Saturday, September 18, 2010

Dinner With The In-Laws

Well, the in-laws arrived as planned on Thursday evening.   I'm proud to say that the house was in good shape after my week of cleaning and prepping. 
I actually came home from work a bit early Thursday night just to do some last minute cleaning.  I had some ripe bananas, so I decided to throw a quick batch of banana bread together for us to have for breakfast Friday morning.

One of my favorite recipes for Banana Bread is one that my mom has used since I was little.  Big Bird Banana Bread. 

My mom made me a binder style cook book of family recipes when I graduated from college and this is one that is in there.

How cute is my mom?
Anyway, it's a short ingredient, easy recipe, so I quickly threw it together and in to the oven it went to bake:

Thursday morning I planned ahead by deciding to cook a pot roast in the crock pot all day while I was at work so we'd have an easy meal to come home to that night.  I took a roast (I think it was top or bottom round...) I'd had in the freezer and thawed (I took it out of the freezer and put it in the fridge a couple days before so it would be thawed) and massaged it was some olive and grape seed oil, plus Montreal Steak Grill seasoning and a little rosemary.  I then seared it in pan.
Once all the sides were browned/seared, I added that plus half of a large chopped onion to a can of cream of mushroom soup, about a cup of water, and a package of Lipton Onion Soup Mix. 
I put the crock pot on low and let it do it's thing.
When I got home about 10 hours later, I chopped up some carrots and potatoes and threw those in the crock pot too.  I didn't add them in the morning because I didn't want them to get too mushy if they were in all day.  I figured a couple hours would be enough to soften them, but not turn them into mush.  I was right ;)  A few hours later when the in-laws and my hubby got in, we had the roast and veggies over some egg noodles I cooked.  The onion soup mix, water, and mushroom soup had made a great tasting gravy.  I think we all enjoyed it :)

Then it was time for me to try and salvage my Caramel Salted Brownies.
Thanks for the comments and feedback!  What I ended up doing was turning the oven on low and getting the caramel to soften.  This actually seemed like it was going to work great, but then we all bit in to our brownies and realized our caramel was EXTREMELY  chewy!  Like, my father-in-law couldn't even eat his because he'd just had a lot of dental work done and was worried he'd damage it (doh!).  That chewy!  Still, it tasted good, but the consistency was off. 
Interestingly enough the day after we went back to the pan and the texture had changed AGAIN.  This time the caramel resembed toffee and easily broke.  This was actually the most edible it had been and we all enjoyed the brownie/toffee combo:
Still, I think next time if I ever attempt these brownies again I will try Julie's advice (see the comments in my previous post!)

Dinner was followed by a lot of this:
The in-laws brought their puppy Shiloh, who is about a month older than Clyde.  Clyde has a new friend.  They mostly fought over toys.
Clyde got sly and was able to get things away from Shiloh with bait and switch tactics.
If Shiloh had something he wanted (his favorite purple squeaky ball), he'd bring something else over and try to interest her with it and when she was distracted with the new item, he'd swoop in and get his ball. 
Sly, very sly Clyde.
It kept us amused.

We were all pretty exhausted and crashed early Thursday night!


Joanna said...

have you ever tried chocolate chips in your banana bread? if not, do it. It is AWESOME!

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