Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mistakes to Perfection

A few times a month we have Sausage, Beans, and Rice around here.  It's my cheap meal and the kids actually eat it up.  But after a year or so of that even I don't want to look at it again.

Southern Living March issue had a recipe for Sausage and Bean Stew

Alright, now you're talking

Can I just say I've made it 3 times now in the past 3 weeks? 

But there's a confession in there.  The first day I made it I screwed up.  I forgot to add the 3 cups of water to it AND I didn't puree a cup of the beans at the end.

AND GUESS WHAT?  It was perfection

So the next week the inlaws came over and I decided to make the stew correctly

Ok so moral of the story?  Sometimes even when you screw up it's ok

So I decided to see if I could duplicate my mistake and fix it

Bam...We've got a winner

Fixes?  Add 2 lbs of sausage (you can never have enough meat around here)
            Only add 1.5 cups of water instead of 3 (and eye it towards the end to see if you need more)
I omitted the parm rind (I never have those on hand) and rosemary sprig
            and this time I did puree 1 cup of the beans with some liquid

I dream of this again.  It was that good!  

Sausage and Bean Stew


  • 1 pound smoked sausage
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 (48-oz.) container reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups dried great Northern beans
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 3/4 cup chopped carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 10 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Parmesan cheese rind
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • Garnishes: chopped fresh parsley, Parmesan cheese


1. Cut sausage into 2-inch pieces, and halve sausage pieces lengthwise, cutting to but not through other side. Cook half of sausage in 1 Tbsp. hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 2 minutes on each side or until browned. Transfer sausage and drippings to a 7-qt. slow cooker. Repeat with remaining sausage and oil.
2. Add 1 cup broth to skillet, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to loosen browned bits from bottom of skillet. Boil 1 minute or until reduced by half. Stir beans, next 8 ingredients, boiled broth mixture, 3 cups water, and remaining broth into slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH 7 hours or until beans are tender. Discard cheese rind.
3. Stir mixture with rosemary sprig 30 seconds to 1 minute; discard rosemary. Remove 1 cup beans, and process in a blender 1 to 2 minutes or until smooth. Stir pureed bean mixture into slow cooker. (Repeat procedure with 1 more cup beans, if a thicker consistency is desired.) Serve immediately.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Hello....Is It Me You're Looking For?

And now with that title of this post I have Lionel Richie's song stuck in my head.  How about you?


Oh you know......crazy busy without a moment to stop and type my thoughts.  Let along my thoughts that last longer than 30 seconds. 

That's why I love instagram so much.  I can upload my life and tag it with 4 sentences or less and boom
Documented a fun moment in my life with my family.

I've been keeping busy with my Essential Oils too.  (psst we even have a website The Oily Cupboard)

Our team is growing and up to 252 people on The Oily Cupboard!!! 

Kids are growing.....I blinked and here my kids are grown and one of them moving out of the house in a few months.  Sniff....It's ok...I've already told him we are turning his room into a Master Closet when he leaves.  I kid though...or am I?  We have 6 kids and need his room!  Child #4 will be taking his room over this summer so I'm pretty excited!  He can always bunk with #2 when he comes to visit (which won't happen since he's only moving 25 mins away)

Lots has happened at the start of the year.  Sadly my ex husband suddenly passed away in January with a heart aneurism.  Makes you realize that you need to live each day as if it your last and daily tell the ones you love how much they mean to you.  Life is too short
Probably the hardest moment ever for my older 3 children and all I can do is hold on tight to them.  I haven't experience the loss of a parent yet, and trying to say the words to comfort in the beginning has been difficult.  I realized though I was blessed with some AMAZING teens and this is bringing us even closer together (any close and we will have to share clothes hahaha)
I'm grateful he got to see our oldest child graduate from high school.  I'm grateful he got to spend 2 weeks at Christmas with them laughing and joking around.  I'm grateful for a lot of things....

Oldest child Gray is finishing up his Freshman year at UNT and LOVING IT.  I'm glad b/c I love having him so close to home for when he leaves the nest

#2 is still my favorite (wondering if any of my kids read this....first one to notice this statement gets $5)  Jake is my quiet soft soul and the favorite of the younger 3 kids.  He is loved by all ....

#3 My Mini Me is a blossoming flower.....and yes I made her dress up with me and Lillian to go see Cinderella a few weeks ago!  You only live once (and she loved it)

#4 Miss Lily has decided she wants to be called by her full name now ..... Lillian.  So I've informed her Kindergarten teacher.  (who btw needs a medal of awesomeness)  Lillian has thrived this year in Kindergarten.  We had planned on Homeschooling her, but she wanted to go to school this year.  She has done amazing.  It's been so fun watching that child learn to read and become this little Look At Me soul.   She uses up all her GOOD GIRL energy for Mrs Bennett b/c she has never once gotten a color change at school.  Which I find odd b/c that child never sits and I know has some naughty bones in her body.  She also cries really easily and Mrs Bennett must take pity on it...(or me hahaha)

Reid, well he's still our crazy boy.  He's still into gun and trucks and sticking to my side like glue.
He requested a Zombie cake (Thanks Plants vs Zombies game) and so I of course obliged ....what is it about boys and brains at age 4?

#6 MY SWEET BABY! Cole is a ball of awesomeness  (do I use that word too much?)  He decided to start potty training himself.  Which is fine by me, since out of all 6 kids he is the first to start himself and start at age 2
He is a sponge and soaks knowledge like water.  He knows his alphabet, starting to sound letters, colors, shapes, can count almost to 100, sings songs I have never taught him,  and speaks a little French.  Don't ask....I have no idea where this child has come from but I'm keeping him.

Me?  Still cooking and Oiling as fast as ever.  My 41st Birthday is in a few weeks and I am not sure how that happened.  It seems like yesterday I was 16 still living at home with my mom and dad! 

Enjoy the pictures below...and if you are ever on IG come find me under the name theoilycupboard.  IG is like a little tiny bloggy world over there!!!





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