When life gets busy, cream cheese is your friend.
Life is still crazy. Apartment is still filthy because we spent the weekend upstate. HOWEVER, upstate was fruitful because:
1) I bought a 1940s-50s glass pitcher with a colorful image of a farm on it,
2) I came in to two crates of variously-sized wire-baled glass canning jars (dirty, but free!),
3) Snow tires got taken off the car, summer tires put on, and four steel rims were purchased,
4) I got to go to the Little Falls Co-op, which is only the most awesome place ever for baking supplies. Pretty sure I spent over $30 on dried fruit, chocolate, flour, and some buttermilk powder I’m intrigued to try (no more wasted buttermilk?),
5) I got a haircut. Not super-short, but shorter, and finally,
6) I got to play with adorable puppies all weekend.
Oh! And 7) I got to sleep in. Kinda.
So it was a weekend well-spent. I also picked some rhubarb courtesy of the future in-laws, and made a rhubarb crisp without a recipe that was very good.
So what does this all have to do with cream cheese? Oh yes. Busy.
Today I didn’t bring lunch to work because there’s this place called The Bakery (original name, I know) just down the street from where I work. Today I bought a plain bagel with vegetable cream cheese (contained actual vegetables!) and the most giant square of peach crumble (a peachy pie/crisp thing) I’ve ever seen. Or eaten. But tonight as I was grocery shopping it occurred to me that I could make my own veggie cream cheese. So I bought a bunch of bagels and made a big batch of cream cheese mix. I should be set for the rest of the week. Just wake up, slap some cream cheese mix on a bagel, toss it in a bag with an apple, and I’m out the door!
I used my mom’s cream cheese ball recipe as a base, so I’m including both.
Mom’s Cream Cheese Ball:
2 packages cream cheese (or neufchatel), softened
1 package sliced beef luncheon meat (I use Carl Buddings – don’t get corned beef!)
6 or so green onions, white part and some of the green, thinly sliced
green onion tops, chopped (optional)
Take the stack of lunch meat and slice it into small squares. Toss in a medium-sized bowl with the sliced green onions. Add cream cheese and blend with a spoon until well-mixed. If desired, use two wooden spoons to shape into a ball and pat chopped green onion tops onto outside. Perfect for parties and amazing served with Wheatables or Wheat Thins or similar, slightly-sweet wheat crackers.
Vegetable Cream Cheese:
2 packages (8 oz. each) neufchatel cheese, softened
1 package beef luncheon meat, chopped (optional)
4-6 green onions, white and most of green parts thinly sliced
6-8 radishes, quartered and sliced
1/3 of an English cucumber, chopped into small slices (I cut it into 16ths lengthwise and sliced)
Toss beef (if using) and vegetables to mix. Add cream cheese and stir with wooden spoon until well-blended. Slap on a sliced bagel for a delicious lunch.
Seriously, this is what I will be eating for the rest of the week. Unless I can manage to make carrot salad. In which case I will also eat that. Ditto potato and green bean salad. ‘Cause fresh green beans were on sale. *nom* And now that I have rhubarb, bought strawberries, and have leftover blackberries, I seriously need to make me some clafoutis!
And now? At 9:45 at night? After getting up at 6:30 am to work out? Yeah, the boy and I are going for a walk. And he did dishes tonight. Yeah, we’re that good. 🙂