Autumn Travels

Autumn always seems to be a busy time for us. Mike goes back to school ( to teach) and until recently I would go back as well to study.Now traveling has been added to our fall activities list! These are short trips but trips nonetheless.  Earlier in September we traveled to Madison for Megan and Bryan’s wedding.

Last weekend we went up to Minnesota to visit my family. It was so nice to see them! Even if it was only for one full day 😦  We spent most of the time eating my Mom’s delicious food and catching up on each other’s lives. Andre’s girlfriend Sam stopped by Sat night with her friend Jessica and joined us for dinner. I have enjoyed getting to know her  a little better with each visit to MN 🙂

Next weekend I am heading to Door County for the annual girls trip. All the women in Mike’s family go to Door County, WI every October for a weekend of shopping and food! This will be my 4th year going, I already have my list of stores I want to go to and ingredients I need to bring. I am planning on making 3 dishes that weekend and I thought I’d share the recipes with you here. Two I found on blogs I follow and one I got from my Mom. They are great for group gatherings and have already given me many happy memories with my loved ones. Enjoy!

Fruit Salsa w/ Homemade Cinnamon & Sugar Chips

1 fuji apple, peeled, cored, diced

1 cup sliced strawberries

2 kiwis, peeled and diced

2 bananas, peeled and sliced

1 tbsp fresh lime juice

2 tbsp white sugar

1 tbsp brown sugar

3 tbsp fruit preserves, any flavor

In a medium bowl, mix together fruit, lime juice, white & brown sugar, fruit preserves. Cover & chill in the refrigerator approx. 20 min. Preheat oven to 375. Coat one side of each flour tortilla with butter flavored cooking spray. Cut into wedges and arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Sprinkle wedges with desired amount of cinnamon sugar. Spray again with cooking spray. Bake in the preheated oven 8-10 min. Repeat with any remaining tortilla wedges. Allow to cool approx. 15 minutes. Serve with chilled fruit mixture.

Overnight Pecan French Toast

1 loaf cinnamon bread, sliced

6 eggs

1 & 1/2 cups milk

1 & 1/2 cups half-and-half

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp cinnamon

Topping~

1/2 cup butter, softened

2 tbsp maple syrup

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup chopped pecans

Arrange bread in a lightly greased 13×9 pan, set aside. In a bowl, beat together eggs, milk, half-and half, vanilla extract, nutmeg, and cinnamon, pour over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, combine the topping mixture, pour over toast. Bake at a preheated 350 degree oven for 45-55 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Hot Dip

2lb lean ground beef

2 rolls Jimmy Dean Sausage ( 1 regular, 1 hot)

1 can Jalapenos

1 can green chiles

1 small can tomato paste

1 large can tomato sauce ( Hunt’s or another thinner plain style)

2 lb Velveeta Cheese

Brown meats. Add all other ingredients except cheese. Mix well and let simmer a bit. Add cheese ( cut up into small pieces) and mix over heat until cheese is melted. Serve in small crock pot to keep warm.

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