Week 1 of StoneGable's Farmhouse Kitchen Makeover, and things around here are off to a slow start. Which is a good thing! Because my new sink will take 2 weeks to make, my very nice contractor thought it would be best to leave my current sink and dishwasher in place until this coming week.

But my microwave, stove, desk and glass cabinet are gone. In it's place are the "bones" of what is to come! Venting the fan to the outside went much easier than expected with VERY little demolition! Good news!

Bobby and I spent hours yesterday picking out a back splash area for our cooktop. We "build well" together. I LOVE all the wonderful products that can be made into backsplashes!!!! Especially the glass. But because we are getting soapstone counters and we have a farmhouse inspired home, the glass was not a good match. We went with some beautiful natural stone tiles with oil rubbed bronze medalions. I laid them out so you can get an idea of where we are going with this.

Upcoming this week the sink, dishwasher, counters, island  and cabinet doors go. The coutertop gets templated and the painters begin.

When it rains, it pours! Because I have dishes EVERYWHERE my husband is now, as I am writing this, making me a new dish closet! So another area of my home is in total disarray... I am thrilled about this... a little crazy... but thrilled! The image below is the reason Bobby is making the dish closet today!

To add to the excitement I am having day surgery on my back tomorrow.  Not a huge deal but please pray for me!  I am speaking on Tuesday (my great passion) and my children (oh happy day!) are coming home to visit.  I just may put them to work around here because for some reason every room in my house looks like a  bomb exploded in it!

I have no idea how this weeks menu will go! We have set up a make-shift counter in the eating area of my kitchen. It is sorta like camping... and  am NOT a happy camper... I loathe camping (she says while smiling and gritting her teeth)!

I fancy this whole cooking-while-remodeling process like  being on a food network challenge show..."in this basket you will find an electric rotisserie, a chicken, some wet-wipes, an onion, a cup of drywall dust and hand sanitizer... you can use anything else in the kitchen you find... oops, that's right, there is nothing else...you have 30 minutes.... GO!

We will see how this week rolls along! My expectations are high, but I just may ditch everything and go out to dinner... or move out for the forseeable future!

Our big discussion now is CROWN MOLDING! In the greater scheme of life crown molding is a breeze!  As a matter of fact, all this is!!!!! Just keeping it in perspective and being grateful!

None of my menus this week include cooking with a stove. I am using my slow cooker, small toaster oven, grill, rotisserie, and a smoker. This really is reality TV worthy!!!!!

Monday Slow Cooker Day
Easy Chicken Cacciatore
Spaghetti (not for us, but you make it!)
Ceasar Salad

Recipe: Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore
1 jar good Marinara sauce
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup prepared pesto (click HERE for homemade recipe)
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, pressed
4 skinless chicken breast and 4 drumsticks
4 oz. sliced mushrooms
2 TBS flour
2 TBS water
2 TBS dry red wine

Mix Marinara, cheese and  pesto together in a bowl. Put 1/2 the mixture in the bottom of a slow cooker. Top with onions, pepper, garlic, and then the chicken. Sprinkle chicken with sliced mushrooms and the remainder of the Marinara mixture.

Cook on low for 6-7 hours.  Remove chicken when it is done. Mix flour, water and wine together. Whisk into the sauce in the slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 20 minutes until sauce is thickened. Put chicken back into the sauce and heat through. Serve over spaghetti.

Printable Version

Tuesday: Slow Cooker Day
Slow Cooker Broccoli Cheddar Soup
Crusty Bread

Recipe: Slow Cooker Broccoli Cheddar Soup
This is delicious, rich and full of broccoli flavor. This soup makes a hearty meal! Click HERE for the recipe.It will become a favorite!

Wednesday: Grill Day
StoneGable Hamburgers
Homemade Coleslaw
StoneGable Baked Beans

Recipe: StoneGable Hamburgers
I could eat these once a week! They are that good! So fire up the grill and click HERE for the YUMMY recipe!

Recipe: Homemade Coleslaw
Fresh and tangy, this coleslaw is perfect company for hamburgers!  Click HERE and look for it on Friday's recipe.

Recipe: StoneGable Baked Beans
I'm baking these in my little toaster oven. This should be an adventure! I love a good bowl of baked beans! Sweet and smokey these beans even taste good at room temperature! For this recipe, click Here and look for it on Saturday's menu.

Thursday: Grill Day
Baked Potatoes
Asparagus On The Grill

Out To Dinner

Rotisserie Chicken
Potato Salad
Roasted Broccoli

Recipe: StoneGable Rotisserie Chicken
1 3-4 lb chicken
1 large onions, peeled left whole
olive oil
garlic salt
onion powder
I have a small rotisserie oven. I bought it at a garage sale for $3.00. It makes fabulous meat!!!!

Salt the cavity of the chicken. Stuff the cavity of chicken with the onion. Put it on the rotisserie skewer . Oil outside of chicken and sprinkle with garlic salt and onion powder. Cook it according to weight. Yummy!! Or you can buy a rotisserie chicken at your market...on second thought...

Printable Recipe

Recipe: StoneGable Potato Salad
I'll be using store bought, since I don't have a stove, but I'm sharing this StoneGable classic!

This is my grandmother's recipe. The secret ingredient is sour pickle juice, preferable with garlic!And please use baking potatoes. Regular new potatoes are too full of water content and get mushy. I don't have amounts and measures, however these are close estimates. I just learned by watching and make this from memory. Start with these amounts and see how they are. You may need to tweak the mayo to potato ratio. It is well worth the try. This seems like a pretty basic recipe, but don't pass it up. This recipe is my most requested picnic food. People love it!

5 lbs russet or BAKING potatoes, boiled whole in jackets, cooled
1 large jar garlic dill pickles (I use Claussen's)
1 large onion, diced finely
3-4 ribs celery, diced finely
1/2 cup shredded carrots
6 hard boiled eggs, diced finely
3 cups mayo
2 TBS mustard
salt and pepper

Remove skins from baking potatoes and dice into large bowl. As you dice the potatoes, splash them with the pickle juice to keep them from browning. Toss the potatoes as you dice. Keep splashing them with pickle juice. Use about 1/4- 1/3 cup.

Put mayo in a bowl ( I use a large wide mouthed ball jar and shake). Add 1/3 cup pickle juice and mustard. This is just a guesstimate. You might need more pickle juice. Mix or shake well. It should be the consistency of thick cream.
Add mayo to potatoes and coat.Don't be stingy with the mayo. If it doesn't coat it and some to spare~ make more. Add onions, celery and eggs and mix. Salt and pepper to taste.
This is better if made the day in advance for all the flavors to marry. When you make this invite me over!

Printable Recipe

Sunday: Smoker Day
Bobby's BBQ Smoked Ribs
Black Bean Salad
Roasted Asparagus On The Grill

Recipe: Black Bean Salad
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 can white shoepeg corn (drained)
1 red bell pepper, chopped

3 TBS canola oil
1 TBS balsamic vinegar
3 TBS freshly squeezed orange juice
1 TBS sugar
14 tsp ground cumin
1 clove garlic, pressed
salt and pepper

Put all dressing ingredients into a jar and shake vigorously. Let sit for 1 hour for all flavors to marry.
Put beans, corn and pepper into a bowl. Pour dressing over the ingredients. Mix thoroughly. Best if made ahead and let to sit so flavors can develop.

Printable Recipe