/20 or even ground turkey.  Return the meat to the same pot.  No need to dirty another one!

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Add all the cans to the pot.  Make sure to drain and wash the northern beans then add those.  Put a lid on it and let simmer for 10 minutes.  Serve with sharp cheddar cheese and crackers.  And here you are…..

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

As always thank you to our Sunday Supper host! Check out these other recipes the Father in your life will be sure to love.

Sunday Supper Father’s Day Menu Ideas

Sides Dad Will Love

Mains for the Main Man

Dad’s Favorite Desserts

The Best Recipes You Need Now for Father’s Day by Sunday Supper Movement

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

 

Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten #chili #fathersday #quickrecipe
Print Recipe
Out of a Can Chili
Less than 15 minutes will have your family enjoying this hearty chili. Top off with cheese and crackers for the perfect comfort food any time of year.
Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chili
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chili
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Out of a Can Chili | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Start by cooking the hamburger and onion. Cook in a large pot on medium/high heat for around 5 minutes. Drain if you use the higher fat beef.
  2. One can chili with beans, one can chili without beans and finally one can of chili beans. Add one can tomato soup, then one can water (using tomato soup can), one can diced tomatoes and one can drained northern beans.
  3. Return the meat to the same pot.
  4. Put a lid on it and let simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with sharp cheddar cheese and crackers. Enjoy!
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Smoked Sausage Sandwich

This week officially marked two months in our new home!  So we are celebrating this Mitten Movie Night feeling like we are finally settled in.  I made one of my favorite categories of food: the ‘sandwich‘.  Topped with saucy goodness and peppers this Smoked Sausage Sandwich is a well deserved reward for a job well done.

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Tonight we are drinking 400 Divine Rabbits from a local favorite Greenbush Brewing Co.  A great stop if you hit the beach or the casino in New Buffalo.  Then finishing up Orange Is The New Black.  I have spent many nights since last Friday binge watching it. What shows are your favorites?  I will need a new one once this is over.

I would love to take the opportunity to give a little shout out of people that helped us along the way.  Since my blog is called ‘Bottom Left of the Mitten’ I thought it was a good platform to showcase who made buying a home in this area such a treat.

Realtor:  ‘Power of 2’ Team from Cressy & Everett in Dowagiac.  We actually looked at homes a few years ago and she walked us through any and every one we wanted to look at.  We just didn’t find ‘the one’ at the time.  Called her up when we found this house to show it to us.  Three weeks and one day later not only did we have this house but we also sold ours and 4 acres of land.

Inspector:  Gary from Lake Michigan Inspections. I cannot recommend this gentleman and his father enough.  They walked us through everything, I mean everything, for our new house.  Living in town we were new to sewer and well. Same for a gas fireplace and even fixed a cap on the wood burning fireplace.

New Air Conditioner: Rohdy’s—Awesome job!  Right before our recent heatwave they worked us in for a quote and then installed the unit.  Thanks to them we have stayed comfortable and cool.

Thank you again to everyone! Now on to the food.

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Chop up the peppers, onions and mince the garlic.  To a bowl add the balsamic vinegar, sugar and olive oil then mix to combine.  Sautee over medium/high heat for 7-10 minutes. I love when the peppers are ‘burnt’ a little so I go a little closer to the 10 minute mark.

 

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Our new appliances were purchased in the recent store closing for HH Gregg.  This Frigidaire stove has a center griddle that I’ve been using non-stop.  No worries if you don’t have a griddle you can use a regular frying pan.  Butter buns and place them split side down.  Cut the sausage in 4 parts then split down the middle placing that split side down as well.  Heat the sausage through for around 3 minutes.  Flip both the bun and the sausage then cook around 3 minutes again.

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Heating up the spaghetti sauce and assembling the sandwich is all that’s left to do.  I heated it up in the microwave for 1 minute.  Place bun on plate, add split smoked sausage, layer on the veggies then top with sauce.  And here you are…..

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten #smokedsausage #sandwichrecipe #foodandbeerpairing
Print Recipe
Smoked Sausage Sandwich
Smoky sausage makes a great base for crisp peppers bathed in sweet balsamic. Finish off with a thick layer of spaghetti sauce. Perfecto!
Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sandwich
Servings
sandwiches
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sandwich
Servings
sandwiches
Ingredients
Smoked Sausage Sandwich | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Chop up the peppers, onions and mince the garlic.
  2. To a bowl add the balsamic vinegar, sugar and olive oil then mix to combine.
  3. Sautee over medium/high heat for 7-10 minutes.
  4. Butter buns and place them split side down on a heated griddle or frying pan.
  5. Cut the sausage in 4 parts then split down the middle placing that split side down as well.
  6. Heat the sausage through for around 3 minutes. Flip both the bun and the sausage then cook around 3 minutes again.
  7. Heat up spaghetti sauce in a microwave for 1 minute.
  8. Place bun on plate, add split smoked sausage, layer on the veggies then top with sauce. Enjoy!
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Cheesy Cauliflower #SundaySupper

Looking for a simple side dish that your kids will love?  Have a picky eater that thinks veggies are evil?  Try my Cheesy Cauliflower that is a proven winner with my kids and I’m sure yours will love this side dish too.

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten

My two boys couldn’t be more different nutrition wise.  If you set a bowl of fruit and a cookie in from of my 10 year old he would always choose the fruit.  He likes to generally eat healthy and only complains when I serve green beans or Brussels sprouts.

My 3 year old on the other hand could sniff out a sugar laden treat from 10 miles away.  Most days it’s a struggle to get a banana down him for breakfast, unless I make my Swedish Pancakes with Brown Sugar Bananas, but even then it’s a struggle.  So I make small concessions and try my very best to make good things as appealing as possible.  And this dish is a hit with both my boys.

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Start by chopping the core off the cauliflower and chop into similar sizes.  Add to a pot of water and set to boil for 15 minutes.  The base for the sauce is just a basic white one.  Remove the cooked cauliflower from the pot and drain the water.  To that pot add the butter and cook over medium heat to melt.  Once melted whisk the flour 1 Tablespoon at a time and stir to combine.  Now add the milk and continue to whisk until it starts thickening.  It’s time to add the spices.

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Four simple ingredients: salt, pepper, garlic powder then Parmesan.  I love the powder kind and use it constantly.  Now the fifth spice is really what makes this dish a stand out~nutmeg.  A few years back I was watching The Rachel Ray Show and she recommended adding nutmeg to cheese sauces.  Ever since then that is what I’ve done.  Who am I to question Rachel Ray!

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Once you’ve added the spices and Parmesan whisk to combine then add 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese and stir until melted and combined completely.  Add the cauliflower back into the pot and stir the sauce and cauliflower so that it covers every piece.  Cheesy……so good!  Put the cauliflower into a greased oven proof bowl then sprinkle with the reminding 1/4 cup cheddar cheese.  Put into a 350 degree preheated oven for 15 minutes.  This is the perfect kid friendly recipe to add to any dish.  And here you are……

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

As always thank you to our Sunday Supper host this week, Anne from Simple and Savory.  If you want more vegetable recipes to make kids happy check out all these other recipes from Sunday Supper bloggers.

Sunday Supper Kid Friendly Vegetable Recipes

Breakfast

Dinners

Sides

Snacks

For even more kid friendly vegetables check out these Vegetable Recipes for Picky Eaters by The Sunday Supper Movement

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

 

Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten #sidedish #cauliflower #kidfriendly
Print Recipe
Cheesy Cauliflower
Tender cauliflower is combined with a light cheese sauce. A veggie side dish that is kid approved.
Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Side Dish
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Side Dish
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cheesy Cauliflower | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Start by chopping the core off the cauliflower and chop into similar sizes. Add to a pot of water and set to boil for 15 minutes.
  2. Remove the cooked cauliflower from the pot and drain the water. To that pot add the butter and cook over medium heat to melt. Once melted whisk the flour 1 Tablespoon at a time and stir to combine. Now add the milk and continue to whisk until it starts thickening.
  3. Now add salt, pepper, garlic powder, nutmeg then Parmesan.
  4. Once you've added the spices and Parmesan whisk to combine then add 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese and stir until melted and combined completely.
  5. Add the cauliflower back into the pot and stir the sauce and cauliflower so that it covers every piece.
  6. Put the cauliflower into a greased oven proof bowl then sprinkle with the reminding 1/4 cup cheddar cheese.
  7. Put into a 350 degree preheated oven for 15 minutes. Enjoy!
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Wing Sauce Sliders

I’ll be upfront right now. And this may make me unpopular but for a long time I couldn’t even smell Buffalo Wing Sauce. In fact it’s been over a decade that even looking at the sauce would give me chills. Flash back 2003….my husband had just won Virginia’s Strongest Man. We actually had friends in the area so we went out and celebrated afterwards at a local wing place. Well, let’s just say that I ‘Celebrated’ a little too much **insert you shaking your head here because most of us have ‘been there’**.

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten

So, there’s that. But I can FINALLY say that after my pregnancy with my youngest my taste buds must have been awakened because I craved spicy stuff constantly and have been on the Wing Sauce bandwagon ever since. I’m like ‘Let’s put it on everything!’ Just like I do with these Wing Sauce Sliders.

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Not only have my tastes changed over the years but my entertainment habits have too.  Now instead of going out and getting crazy I much prefer staying at home and spending Mitten Movie Nights  making a great meal and pairing it with some great beer while watching some great entertainment.  Ok, now on to the food!

First you will prepare your chicken. Cut the pieces down to size for as many sliders as you are expecting to prepare. After cutting them into as many pieces as you have buns (I had 12) pound them out with a mallet to thin them out. This helps to tenderize them and you don’t have to cook them as long so they turn out a little juicer.

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Add vegetable oil to the pan. I usually use about 1/2 cup. Bring oil to a temperature that will ‘fry’ the chicken breasts. You can test by adding a little of the dredging mixture and see if it sizzles. While that is heating up put 1/2 cup flour onto a plate. Dredge the chicken so it is coated on all sides of the chicken. Test to see if oil is hot enough. If it is add chicken to pan.  Cook first side around 6-8 minutes–DO NOT TOUCH IT once it’s in the oil. I’m telling you, you want the crunchy part of this chicken to stay intact because it’s delicious and you will ruin it if you mess with it. Ok, rant over :’) Flip over (again, only 1 time) and cook another 6-8 minutes. Remove from pan and let drain on paper towel.

While your chicken is cooking make up the sauces to go with these. First off let’s start with the Garlic Parmesan Sauce.  Mix all the ingredients together in a covered bowl. Once the chicken is cooked take the amount of you want to have the Garlic Parmesan sauce on it and add to bowl with the combined sauce. Cover & shake. Go ahead and get your arm workout for the day.

WingSauceSliders_1f

For the Buffalo Wing sliders just take some Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce and add it to a covered bowl. Just like with the Garlic Parmesan sauce shake the daylights out of it until the sauce covers all parts of the chicken.

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten

The topper for these sliders is a Blue Cheese Sauce that is a perfect combination with the bite of the cheese, creaminess and then the crunch of the celery.  The perfect topping!

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Put chicken onto your slider buns. Viola!  Take your sauce & slather it all over the top of your sliders. Add tomato and lettuce so you get your veggies. And here you are……

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Originally published May, 2016. Updated photos & recipe.

Garlic Parmesan Sauce adapted from Raining Hot Coupons

Blue Cheese Dressing adapted from Domestic Superhero

 

Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten #buffalosauce #sliders #chickensandwich
Print Recipe
Wing Sauce Sliders
Crunchy chicken on soft slider buns slathered in Wing Sauce then topped with Blue Cheese & Celery Sauce.
Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sliders
Servings
sliders
Ingredients
Chicken for Wing Sauce Sliders
Garlic Parmesan Sauce
Buffalo Wing Sauce
Blue Cheese & Celery Sauce
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sliders
Servings
sliders
Ingredients
Chicken for Wing Sauce Sliders
Garlic Parmesan Sauce
Buffalo Wing Sauce
Blue Cheese & Celery Sauce
Wing Sauce Sliders | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Chicken for Wing Sauce Sliders
  1. Add vegetable oil to the pan. Bring oil to a temperature that will 'fry' the chicken breasts.
  2. Dredge the chicken in flour so it is coated on all sides of the chicken. Test to see if oil is hot enough. If it is add chicken to pan.
  3. Cook 6-8 minutes each side. Only turning once.
  4. Remove from pan and let drain on paper towel.
Garlic Parmesan Sauce
  1. Mix all ingredients together in a covered bowl.
  2. Add cooked chicken to covered bowl. Cover & shake.
Buffalo Wing Sauce
  1. Add sauce and cooked chicken to covered bowl. Cover & shake.
Blue Cheese & Celery Sauce
  1. Chop your celery and mix with all other ingredients together.
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Cast Iron Onion Burgers

Did you know that May is National Burger Month?  One of my earliest memories involved a burger and a pretty funny story from my childhood.  My Dad loves to cook on the grill.  One day he made burgers and I did not like it so I fed it to…my dog.  Needless to say he was not happy. I should have felt bad but the dog looked so happy so I think I remember it being worth it.  As an adult though I am a HUGE burger lover.  This includes one that I make in my new favorite kitchen essential, the Cast Iron pan.  That’s why I call this the Cast Iron Onion Burger.

Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten

This Mitten Movie Night is kicking off Season 3 of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  With the burgers we’re drinking some Hoptronix from New Holland.  Do you agree that hops go with everything?  I think my husband would because they are his favorite types of beer.  Now on to the food.

Let’s start with the patties.  Take the ground hamburger and add Worcestershire Sauce, A1 Sauce, salt and pepper and mix.  Form into 4 burgers.  Shake the dry rub on top, this makes a nice little flavor crust when cooked in the cast iron skillet.

Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Place the cast iron skillet on the stove top and heat on medium/high for 3-4 minutes to get it good and hot.  Add oil to the pan.  Place onions let sizzle for a few seconds then place burger on top.  To cook the burger as evenly as possible cover with a lid. I got my pan as a set through Walmart the Pioneer Woman collection and the top fit great.  Cook 8 minutes, that was the ‘sweet spot’ on medium heat.

Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Now flip over the burger so the onions are on top.  Cook 6 minutes.  Add cheese then cover again and cook an additional 2-3 minutes to melt.  Check the center for desired coloring.  I like my burgers cooked all the way through so the times stated above are what I used.  Please Note: Check your pan and stove directions to make sure that you do not consume under cooked meat.  

For any burger or sandwich a toasted bun is a must!  Take the buns and smother in some butter and cook on a sheet pan for around 5 minutes.  Now it’s sauce time!  I just whipped together mayonnaise and horseradish sauce.  Top the toasted bun with the burger.  Smother as much as you like of the sauce on the bun.  And here you are…..

Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten #nationalburgermonth #burgerrecipe #onionburger
Print Recipe
Cast Iron Onion Burgers
Juicy beef patty is cooked atop a layer of onions in a cast iron skillet. Flip only once then add cheese and cook until gooey and melty. Finish with a tangy two ingredient horseradish sauce.
Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Burger
Servings
burgers
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Burger
Servings
burgers
Ingredients
Cast Iron Onion Burgers | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Take the ground hamburger and add Worcestershire Sauce, A1 Sauce, salt and pepper and mix. Form into 4 patties. Shake the dry rub on top.
  2. Place the cast iron skillet on the stove top and heat on medium/high for 3-4 minutes to get it good and hot.
  3. Add oil to the pan. Place onions let sizzle for a few seconds then place burger on top.
  4. To cook the burger as evenly as possible cover with a lid. Cook 8 minutes, that was the 'sweet spot' on medium heat.
  5. Flip over so the onions are on top. Cook 6 minutes. Add cheese then cover again and cook an additional 2-3 minutes to melt.
  6. Take the buns and smother in some butter and cook on a sheet pan for around 5 minutes.
  7. Whip together mayonnaise and horseradish sauce. Top the toasted bun with the burger. Smother as much as you like of the sauce on the bun. Enjoy!
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Cupcakes & Measuring-Get Kids Cooking

I am excited this week to have Education.com as a guest poster! My first ever. This fun recipe combines the fun of getting kids in the kitchen and learning. Big A right now is learning measurements so this is a great project. And the cooler weather has me thinking Fall so the recipe can’t be beat.

Cupcakes & Measurements | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Missing the flavors of fall? For those of you who are “apple people” all year long – and who may have kids who are – try baking these scrumptious spiced apple cupcakes! At a quick glance, these lovely little treats look like caramel apples. But look again and you’ll see that they’re actually soft, delicious cupcakes coated in caramel. Baking is a great way for your child to practice important math skills like measurement and fractions, while she prepares some delicious food for the family. No doubt about it, these cupcakes are as much fun to make as they are to eat!

Print Recipe
Bake Caramel Apple Spiced Cupcakes
Spiced apples are added to cake & pudding mix then topped with a rich caramel glaze. All the flavors of Fall!
Cupcakes & Measurements | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Dessert
Cuisine Cupcakes
Servings
cupcakes
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Cuisine Cupcakes
Servings
cupcakes
Ingredients
Cupcakes & Measurements | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. Line 24 cups on your cupcake pans with paper liners. Set the pans aside.
  3. Prepare the cupcake batter: Place the drained apple rings in the food processor and finely chop them with the pulse button for 15 seconds.
  4. Place the cake mix, pudding mix, chopped apple rings, water, oil, and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for about 30 seconds.
  5. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula to make sure all of the batter is incorporated. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed. The batter should look well combined.
  6. Spoon or scoop about 1/4 cup batter into each lined cupcake cup, filling it two thirds of the way. You will get between 22 and 24 cupcakes.
  7. Remove the empty liners if any and fill the empty cups in the pan each with a small amount of water. Place the pans side by side in the oven.
  8. Bake the cupcakes until they are golden and the top springs back when lightly pressed with your finger, about 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for about 5 minutes.
  9. Gently remove the cupcakes from the pans and place them on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes before glazing.
  10. Meanwhile, prepare the caramel glaze: Unwrap the caramels and place them in a medium-size saucepan. Add the evaporated milk. Stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat until all the caramels are melted and the mixture is combined, about 5 to 6 minutes. At the very end, stir in the vanilla.
  11. Immediately spoon the warm caramel glaze over the top of each cooled cupcake and sprinkle the chopped peanuts around the edges. Careful! The caramel will be hot and this part can get pretty sticky too!
  12. Push a craft stick in the center of each cupcake, if desired, to make them look like caramel apples. The cupcakes are ready to serve and enjoy!
  13. Store these cupcakes, in a cake saver, under a glass dome or in a large tupperware container, at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Or freeze them (without the craft sticks), wrapped in aluminum foil or in a cake saver, for up to 6 months. Thaw the cupcakes overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
Recipe Notes

*The Cupcake Doctor Says...

If you can't find spiced apples, you can use fresh apples as a substitute. Cut 3 to 4 fresh apples (any kind you like) into slices and throw them into a saut*The Cupcake Doctor Says...

If you can't find spiced apples, you can use fresh apples as a substitute. Cut 3 to 4 fresh apples (any kind you like) into slices and throw them into a saute pan with 1/3 cup of water, about a Tbsp of sugar, and a sprinkling of cinnamon and nutmeg. Saute over medium low heat for a few minutes until the apples are tender. Once they've cooled for a few minutes, chop them up or throw them into the food processor for a rough chop. Add the apples to the batter and follow the recipe accordingly. These cupcakes are perfect for parties, and they look beautiful lined up on a wooden tray!
e pan with 1/3 cup of water, about a Tbsp of sugar, and a sprinkling of cinnamon and nutmeg. Saute over medium low heat for a few minutes until the apples are tender. Once they've cooled for a few minutes, chop them up or throw them into the food processor for a rough chop. Add the apples to the batter and follow the recipe accordingly. These cupcakes are perfect for parties, and they look beautiful lined up on a wooden tray!

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Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad with Lime-Cilantro Dressing

I have to admit that I have never imaged that I would one day say that a ‘taco salad’ was appealing to me. In a sense, isn’t a taco in general, a taco salad? It has all the elements it’s just assembled differently and adds a lot more lettuce—and is that a good thing? Up until I made this recipe I would say a definite, “No!”  My mind changed though when I decided to play around in the kitchen and created this Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad.

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten

For this Cinco de Mayo inspired Mitten Movie Night I remade and shot one of the very first posts I made.  Wow, has my photography came a long way.  Guess what though?  The recipe was just as delicious then as it is now.  Okay enough patting myself on the back !  We are drinking some Modelo Especial and catching up on Better Call Saul.  If you don’t follow me on social media you may not have heard that we recently moved into a new house :’)  So in between moving and everything we haven’t had time to catch up on the 2nd Season that just started. This show is in my Top 5 of shows, it’s awesome. If you are interested in 5 shows that I am in love with for future viewing here they are:

  1. 30 Rock.  Tina Fey is my idol. The question ‘Who would you want to have lunch with dead or alive.’ It would be her 100%.  A close 2nd would be Steve Martin. A 3rd would be any cast of any season of Saturday Night Live. Some great things have come out of that show.
  2. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  So cute! And of course let me refer to #1…Produced my Tina Fey.
  3. Shameless.  All of the actors in this series are spot on.
  4. A new one that just came out and surprised me was Santa Clarita Diet.  It reminded me a lot of Weeds.  Great show!
  5. And finally Better Call Saul.

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Now let’s get on to the food!  When I first made this I had the intention of making the taco bowls on my own using flour tortillas but then scratched that when I found these Fiesta Flats.  They worked out perfectly because we ate them like tacos with a little flair and then the 3 yr old could scoop his goodies by himself.

First for the taco salad, let’s get our meat and beans cooking on the stove top. Add your chorizo and ground hamburger to a pan.  I was sad that when I had plans to make this I found a great recipe from Mexican Please on how to make your own Easy Homemade Chorizo but I wasn’t able to find chilies in our local grocery store so I did purchase the local fare.  If you have a chance though check out this recipe and make it for yourself!

Sprinkle the cumin and chili powder on top. Start sautéing everything together over medium/high heat until the sausage and meat are completely cooked through and no longer pink.  When cooked put the meat into a strainer to drain off the grease, chorizo has tons of it and you don’t want it making your taco shells soggy.  Drain, drain, drain!

Now the best part in my opinion, the lime-cilantro dressing. It’s amazing and well worth getting out and cleaning your food processor (can you tell I find this to be a chore?) Put all ingredients in the food processor-EXCEPT THE OIL.

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Ok, now we can get to the oil. Put the lid on your food processor and you will then pour the oil slowly into the top while it chops up the ingredients you’ve already put into the bowl. When it gets to the consistency you like then stop adding. I put a ½ cup of oil as a general rule but you may like it a little chunkier (that’s how I prefer it) over runny. Trust me, once you make this you will make it again and again so adjust until you get it the way you like it.

I also recently perfected some rice that is amazing with anything that is spicy inspired.  This recipe is as simple as buying one of those pre-made packets. We live close to an amazing restaurant El Rodeo.  Everything they serve is pretty amazing and I wanted to recreate it at home and I think I nailed it! Just add rice, water, tomato & chicken bouillons, spices then frozen veggies as you like-I use corn & peas.  Now if only I can remake their Enchilada Sauce….I could eat that stuff in a bowl with a spoon it’s so good.

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Layer as you see fit.  I prefer lettuce, meat, cheese, tomatoes, green onion then the Lime-Cilantro Dressing.  Heat up some refried beans and plate the rice.  Add some avocado and sour cream on top if desired. And here you are….

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten #tacosalad #cincodemayo #chorizo
Print Recipe
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad with Lime-Cilantro Dressing
Beef & spicy chorizo tucked into taco flats then layered with lettuce, tomatoes, green onions and cheese. Top with some delicious Lime-Cilantro Dressing for an extra kick. Fiesta time!
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad
Lime-Cilantro Dressing
Mexican Rice
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
Ingredients
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad
Lime-Cilantro Dressing
Mexican Rice
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Chorizo & Beef Taco Salad
  1. Add your chorizo and ground hamburger. Sprinkle the cumin and chili powder on top. Start sautéing everything together until the sausage and meat are completely cooked through and no longer pink. When cooked put the meat into a strainer to drain off.
Lime-Cilantro Dressing
  1. Add all ingredients but the oil. Put the top on the food processor. Add oil into the top funnel and blend until the consistency you prefer.
Mexican Rice
  1. Just add rice, water, tomato & chicken bouillons, spices then frozen veggies as you like-I use corn & peas.
  2. Layer as you see fit. I prefer lettuce, meat, cheese, tomatoes, green onion then the Lime-Cilantro Dressing. Heat up some refried beans and plate the rice. Add some avocado and sour cream on top if desired. Enjoy!
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Sheet Pan Salmon #SundaySupper

While I’ve never been one to cook seafood at home I decided to give it a spin since I’ve been wanting to add some fish to our diets.  The one that I have been making lately has been a huge hit at dinnertime and that’s what I like to call ‘Sheet Pan Salmon’.

Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten

To say that this dinner is family friendly would be an understatement.  My 10 year old LOVES seafood.  I was a little worried what the 3 year old would think since he can tend to be a picky eater but he gobbled up a few pieces I cut then asked for more.  Even my husband who isn’t a big seafood eater liked it.  For me I’ve always enjoyed seafood and salmon especially.  Growing up my family was full of adventurous eaters and I’m hoping my boys will be too as I expand my home cooking skills.

The fish that I used was on sale and already came seasoned with a spicy peppercorn marinade.  You can choose one already seasoned, it really added to the flavor of the dish and wasn’t overpowered by the topping I added.  This will take one average sized sheet pan.  Cover with tin foil then oil it so the fish doesn’t stick.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Wash and chop the asparagus (my favorite-check out my other Sunday Supper recipe Asparagus Soup), chop the onions then put them both in a bowl.  Drizzle with 1 Tbs oil, salt and pepper.  Stir to coat all the veggies.  Now combine the ingredients for the creamy topping: mayo, Parmesan cheese, garlic, artichoke hearts and lemon juice.

Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Place the fish onto the greased sheet pan.  Take the asparagus mixture and layer around the salmon.  Spread the mayonnaise mixture on top the salmon.   For the crunchy topping you can easily use breadcrumbs to top this off why not crush up some homemade croutons?  Place it all into the preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes.

I served this meal with some mashed sweet potatoes.  So sweet and creamy they were a perfect balance with the fish.  And here you…..

Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

I would like to thank this weeks Sunday Supper host Claire McEwen of Sprinkles & Spouts.  For more sensational seafood recipes check these out……

25+ Best Sunday Supper Seafood Recipes

Appetizers

Main Dishes

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten #SundaySupper #salmon #seafood #bakedsalmon
Print Recipe
Sheet Pan Salmon
Salmon is coated in a creamy sauce and topped with crunchy breadcrumbs. Baked in 30 minutes until flaky. A sheet pan supper for the whole family.
Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Seafood
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Seafood
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Sheet Pan Salmon | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. On an average sized sheet pan. Cover with tin foil then oil it so the fish doesn't stick.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  3. Wash and chop the asparagus, chop the onions then put them both in a bowl. Drizzle with 1 Tbs oil, salt and pepper. Stir to coat all the veggies.
  4. Combine the ingredients for the creamy topping: mayo, Parmesan cheese, garlic, artichoke hearts and lemon juice.
  5. Place the fish onto the greased sheet pan.
  6. Take the asparagus mixture and spread around the salmon.
  7. Spread the mayonnaise mixture on top the salmon.
  8. Cover the top with breadcrumbs or crushed croutons.
  9. Place it all into the preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes. Enjoy!
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Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes

Can you believe it’s already been 2 months since Super Bowl?  Geesh!  This recipe is an inspiration from a dip that I made for it.  Quick Tomato Jalapeno Popper Dip from A Joyfully Mad Kitchen. Earlier that day I was browsing through Pinterest and found this recipe then made a special trip to the store just so I could make it.  Worth it! It was just the special treat I was looking for.

While I ate and ate…..and ate on it (I couldn’t stop myself!) I thought about how great this would taste if I used it for the filling in my Cream Cheese Stuffed Chicken Roll Ups.  Touchdown! I had a winner.  Pair it with some potatoes sprinkled with my favorite Cajun seasoning and we have a dinner, Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten

For this Mitten Movie Night we are drinking some Rapunzel from Arcadia Ales and watching Office Christmas Party.  I know we are way off on seasons here but we don’t judge!  I really love Arcadia Ales and recently paired my Under The Troll Bridge Pasties with their Hopmouth.  That was a great meal and so is this one.  The fruit and hop combo cannot be beat with the spiciness of this dish.

The chicken and potatoes can be made in two dishes but cooked together to save the guess work.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Starting with chopping the potatoes and onions into bite sized cubes.  Drizzle with oil and Cajun seasoning then stir to combine and add to a small greased baking dish.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Thank you again to the Checkered Chef for letting me try out their awesome products!

For the chicken stuffing combine the jalapenos, chilies, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cheese, softened cream cheese and sour cream then stir to combine.  Slice each chicken breast horizontally to make 2 equally sized pieces-will make 8 in total.  Take a tenderizer with the flat side and pound out the chicken until it’s about 1/2 inch thick.  Spread filing on the middle of the chicken then roll.  Roll into the chicken coating then place in greased baking dish.

Put both dishes into the preheated over and cook for 45 minutes.  Plate, crack open a beer and here you are….

Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten #chicken #jalapenopopper #beerpairing

 

 

 

Print Recipe
Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes
Chicken is filled with creamy and spicy jalapeno, green chilies and cream cheese then baked. Comes out of the oven crispy and full of popper perfection.
Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chicken
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cajun Potatoes
Jalapeno Popper Chicken
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chicken
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cajun Potatoes
Jalapeno Popper Chicken
Jalapeno Popper Chicken with Cajun Potatoes | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Cajun Potatoes
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. First cut each breast through the center creating two separate but equal pieces. Starting with chopping the potatoes and onions into bite sized cubes.
  3. Drizzle with oil and Cajun seasoning then stir to combine and add to a small greased baking dish.
Jalapeno Popper Chicken
  1. Combine the jalapenos, chilies, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cheese, softened cream cheese and sour cream then stir to combine.
  2. Slice each chicken breast horizontally to make 2 equally sized pieces-will make 8 in total.
  3. Take a tenderizer with the flat side and pound out the chicken until it's about 1/2 inch thick.
  4. Spread filing on the middle of the chicken then roll. Roll into the chicken coating then place in greased baking dish.
  5. Put both dishes into the preheated over and cook for 45 minutes. Enjoy!
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