Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Easy Hamburger Recipe Cheeseburger Pie

Although most of the cattle the boy and I raise are for breeding purposes we also fatten a group of steers each year for ourselves and family. We also sell some locally. It is so nice to be able to go to our freezer and pull out meat for supper. However, cattle produce a lot more hamburger than steaks so by the end of the year we are trying to get creative with recipes that contain hamburger.

I recently found a recipe for Cheeseburger Pie from Skinny Mom with ground turkey and thought that I could easily substitute ground beef. Hamburger is fairly inexpensive and is packed full of protein, zinc and iron. 

Cheeseburger Pie


1 lb. ground hamburger (I use 80/20 but you can use leaner)
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 package reduced-fat crescent rolls
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1 egg
1/4 tsp pepper
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tomatoes, sliced

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brown hamburger, onion and garlic in frying pan on medium heat. 
2. Drain meat of fat/grease (you won't have much, especially if you use leaner ground beef)
3. Spray 9x9 inch glass pan with nonstick cooking spray. Take crescent rolls and place them in the pan like a puzzle covering the bottom on the pan and as much of the sides as you can. Pinch all the seams together. 
4. Place the pan with just the dough in the oven and bake for 8 minutes.
5. In a small bowl mix cottage cheese and egg
6. Once the dough has cooked for 8 minutes spoon the meat mixture into the pan. Pour the cottage cheese mixture over meat. Top with shredded cheese. 
7. Place tomato slices on top
8. Bake for an additional 27-34 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

The recipe makes 8 servings. 

The Boy and I decided that this would be really good with a can of green chili mixed into the hamburger. 

Recently, I also signed up for My Fitness Pal. According to their calculations this recipe has 211 calories per serving. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Baked Avocados

The Boy has been in Florida this week. He had the opportunity to go to one of the Dayton races with his mom and dad, so I pretty much gave him no option other than going. He was worried about leaving the cows with another group of them so close to calving. However, I promised him I could handle it. Winter has been long and he deserved a little break and I make a pretty good farm girl.

When the Boy is gone it means I get to eat what I want. While searching on Pinterest I recently came across a Baked Avocado recipe, and it looked amazing. However, of course when I followed the link through there was no recipe just some ingredients. I figure what the heck, I'm not that bad of a cook, I can figure this out. So here is my recipe.

The Baked Avocado

1 ripe avocado (you definitely want them softer than harder
1 tomato
1/4 cup Italian or Panko bread crumbs
1/4 - 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1 basil leave
1 lemon
salt and pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degree F
2. Cut the avocado in half and remove the pit. Place on a lined baking pan.
3. Chop half of the tomato, and all of the basil leave and combine ingredients. Fill the hollow of the avocado with the mixture.
4. Sprinkle cheese over the face of the avocado, then bread crumbs, then cheese then bread crumbs. Remember the cheese will melt down quite a bit so more is better than less. (Isn't more cheese alway better anyways).
5. Squeeze a little lemon juice over your masterpiece, and sprinkle a little salt and pepper.
6. Bake for 6 minutes. Remember you want to get the cheese melted, the bread crumbs a little toasty and the avocado warm.

They'll look something like this before you bake. 
These baked avocado were delicious. The combination of the fresh basil and lemon were amazing too. In addition to this being a really quick meal to make avocados have lots of health benefits. They have the highest amount of protein out of all fruits (yes, they are a fruit.) They also contain nearly 20 essential nutrients including fiber, potassium, Vitamin E, B-vitamine and folic acid.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Beauty Swap: Jan/Feb Beauty Swap Link Up

It is time for another Beauty Swap Link Up! I am proud to say that we had more than 50 ladies sign up for the swap. I was very glad to have Miss Courtney Nolz of Cowgirl Crush helping me out. Part one of the Beauty Swap was to send a box full of goodies to your partner and part two is to review your box.

I was very lucky to be signed up with Ashley Kennedy of Michigan. Her family has a dairy farm and she also has a great blog, Dairy Innovation. I love this recent post of her's on their bathroom remodel.

Ashley and I talked about how I have been wanting to try more masks and she sent a great one in my box.

Ashley is a big Ulta (similar to Sephora) shopper and sent me a whole box of goodies from there. I am loving this Deep Down Detox Mask. I have been using it once a week and my skin definitely feels firmer. It also smells great, which it seems like this isn't always the case with masks. 

The other product that is really fun is the Lorac 3D Liquid Lustre Shimmering Top Coat. It has been hard to take a picture to show the effect of this, but one little drop on my finger and then a dab on my eye creates this really cool metallic shimmer effect to any eyeshadow. You can also go over your eyeliner with this top coat to give more of a shimmer effect. You only need a little so I have a feeling this bottle is going to last me a long time. 

I also had another beauty box arrive from Mary Kay lady KC Kinder. KC sent me a great Mary Kay lip gloss to try. I usually don't wear lip gloss to often because I find it doesn't last as long as lipstick. However, this stuff last and it moisturizing which is perfect for these winter months. I'm a really bad lip biter so my lips are usually really chapped. KC is going to give away one Mary Kay lip gloss to one of the Crystal Cattle readers. All you have to do is link up your Beauty Swap blog post and/or leave a comment below with what Mary Kay lip gloss color you would choose. And be sure to visit KC's Mary Kay page if you are needing any new products. I will draw for a winner on Feb. 24, 2014. (Congrats to Cow Camp Craziness you are the Mary Kay Lip Gloss winner!)

Now for the question everyone is asking... when are you having the next swap. Keep an eye on the blog for an announcement the end of March. 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Staying Goodbye to our Cows

For those that have been following my blog, Instagram or Crystal Cattle Facebook page know that this past week it was the time to sell Parker the Hereford bull and our Hereford heifer Honey Love. No offense to Honey Love, but Parker has always been the favorite. We were there when he was born and have watched him grow into a 1,400-plus pound bull ready to go breed so cows.

Parker and Honey Love were sold in an auction on Thursday, called the Iowa Beef Expo, and we are really excited about their new owners. Parker is going to Arkansas to another family that has Hereford cattle. They are so excited to get him, and I can tell that he is going to be a great new farm. Before the Arkansas family receives Parker the Boy first took him to what we call a stud. Here they will collect semen and freeze it so we can artificially inseminate (A.I.) some cows this spring. This is just one of the technologies we use on our farm. Even though Parker will be in Arkansas we will still have some of his baby's on our farm in Spring 2015.

Parker and Honey Love waiting for the sale to start. 

Our heifer Honey Love sold to North Carolina. She is going to a family that has kids and will likely be shown. I think she is going to become someone's favorite very quickly. Honey Love gets to stay at our house for a bit longer until the family makes it to Iowa to pick her up.

Honey Love shares her name with one of my favorite MAC lipsticks

One of the reasons why I love our cattle and agriculture so much is because we have the opportunity to make friends with people from all over the country. When you are as passionate as we are about our cows it forms a strong bond.

Now on another completely different note it is time share your Beauty Swap posts if you participated. I will have a post up on Tuesday and you can link you posts to it throughout the week. There will even be a little giveaway going on.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Turquoise Thursday: Happy Valentine's Day

Turquoise Thursday may be a day late but some of you make have a date tonight or this weekend. The Boy and I celebrated last weekend as this weekend I am at a cattle show for work while he is at home taking care of our own cows. That's how you have to roll when you farm or raise livestock. Just because there is a date on a calendar doesn't mean things will go accordingly.

I hope you all have a wonderful Valentine's Day. Whether or not you have a boyfriend or husband in your life there are still lots of people to remind them of how much you love them!

Turquoise Thursday: Happy Valentine's Day

Click on the photo to find out where each of the items are from. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Turquoise Thursday: Act Like A Lady

Is anyone itching for spring. I have been seeing the hashtag #onedayclosertospring popping up lots of places. I don't think all the spring fashions popping up are helping either. Recently, I noticed this beautiful turquoise blazer at Banana Republic. Here is a little confession - I love suit jackets and blazer. I own more than are necessary, however it is sure nice to have them around for that big meeting or fancy night out.

Here's a little tip if you love Banana Republic: Never pay full price for anything. I guarantee that if you just weight a day there will be anywhere from a 20-50% off sale online. I will often try stuff on in the store and then wait and purchase online. 

Now for the jewelry. Thanks to Instagram I have discovered t + j designs and their stuff rocks. They have tons of turquoise and mint colored jewelry this spring. 

This is another one of their mint necklaces from the spring t + j designs spring lines. If you visit the t + J website make sure you sign up for their email list as you will get a 20% off coupon. 

And with images like this on the t + j Designs Facebook page how can you go wrong!

(I did not receive any compensation for this post, I just really like these items!)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Valentine's Lucky Charms Chex Mix

I am not a huge over the top Valentine's Day person. However, I do find it fun to remind others both friends, family and significant others how much they mean to you. Since the Boy and I began dating we have spent either in a barn or at the Iowa Beef Expo (an auction where we sell cattle each year). The first year we were dating I got roses in the barn and last year I got brand new fitting mats (foam mats that you stand on when grooming cattle. They are a knee, feet, back lifesaver). If you have a meat lover in your house or find humor in cookies that say "Let's Pork" you might like this post from last year. 

I love making treats for Valentine's Day and this year I whipped up a new recipe. 

Valentine's Lucky Charms Chex Mix


5 cups Lucky Charms cereal (with marshmallows removed)
5 cups Chex Mix
2 bags of melting white chocolate
Valentine's themed sprinkles (one bottle will be more than enough)
1 1/2 cups of Lucky Charms marshmallows (pretty much all the marshmallows in the box. 

1. Begin by combining Lucky Charms and Chex Mix in a bowl and then spread onto a cookie sheet covered with wax paper or parchment paper
2. Melt you chocolate. The easiest way I find to melt chocolate is to pour it into a large Ziploc bag. Then microwave in 30 second intervals in the microwave, massaging the chocolate in-between cycles. 
3. Pour melted chocolate over cereal mixture. Ensure all the cereal is coated. 
4. Cover cereal chocolate mixture with sprinkles. I like to use the tiny little balls because the sink down beyond the top layer. Let this mixture set until hardened. You can speed up the process by putting it in the fridge. 

5. Break up mixture in bowl and add Lucky Charm marshmallows. 
6. Quickly give away to all your family and friends before you consume it all yourself! 

I hope you all have a Happy Valentine's Day! 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Chevy Hereford Bull Iowa Style

Another Super Bowl is over. In my opinion it is a good thing that there were some good commercials because it was all a little underwhelming. I will have to say that one of my favorite commercials was the Chevy Super Bowl Commercial "Romance."

The Boy found out that the bull in the video goes back to Star Lake (his dad and grandpa's ranch that was sold in 2012) bloodlines. Although, it was neat to see a Hereford bull in the ad since that is what the Boy and I raise, we like to think that we have our own superstar Hereford bull.

Parker is our Hereford bull that we will be selling in the Iowa Beef Expo in February. He will be bought by another cattlemen and turned out with a pasture full of ladies this spring for a little "romance." This weekend we spent primping, washing and clipping Parker for his video debut.

I am definitely going to miss Parker. He is kind of like my big baby, but I can't wait to see what kind of calves he'll produce. His mom, Teardrop, has another bull calf inside of her, and she will be calving this spring. Who knows if she'll be mother to another superstar. 
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