Organized Chaos

Life as an Associate Pastor's wife: community, family and God

Iron Chef Jessica March 10, 2010

Filed under: Cooking — Jessi @ 8:50 am

Ok, so I’m not really an Iron Chef, or that great of a cook, but for a few weeks now, I have been trying to plan/organize dinner for each week. I take one day each week, which is usually Saturday or Monday to find at least 3-4 recipes that sound unique yet appetizing. I think my strategy has worked great so far. Billy and I have enjoyed turkey burgers, Moroccan chicken with chickpeas and curry, steak fajita quesadillas, crispy ranch chicken, and the list goes on.

Below is how I implemented my strategy:

1. Find at least 3-4 recipes for the week. You can find more or less depending on how much you like to eat out. ( and are my favs)

2. Print recipes on cardstock. I get 4 recipes on 1 sheet of 8.5 X 11, and then cut in quarters for easy handling.

3. Make a grocery list with all necessary ingredients.

4. Write the weekly menu on a dry erase board or chalkboard. This really helps you know what you have bought so that all that food doesn’t go to waste. And it also allows for flexibility if you need to change things around… just because you write Chicken Parmesan for Monday doesn’t mean that you can’t move it to Friday!

5. Cook your delicious recipes and ENJOY!

Please share your cooking / recipe secrets with us! What works for you? What doesn’t work for you?


Fun + Fondant = Fundant October 12, 2009

Filed under: Cooking,Entertainment — Jessi @ 7:33 am

Our first attempt at making a cake covered in fondant. It turned out pretty good... thanks to Billy!


I laid down for a short nap... more like 3 1/2 hours, and when I woke up this is what I saw. I'm so impressed with my man's pastry skills!


Jim and Pam got married on The Office this past week... hence the cake topper. Our friends came over to celebrate!


Smores With A Twist September 24, 2009

Filed under: Cooking — Jessi @ 9:23 am


If I haven’t said it before I love baking! The other night my cousin and I made these delicious Smores Cupcakes. They turned out moist and delicious.

The cupcake part can be any chocolate cake you like (we used Martha’s One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes)


1/2-3/4 lb. (2 or 3 sticks) butter, room temperature
1 lb. (2 cups) confectioner’s sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
16 oz. tub of marshmallow cream

Cream the butter on high until it’s light and fluffy. Add the confectioner’s sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, and beat until fluffy each time. Beat in the vanilla until incorporated. Then dump in the marshmallow cream and mix it up ’til it’s all creamy. Transfer to pastry bag (if desired) and pipe onto cupcakes! (You can also cut the corner off a Ziploc bag and use that instead.)

The tops are dusted with graham cracker crumbs, and each cupcake is topped with a square of Hershey’s chocolate.



Mexigrills September 18, 2009

Filed under: Cooking,Entertainment — Jessi @ 7:30 am

Last night was The Office season premiere so we had our friends over for the big debut. The highlight of the night for me was introducing everyone to my new creation. It’s a cross between a quesadilla and grilled cheese sandwich. I call them Mexigrills. They were a big hit and so simple to make which is what I’m all about. Our friends loved the recipe so much that we had a cooking lesson before watching The Office. It was so much fun!  Okay, so it’s not true Mexican, but it’s a quick appetizer that your friends, kids, and family can help make.


Ingredients: Flour/wheat tortillas, Mexican shredded cheese (I used Sargento – any kind will do), butter and salt

On top of the stove on low to medium heat, heat butter and salt to give pan a nice coating. Then place your tortilla flat in the pan. Next place cheese (as much as you like) on top of the tortilla, then fold in half. Cook until it is to a crispy golden brown. Half into 2 triangular shapes. Last, but not least…ENJOY!


Homemade Donuts June 10, 2009

Filed under: Cooking — Jessi @ 9:16 am

Homemade Donuts

Homemade Donuts

Homemade Donuts

In honor of National Donut Day, which falls on the first Friday of June every year, we tried our hand at homemade donuts. We used biscuit dough for the batter, pierced the center to make it look like a donut, and then deep fried them. I made a homemade glaze (warm a 1/4 cup of milk and vanilla on stove. remove from heat. slowly add in 2 cups of powdered sugar to milk and vanilla.) which was sugary goodness! Our donuts are no Krispy Kreme, but it was fun making them as a family.


PB Cheesecake Brownie Babies March 30, 2009

Filed under: Cooking,Entertainment,Me — Jessi @ 8:55 pm

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Babies

Baking is one of my favorite things. I don’t do it as often as I’d like, but tonight I got to bake with my cousin Rachel. Great company and yummy recipes equal good times! This was nothing like my Easy Bake Oven baking experience that I talked about in my previous post!  Click here to find out how to make these Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Babies!


Blast From The Past #1 March 26, 2009

Filed under: Cooking,Entertainment,Me — Jessi @ 9:01 am

Easy Bake Oven

Remember the first time that you started cooking on your own?

One year for my birthday I begged my mom to get me an Easy Bake Oven. I was so excited when I unwrapped my gifts and found the present I had been hoping for!  I delved right into preparing my first Easy Bake Oven creation. It was either a chocolate cake or brownies. I was so excited! I read the directions and mixed all the ingredients together, but there was one problem. The mixture looked too dry so I added more water. Lots of water! I put my tiny little creation in the tiny little slot that is supposed to be an oven, and I waited and waited and waited… I finally took the brownies out of the oven only to find them still not done. I had no clue what I did wrong. That’s when I learned that it’s usually best to follow the directions when baking. We ended up eating the brownies with a spoon.

I’ve had many more baking mishaps since that day; like the time I tried to melt carmel and ruined my mom’s pot, making icing that turned out like syrup (still tasted pretty good), sticking a perforated pan in the oven and having burnt cookie dough rain down out of it, lots of boilover incidents, many burnt cinnamon buns, and the list goes on… I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t accept that offer from Johnson and Wales to study to be a pastry chef! I have to admit I’ve come a long way. I’m even getting good at improvising and putting my own spin on recipes.