Thursday, March 31, 2011


Friends and loved ones,

I've been working on something the last couple of days that has me so excited I don't even know how to introduce it to you. It is no mystery that I love to cook (and eat, maybe? Maybe.) I love finding new recipes to make for my family and share with my friends. If any of you know me (bible study, girls?) you know that this is true.

So I've decided to start a food blog called, "Not Without My Mom." This new venture is deeply personal for me. You see, my mom taught me how to cook and despite how much I miss her every day, I somehow feel her in my cooking adventures.

I'll be sharing recipes from my own collection, some from my mom's, some that I find from other food bloggers and giving helpful tips for people still growing in their own cooking adventures (hi Dad!) How fun, right?

So head over to and visit me for a little bit. :)

PS: Don't worry, I'll still blog over here about our crazy family adventures.

All my love,

Friday, March 25, 2011

Something new

I'm working on something exciting.
Something new.
Something fun.
For me, anyways.
You're dying of suspense,
Aren't you?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Real food: Homemade Tortillas

When my children started eating real food (as in when the world became alive to them :), it became pretty important to me that they eat "REAL" food. Not food that could sit out on the counter for 20 years and still be ok to eat. (Is that ever ok to eat?)

Yes, my children still eat boxed crackers sometimes, in fact, Judah eats his weight in Graham Crackers every day. And yes, Malone could eat Easy Mac for every meal of her life, if only I would relent and let her. But as much as I can, I try to make sure the food they (and we) consume is made of REAL ingredients. I know this probably comes easier to me than most, since I particularly enjoy making things from scratch, have the time to do so and more resources than many. I wish (fist of fury in the air) that as a community we would make it easier and cheaper to eat REAL food. I could go on long enough to make Michael Pollan proud, but I won't.

I will, however, share with you my latest conquest in this journey to real, homemade food, HOMEMADE TORTILLAS. UH- mazing! That's all. This is how tortillas were meant to be eaten. I got this recipe from Petit Elefant. Thank you, Allison. Thank you. She has more step by step pictures to help you along if you are a rule follower, like me, and need to make sure your dough looks like hers. Its so easy, and fairly quick. Do it. Make them. Now!

Homemade Flour Tortillas
Courtesy of Petit Elefant
Makes 9-10 tortillas, depending on size

2 C. All-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vegetable oil
3/4 C. hot water

1. Mix together the dry ingredients. Mix well.

2. Add oil to the water. Mix together well...ha ha

3. Add water mixture to dry ingredients one teaspoon at a time. Mix, mix, mix. Until a dough forms.

4. On a very well floured surface, knead the dough until smooth

5. Cut and roll into 9-10 small balls

6. Cover with a damp/wet kitchen towel for 20 minutes. Knead little balls and cover again for 10 minutes.

7. Roll out as thin as you can (I like them not too
thin because then they got a bit crispy. I like
them a little thicker and soft)

8. Cook in a greased (BUTTER!) pan until tortilla bubbles, turn over and cook until golden brown.

9. EAT!

I made some for Buffalo Chicken Tacos. Divine. But then I also made a couple extra for dessert, which meant I sprinkled them with cinnamon and sugar. Ahhhh.

Recipe: Mexican Lasagna

Neither Cameron nor I care a ton for traditional lasagna, so this Mexican version is right up our alley. And since we're in New Mexico, I thought I'd share with you with wonderful readers (Hi dad! Hi Laura!) Hope you enjoy!

Mexican Lasagna- thought up in the recesses of my mind...

3 cooked Chicken breast, shredded
Corn chips
1 c. Sour Cream
1 can Green Enchilada Sauce
Half an onion, sliced
1 Yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 c. Cilantro
2 small cans of Green Chilies, chopped
1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
2 c. Cheddar cheese (or whatever kind)

1. Preheat the oven to 375, & grease a 9x13” baking dish

2. Cook onion and peppers until just softened. Take off heat and throw in Cilantro

3. In a bowl, mix sour cream and Enchilada sauce until combined

4. Start building the lasagna: chips, veggies, chicken (then sprinkle with salt, pepper and cumin), sour cream sauce, chilies, beans, cheese, and repeat.

5. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until its bubbling and the cheese has slightly browned.

** A couple thoughts:

- This is such a forgiving, easy recipe. You can add whatever vegetables you like. Some that I have added in the past includes corn, zucchini, tomatoes, leeks, asparagus.

- Also, you can make your own corn chips if you like by baking some cut up tortillas (with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, red pepper if you like a little heat) 375, until golden.

- If you're from New Mexico you do not have to used canned anything, but rather fresh, amazing chilies and green enchilada sauce. Anyone from New Mexico: Where can I find this? I've heard rumors.

Now, go sit on the porch with a nice cold, Mexican coke (in the glass bottle) or Negro Modelo in hand. Enjoy.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Where in the World are the Schaefers?

Here's some clues:

1. Its warm

2. Its dry and desert-y (we're bathing in lotion....ok, not really, but maybe we should)

3. Close to another country

4. Cameron is in training. Again.

5. We've travelled through 7 states.

6. We've survived 3 kids ear infections (out of 4 ears) and I'm pretty sure 2 sinus infections too. So this is not a clue to anything, but I just wanted to let you know an overarching theme to our road trip.

7. This state has THE BEST green chili burgers EVER.

Where are we?

Why, yes. We are in New Mexico!