Every time I sit down to write a post, I see a squirrel (aka I get distracted with other things, ADD-style). In some ways that is good. It means I’m getting things done, which I am. I have a mission of productivity when I get to the computer lately, and I’ve been better at keeping with that mission. It has been a productive week for me. Clothes a’ washing, drying on the line, freezer defrosted (more on that in another post), continue to keep my flowers alive out front (not a small feat for a black-thumb like myself), paid bills, got kids appointments made and completed (no missed appointments this week)… the list goes on and on. I feel satisfied. More content when I allow myself to accomplish tasks and stay on track.
For a long time I’ve put other things first; I’m working on not doing that as much. Not in a means of being selfish and all-important, but with the intent to make sure that I am fulfilling the needs and obligations of myself and my family. Giving that the priority it demands. When I don’t, I feel life spinning out of control, bills being paid late, meals being ordered in because I didn’t prepare, home being embarrassingly messy — things that don’t make for a happy home.
In that effort, I’ve been spending my time online looking for recipes to add to my ever-growing collection. The past few days I’ve been trying to eat what we have and make less runs to the store. My success has been about 60%, which is up from before. Knowing that I had some ground turkey and beef in the freezer, I opted to get it out the night before to thaw. Doing this took a little bit of planning (find recipe, remove from freezer). Not much, but a bit. The peace of mind I had, though, knowing what we were having for dinner the next day is worth something.
I’m also working on minding my food and taking better care of my body again, so I explored sparkpeople for a bit, hoping to turn up something new and tasty. I found a recipe for Diet Coke Sloppy Joes and did a little bit of modifying.
16 oz. 96% ground beef
1 cup diet coke
2/3 cup reduced sugar ketchup
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp dry mustard
Brown ground beef in skillet. Drain beef and add back to skillet. Add remaining ingredients and stir well. Cook on low for 30 minutes uncovered so sauce can thicken. You can also add onions or green peppers if you’d like.
Number of Servings: 4
I doubled, using the beef/turkey mix; drained, put in crockpot. Then I took some frozen chopped green peppers and put that in the pot, heated them a bit, adding the ketchup (not reduced sugar – don’t have it), Worcestershire, vinegar (used apple cider instead), dry mustard, and 2 tsp of garlic (I love garlic). After I mixed that around a bit, I added the Coke (I used Coke Zero). I poured this over the meat in the crock, added about 2T of dried onion flakes, mixed it all up and set it on high. I cooked it for about 1.5 hours on high, stirring it here and there, and then let it simmer with the lid off for half an hour or so. It smelled delicious and tasted good, too. Everyone thought it was yummy. It was less saucy than a Manwich, or “traditional” sloppy joes, but I liked it for something different and bit dryer. Doubled, I would say that it fed a little more than 8 with 2 sandwiches each (approx. 1/4 cup per serving).
I love my crockpot.