I am really excited, we are organizing our first Oregon teacher blogger meet up. Are you an Oregon teacher with a blog? We'd love to meet with you too. Right now there are 6 of us meeting up for a coffee date. The date will probably be Monday morning, June 17th. Exact time and location TBD after we see where everyone is coming from. Please comment or contact me if you might be interested!!! I am super excited!
I was at Sweet Tomatoes awhile back and had the most delicious soup, it was some sort of Thai ginger broth. Next to the pot of broth they had a plethora of toppings that you could add to your soup to customize it. It was so good! Not only was it delicious, it was healthy and filling too. So, I decided to see if I could buy some one night. I went to every grocery store in town and no luck. I even went to the specialty stores, and still no luck. Finally, one night on pintrest I found a recipe and it was amazing. I made it and it was just like the sweet tomatoes soup that I fell in love with. I altered it a bit for my tastes and want to share it with you. Asian Ginger Broth
4 TB finely minced ginger
3 TB finely minced garlic
2 TB canola or olive oil
Combine ingredients in a pot and saute for 5 minutes Then in a separate bowl mix
6 TB corn starch
2 cups cold water
Combine ingredients and whisk to dissolve
Then, in a big pot add
14 cups water
Another couple tablespoons of fresh ginger. This added an element of spice that the cooked ginger didn't.
6 Big Boullian cubes-Veg or chicken will work
Corn starch mixture
Add ingredients to pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add chicken broth if it is too watery for your liking.
Serve with a plethora of fun add-ins that everyone can choose from and sprinkle in their bowls. We used sliced green onions, diced red peppers, shredded carrots, chopping spinach leaves, sliced mushrooms, cubed tofu, noodles. My favorite topping were these garlic ginger won ton strips that I found at Safeway. My boy loved it, ate 3 bowls. It doesn't look filling but it really is. Another healthy, delicious meal!
One of our social studies standards is to understand the local landforms in our area. Although we live in Portland, Oregon, I consider our area the entire Pacific Northwest. Again, it was so difficult to find resources to support an entire unit on this strand. Most everything that is out there is too broad, although Scholastic has a great little landforms project book that is fun. Thus, I had to figure something else out. So, I used some ideas from pintrest and some ideas from tpt and some ideas from other never ending projects to try this out. It was awesome and my kids loved it.
First, I took a manilla file folder and folded it to make a lapbook. Then, I taught my students how to make bubble and block letters to make their covers look "fancy". It was a fun little art lesson. After they were done with their fancy title they were asked to fill in the back ground with landforms. They were also asked to make the manilla coloring disappear and make it collage style using colored pencils.
Once you open the lapbook up, there were several different lessons that we did.
1. Make a list of 6 local landforms and then give a specific example of that landform. For example: Volanoes=Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens.
2.Make a paper pocket on some sort of bright or fun paper. Then write examples for landforms on strips of paper to insert into the pocket.
3. Make a landform collage using magazines. Golfing magazines are the best because they are full of cool landforms.
4. Make a landform flip book. I used the template from this amazing blog called Ginger Snaps. Here is the link to the FREEBIE http://gingersnapstreatsforteachers.blogspot.com/2012/09/landform-flipbook.html
5. Compare a local example of a landform with a non-local example.
Those were the things I did in the inside of the book. On the backside I had them do a landforms wordle. If you haven't yet used wordle, it is such a fun and simple way to integrate technology into a lesson. It's hard to do a good technology lesson when you only get access to computers 30 minutes a week. Here is the link: http://www.wordle.net . Finally, the other flap on the cover was a hand drawn collage.
I love this project because it was never ending. It was easy to keep it simple for those lower kids, yet challenge those TAG kids to keep it interesting. It was something that was broken into little steps so if you only have 20 minutes a day, 3 days a week, this project is easy to get done.
We just started our HM theme 4 animal unit, as soon as we are done we will do the Millmark nonfiction animal text unit, thus it is only fitting to integrate our writing units into this theme. I created this writing outline to help my students organize their writing. I then sent it over to my brilliant, creative, technologically gifted sister to make it pretty (check out her blog HERE). She did exactly that. I am so excited to use this with my kids. It is even tiered so you can keep it simple or make it complex if needed. I have the TAG cluster, so I always need to find a way to enrich their writing. Anyhow, she did an amazing job and it's FREE on TPT. Thanks for leaving her good feedback. http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Animal-Writing-Report-Outline
I just made a chopped greek salad and had no idea just how delicious it would be, so of course I must share.
I chopped up some iceberg lettuce because I love the crunch and texture, plus I knew I would be piling on loads of veggies so I wasn't real worried about the lack of vitamins in this variety. After the lettuce, I diced up some red pepper, cucumber, grape tomatoes, and spread them evenly on the top of the lettuce. I sprinkled some feta and added just a few Kalameta olives as well. In a small frying pan I tossed in a chopped up chicken breast. I knew I would need some greek flavor so I put in 5 whole mint leaves and a teaspoon of curry powder. Once the chicken was finished cooking, I topped my salad with it. Finally, I told a little balsamic salad dressing and drizzled it. Oh my goodness, who would have thought that eating healthy would have been so delicious and filling!
For New Years we had a Finger Food Feast at our house. I didn't want a lot of clean up and I certainly didn't want a big mess. We had both adults and children to please, so this menu has quite the variety and something for everyone. All of these recipes are so quick and easy, and of course are tried and true. I am sure nothing too unique, but if you want a short cut to some of the best recipes around, here is your recipe.
Meatball Sliders-The first thing you see in this photo is probably the plate of sliders. These sliders were a big hit for the kids. They tasted EXACTLY like Subways meatball marinara. I took 12 Costco meatballs and warmed in a cup of pasta sauce. Once they were warm, I put one meatball on each dinner roll and topped with provolone and a dollop of marinara. You can put in the microwave for 45 seconds or bake on low heat. I prefer my bread to be soft so I used the microwave. Poppyseed Pull Apart Poppyseed Bread-Take a big bread bowl and slice in 1" slices. Slice down to the bottom, but not enough to let the bread fall apart. Then, slice crossways. In between each slice put a small sliver of Montery Jack cheese. The cheese will be poking up between the bread slices, a small 8oz. brick will be enough for a large round loaf. Then in a cup melt a stick of butter. Add a bunch (just one bunch) of sliced green onions to the butter. Then add 1T. of poppy seeds to the butter. Stir together and pour evenly over the bread loaf and cheese. Bake at 350 just until the cheese is melty and gooey. Serve warm. This cheesy bread is another kid face. Stuffed Mushrooms-Easiest mushroom recipe EVER! And everyone always copies it for their family functions, so I know it's a "keeper"! First, brown some Jimmy Dean ground sausage(it's already seasoned perfectly) in a pan, when fully cooked add a brick of cream cheese (8oz). Cook together until cheese is melted. Take a pound of mushrooms and take out the stems. When you break them off, it will leave a hollow little hole in the middle. Place on a pie plate or baking dish. Fill with the sausage mixture. I like to sprinkle mine with Cayenne and parsley, but shredded cheese works well too. Bake for 20 minutes at 350.
Jalapeno Poppers with Raspberry Sauce- Cut 25-30 jalapeño peppers, remove stems and seeds. Fill with cream cheese and wrap with a half of slice of bacon. Bake for 20-30 minutes at 400* depending on how crisp you like your bacon. Now for the dipping sauce. Take a quarter cup of raspberry jam and add a teaspoon of the seeds from the jalapeños you just seeded. Mix together and let sit. When ready to serve drop some raspberry sauce on each popper and leave the extra for guests to dip.
Pecan Cheese Ball-In a mixing bowl pix a packet of dry ranch with a T of sour cream. Then add an 8oz. brick of cream cheese and mix together well. Then add 8oz. of shredded cheddar cheese and mix together and chill for at least ten minutes. Now take a pice of saran wrap and spray with cooking spray. Plop the cheese mixture onto the center of the saran wrap. Start to close the saran wrap and turn cheese mix into a solid ball. Once it's a sphere, roll in chopped pecans. Wallah! One bowl and no messy hands! Serve with your favorite cracker.
We also had veggies and BLT sandwiches in fun shapes. I hope your finger food party will be as fun as mine. The prep was so simple, I mad a table full of food in less than 30 minutes. We fed ten people (at dinner time) with plenty of left overs. Yumm-O.
Did you know that carrot cake didn't appear in American cook books until the second half of the twentieth century? Pure craziness, I love carrot cake!!! I love good carrot cake. I don't like any nuts or raisins in my carrot cake. I think carrot cake is so delicious with all of the spices, that the nuts and raisins taint this precious treat. Anyhow, one day I saw this recipe on pinterest and traced it back to Martha Stewart. I should just warn you that you will LITERALLY eat the entire batch, so plan ahead and don't tell anyone you are baking cookies today. The cookies are soft and moist. The filling is like key lime pie good. The lime juice is a must!!!
For The Filling
2 ounces bar cream cheese, room temperature
2 ounces butter, room temperature
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon fresh "lime" juice
For The Cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg yolk
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger or pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup packed, finely grated, peeled carrots
1/3 cup dried "dates"
One more tip, this recipe only makes 24 cookies, and after you sandwich them it really only makes 12 cookies. So, if you plan on sharing them, you will want to double the recipe. You really don't need to share because I consider these to be healthy. They have very little sugar and lots of healthy ingredients!!!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Make filling: With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add sugar and lemon juice; beat until combined. Cover; chill until firm, at least 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make cookies: In a large bowl, whisk together butter, sugars, and egg yolk. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture; stir until combined. Mix in oats, carrots, and currants.
Drop dough by level tablespoons, 2 inches apart, onto prepared baking sheets. Flatten with the palm of your hand. Bake until edges are crisp, rotating baking sheets halfway through, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.
Turn half the cookies over, bottom side up; dollop each with about 1 teaspoon chilled cream-cheese filling. Top with remaining cookies, pressing gently to spread filling to edges. Serve immediately.
I'm another one of those teacher-moms! I have 2 beautiful children. My son is 12 and my daughter will be 3 in October. I'm going on my 12th year teaching at a very diverse school. I love working with children and love being at home with my children. I love being outside and of course love doing new things. My two favorite hobbies are cooking and traveling, well and reading but I can do that while I cook and travel, right?