Potato Pizza

Today I discovered a travesty that had befallen our nation. Namely, not enough people know about Potato Pizza. I was telling my dear friend Rhonda that I was making it for dinner and she said, “Hmmm that sounds weird.”

I admit that it might seem peculiar but, once you go spud, you’ll never say dud.

Ok that was lame.

Anyway, my family has been making Potato Pizza for generations. My mom taught it to me. Her mom taught it to her and so on. Not sure how far back it goes but every time you ask my mom she’ll tell you something different. At this point I think the family lore dates back to Abraham Lincoln.


This is how my mom passed it down to me. Handwritten on a doggie themed recipe card. There wasn’t even any detail on how much of each ingredient to use. I had to figure that out and write it in the margins! How friggin’ awesome is that?

(By the way, my mom has total teacher handwriting don’t you think?)

It easy. It’s yummy. And it’s total comfort food. What’s not to like about bread, hamburger, potatoes and cheese all mixed up together? If that’s wrong then I don’t want to be right.

So, in order to right the wrongs of our society, I have decided to share this ancient family recipe with you (that goes as far back as George Washington).

Bear in mind that I’m not a cook and have never claimed to be one. But if I can make this, so can you. And I’ll even tell you the right amount for each ingredient because I’m nice like that. Nothing but love, people.

Step 1. Throw 1 TBSP of butter in a frying pan and melt it.


Step 2. Peel 2 large potatoes, slice them thinly and throw in with the melted butter.


OK so maybe you should peel and slice the potatoes before you melt the butter. Details, details.

Step 3. Cook the potatoes until tender but not brown. They should turn from opaque to transparent and get kind of shiny.


Note that this step is very important! When my parents were newlyweds, my mom made this for my dad to try and impress him with her mad cooking skills. However, she neglected to cook the potatoes. The resulting pizza was less than stellar.

Step 4. Set aside the potatoes and brown 1 lb. of hamburger, along with some chopped onions, salt and pepper to taste.


Quick aside:  that funny looking tool I’m using to cook the ground beef is the Mix n’Chop from Pampered Chef. I LOVE it! You use it to mix up and chop the beef (hence the name) and it gets it to those nice small crumbles. Perfect. Best $10 I ever spent in the kitchen.

Step 5. Drain the grease and then add the potatoes back in, along with 1 – 16 oz. can of tomato sauce and some parmesan cheese to taste.


Beautiful, ain’t it?

Yes I’m using a different stirring utensil with every step. Why? Because I’ve found that the more dishes I dirty, the better the food tastes. It’s scientifically proven.

Step 6. Color with your daughter while you wait for your husband to return from the grocery store with the remaining ingredients. Oops.



Tap your foot impatiently while you answer his myriad of text messages about various items.

Stir the meat mixture.

Do the dishes you’ve dirtied so far.

Stir the meat mixture.

Turn on Curious George.

Stir the meat mixture.

Shout “hurray!” when you hear the garage door open, then accost your husband.

Step 7. Grease a baking sheet and then roll out 1 Pillsbury refrigerated pizza dough crust on it.



Make note because this is key: do not try and substitute any other pizza crust for this or I won’t be able to guarantee the results! CJ suggested a pre-made Boboli crust and I had to pick my jaw up off the floor. There is no messing with perfection people!

Step 8. Pour meat mixture on to the pizza dough. Spread evenly, leaving room around the edges.


Notice that I did not leave room around the edges and it made things more difficult later. Not impossible, just difficult.

Step 9. Unroll Pillsbury refrigerated pizza dough crust #2 on top of the meat mixture. Pinch the edges together to seal it up (hence the reason for leaving the gap on the sides)


Step 10. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Check it at 30 because you don’t want to overcook and dry out the crust.


Clean up the rest of your mess while it bakes and your husband runs to the bank with your daughter.

Ignore the doorbell when it rings because you’re already in your grubbies and don’t want to frighten anyone by answering the door.

Catch up on a DVRed show and feel good for accomplishing something.

Welcome your family back home.

Ding! Timer went off! Time to take this masterpiece out of the oven!


Isn’t she lovely?

Cut and serve. But when serving, do it like this:

Cut a piece and immediately spread butter on the top crust. It will get all melty and slide around everywhere.



Then cut a slice or two of your favorite cheese and slip it under the top crust, setting her down right on the meaty middle. Let it melt before eating.


Mmmm boy. I tell ya what, this is some good stuff. Trust me on this people. I know food and I love food. CJ was weirded out by it when he first heard tale of the recipe handed down from the pilgrims but he was sold after his first bite.

I don’t make this very often and I have no idea why because it’s so easy. Maybe because I never have pizza crusts on hand. Or I’m lazy. Or fail to plan ahead. Whatever the reason, I should dismiss it and get this back in the regular rotation. It makes a lot and tastes amazing leftover too (which must be true if I’m saying it because I hate leftovers).

And there you have it! Potato Pizza from my family to yours.

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Don’t Call me Late for Dinner

Hello Luvva…

I was reunited with an old flame earlier this week. I had forgotten just how much I loved our time together. It was sweet. It was naughty. It was hot and cold at the same time. I felt slightly guilty about it each time we met, but the guilt was soon washed away by the unbelievable satisfaction it gave me.

I’m talking about my old friend, the Bachelor Sundae.

What, you thought it was something more scandalous? Get your minds out of the gutter people!

The Bachelor Sundae was created many many years ago by one of my ex-boyfriends. It’s about the only positive thing to come out of that relationship. Basically, he was hungry for something sweet and decided to make a dessert out of ingredients he had lying around the house. In his case, being a bachelor, that meant ice cream, Pop Tarts and peanut butter. But oh what a combination!

I used to make these all the time when we were dating, and even for a while afterwards because it’s just so yummy. But then I got on a health kick and stopped buying Pop Tarts and this faded from my memory. For Mother’s Day I bought myself a box of those yummy chocolate toaster pastries and it just so happened we had ice cream too. The light bulb went off over my head and hence my blissful reunion with Mr. Sundae.

Fortunately, by the time I remembered this treat we only had 3 Pop Tarts left so I could only eat this 3 nights in a row. But believe you me, I did just that! And it was AMAZING! I practically needed a cigarette afterwards!

Here’s what ya do.

1) Put a Pop Tart in the toaster and toast.

It can be any kind of Pop Tart – remember, we’re using whatever you have lying around the house. I prefer chocolate ones but anything will do. If you don’t have Pop Tarts, use a cookie or graham cracker or something like that. Don’t toast the cookie though – that would be really messy.

Once it’s done, immediately spread peanut butter on it. You want the Pop Tart to still be warm so that the PB will be all ooey-gooey (yes, that’s a technical term).

Now all you have to do is scoop out your favorite ice cream! Again, I prefer something with chocolate in it but you can use whatever you have or love.

You can stop here if you want or add other garnish. I’ve put hot fudge on it before, chocolate chips, bananas, caramel, whipped cream, and strawberries (not all at the same time, though you could do that too – anything goes!!!).

Ta da! Behold – the Bachelor Sundae! I tell you, it’s to die for. The warm chocolate Pop Tart combined with the gooey PB and cold ice cream is the perfect combo. Warning – this is not for anyone on a diet! There is nothing low fat/low calorie/healthy about it – except that PB is good protein! But if you’re looking for a quick and easy treat, look no further!

My old flame is now once again a thing of the past. It was fun while it lasted. And now I must get back on the straight and narrow, and rendezvous with P90X…who will not be happy about  Mr. Bachelor Sundae.

Be gentle Tony Horton, be gentle.

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Don’t Call me Late for Dinner

Don’t Have it Your Way

Yesterday was a long day. I worked a full 8 hours and then had a board meeting for a professional organization. By the time I left the office, it was about quarter to 7. I hit the road and headed out to pick up Munchkin from my parent’s house (CJ was at volleyball). On the way, I decided to swing by Burger King for a quick dinner. I debated stopping there since I’m trying to be healthy but in the end decided it was better to do fast food now, then wait to eat  until I got home and put Isabella to bed. By then it would be almost 8:00 and I’d surely inhale every.single.thing in the house.

This BK has 2 drive-thru lines. One of them had a car in it already so I went to the other one. Then a third car pulled in behind the first guy. BK finished taking his order, then took the order for the car behind him, even though I was there first! *grumble* Finally they got to me and I ordered a kid’s meal – chicken nuggets, apples and white milk. Figured that was a good choice – smaller portions, cheaper, healthier sides and you get a toy!

I got to the window, gave him my money, got my food and left. As I got to the first stoplight, I reached in the bag and to my surprise found french fries, not apples! I specifically ordered apples because I didn’t want to be tempted by the fries! *GRUMBLE*

Now I was left with a choice – do I turn around and go back to get my apples or just deal with the fries? I was already short on time so I kept going, figuring I could just not eat the fries.

HA HA HA! I just reread that sentence. Have fries at my fingertips and not eat them? I mean, come on, have you met me?  Besides, it’s not like I didn’t try to be good. I ordered the apples and milk. It’s not my fault they screwed up the order. Perhaps this was the universe’s way of saying, “Hey Sarah, give yourself a break…eat some fries…it won’t kill you.”

Why thank you universe – I think I will!

I do have to give myself props. I ate the nuggets first and then had a few,er, some, uh half of the fries. But not all of them. And I drank all my milk. Go me!

Isabella saved the night though. We always play a game during our drive home from grandma and grandpa’s. I give her a word and ask her to sing a song about it. Here is what she came up with last night.

“Dooooog, dog, dog, dooog. DOOOOOOGGGGG, dog, dog, dog, dog, dog, dog. Doggie, dog, dog, doggie, dog. Elmo!”

Didn’t see that ending coming did ya? What can I say, she has a gift.

Then she sang this one:

“Moon, moon, moon, moooooooooon. Moonie, moonie, Muno. Sun, sun, sun!”

Which must be the sequel to last week’s song:

“Moon, moon, moooooon. Moon, moon, sky….BRIGHT sky! Sky, sky, sky, suuuuuuun!!!”

I see a record contract in her future…

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Don’t Call me Late for Dinner!

Lately I’ve been feeling sluggish and tired all the time. I thought it was because I had a cold or something. Then this weekend I realized it was because my eating habits have gone downhill and I’ve slacked on the exercising. Time to get back on track and on the road to feeling better. There’s just one problem – I love food!!

Anyone that knows me knows that I have an obsession with food. It is constantly in the forefront of my mind. And not just any food – tasty, rich, yummy food (vegetables need not apply)!

Most of my life this was not a problem. I had a high metabolism and so didn’t have to worry about it. But the years have caught up with me and my metabolism isn’t what it used to be. Combine that with a 56 lb. weight gain during pregnancy and you have one unhappy, overweight mom with sore breasts and no sleep. Be afraid, be very afraid. So, I worked hard and lost 61 pounds last year and now actually weigh less than I did before pregnancy.

However, my love for food has not gone away and with no motivation to lose weight, my will power and resolve have flown out the window. Lately I’ve pretty much been eating whatever I want or feel like, giving in to whims, temptations and emotional eating. It doesn’t help that a new sugary piece of heaven shows up in our pod at work everyday and I can’t refuse. That would be rude. I haven’t starting gaining too much weight yet (just a pound or 2) but if I don’t curb this now, I’ll end up right back where I started.

Part of the problem is that I don’t like vegetables but do love starches and sweets and generally all things high in fat and calories. Like I said before, I think about food all the time. So while I’m eating breakfast, I’m already wondering what I’ll have for lunch. During lunch my mind wanders to my afternoon snack and then quickly to dinner. If I’m sad, I want chocolate to make it better. If I’m stressed, please hand me some cookies. If I’m happy, help me celebrate by going out for burgers!

See what I mean?

The following are statements that I totally don’t understand:

  • Wow, I was so busy today that I forgot to eat lunch.
  • Hold the cheese please.
  • Could I get extra vegetables with that?
  • I’m not really a ‘sweets’ person.
  • No dessert for me, I’m full.
  • Oh man, these fresh veggies really hit the spot!
  • I’m craving fruit right now.
  • No bread for me, I’ll just wait for my meal.
  • Just a small piece of cake please.
  • No french fries, I’ll take a side salad instead.

I mean, come on. How does one forget to eat? And why on Earth would you want extra vegetables? I read a few healthy living blogs each day and they always showcase their meals, which consist of quinoa and veggies and kale and ground flaxseed and more veggies. Who really eats like that? I admire those women as I wish that would satisfy me but it just doesn’t.

When CJ and I were dating, he wanted to order a pizza with only half the cheese and I almost broke up with him on the spot. I mean, really, there are some things that are non-negotiable. Thank goodness he was cute or his butt would have been kicked to the curb!

So how is one to maintain their weight loss and yet feel satisfied and able to enjoy the food they love?

They say that if you treat yourself with small portions of your favorite foods, you’ll be able to stay on track. The problem for me is sticking with small portions. I’ve tried the “grazing” thing where you eat 6 small meals a day but it didn’t work. Apparently a burger and fries doesn’t count as a small meal.

The only thing I’ve found that works for me is to either be mandated to eat better (like by a doctor or something) or have a specific target/goal in mind (i.e. being able to wear a bikini during our summer vacation). Right now I don’t really have either of those so I need to find something to drive me. I realize that wanting to be healthy should be enough but honestly, it’s just not.

But I will keep trying. My goal? To feel good about my choices every day. One smart choice at a time is all it takes. A fruit or veggie at every meal? I can probably do that. Skipping the chocolate chip cookies in favor of celery? Probably not. I know my limits.

Here’s to a fresh start, and one good choice at a time!

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You Capture: Happy

Starting this week, I’m going to be partaking in a new challenge. As you may or may not know, my college degree is in art, with an emphasis in photography and computer graphics. Being the practical person that I am, I pursued the computer side of my training when I got in the real world because who can make a decent living as a photographer? Well, turns out a lot of people can with hard work and dedication. I guess I wasn’t willing to work that hard.

Anyway, 12 years after college graduation (Lord that makes me sound old) and I’m a technology analyst doing absolutely nothing creative with my days (except for figuring out new ways to write “that’s out of scope”). But I would like to channel my inner photographer again and this challenge will do just that.

ishouldbefoldinglaundry.com came up with this idea and it’s great fun (also you should check out her site because her pics are amazing)! She basically throws out a subject each Thursday and the goal is to take pics during the following week for your interpretation of that subject. Then you post your best pics the following Thursday. Since I’m new to this, I’ll be taking and posting last week’s stuff all in one day (today). However, I’ll give myself the full week to shoot photos for next week.

As I said, it’s been a while since I’ve done any “real” photography so I’ve forgotten a lot (aperture? shutter speed?). I also don’t have a digital SLR (and I refuse to go back to film for stuff like this) so I’ll have to make due with my point and shoot. I think I can still get some good stuff and like they say in the biz “Photoshop is your friend.”

The subject for today is “happy”. That could be interpreted in a number of ways. Here’s how I saw it.

I took this one on Monday and posted it when talking about the haircut I gave her. But I’m reusing it because it totally fits with this theme and not only is she happy here, but it makes me happy to look at it!

I love mornings when Munchkin wakes up before I leave for work. On those days I get to go in and see her smiling face and kiss her little forehead. Today she was playing with some of her stuffed animal friends and reading an Elmo book when I went in there. She got a big smile when I walked in and was proud to show me all the friends in her book.

No explanation needed. Cookies make me happy. Very happy.

Isabella loves to be tickled and we love to hear her laugh! Her squeals of delight can instantly turn the day around for me. Happy to infinity!

Finally, I can’t talk about what makes me happy and not include something related to volleyball. It just so happened that today was Team Trader Thursday so I took this pic at the gym before we started playing. While I wasn’t real happy with how I played tonight, I still have fun every week no matter what because of the girls I play with.

That’s it! Stay tuned for next week’s edition of “You Capture”. The theme is “red”.

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