DIY Magnetic Spice Containers

After we finished getting settled in our new home, one of projects on the top of my list was a more efficient way to store and access spices. We basically had one cabinet PACKED with spices and baking ingredients. It was impossible to find you were looking for without having to pull them all out of the shelf.

Looking around Pinterest, I found tons of ideas for spice containers and ways to store them. My favorite version was the magnetic containers on the wall. Most of the versions I found, though, were pretty pricey. Instead, I decided to create my own DIY version.

I was at a craft store and found a sale on small containers that looked perfect for a magnetic spice tins. I bought some scrapbooking stickers and a role of magnetic tape to complete the look.

This spice DIY project was super easy to make, pretty cheap since I found the containers on sale, and created exactly what I was looking for. I placed the spice containers on the fridge and now we have easy access to all our favorite spices!

Magnetic Spice Container materials:
  • Small tins 
  • Magnetic tape
  • Stickers
  • Pen
  • Spices
Magnetic Spice Container instructions:
  • Thoroughly wash and dry spice containers
  • Adhere two strips of magnetic tape to the back of the containers
  • Write spice name on the stickers
  • Add a sticker to the front of the container
  • Fill containers with spices

Orange Chicken

You may have heard this once or twice...but I'm a huge fan of the Pioneer Woman. I love watching her show and taste testing her recipes. Her site is one of my go to destinations for new recipes; they are consistently delicious and packed with flavor. A year ago, I was lucky enough to go to a live cooking demonstration and meet her at a book signing! 

Ever since she announced her new cookbook was coming out, I've been anticipating its arrival! The cookbook came out in October and I eagerly flipped through the pages and started marking all the recipes I couldn't wait to try. Among my favorites was an orange chicken recipe. We love Chinese food, but have never attempted an orange chicken before. 

This recipe also gave us a chance to try out our small deep fryer that we recently purchased. We do not fry very often, but this makes it easier. Also, since we have a glass flat top stove and didn't want to use our extremely heavy cast iron dutch oven for frying the chicken.

This dish is quite tasty! The sauce is full of citrus flavor, a hint of sweetness, and a slight kick of heat from the red pepper. I love the addition of orange zest along with the juice, it gave it a freshness and enhanced the flavor.

Orange Chicken ingredients:
  • Peanut oil
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2 tbs cornstarch
  • 2 - 2 1/2 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 tbs brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tbs rice vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
  • Dash of Kosher salt
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tbs of additional cornstarch for slurry
  • 1/4 cup water for slurry
  • 2 green onions
Orange Chicken instructions:
  • Heat oil at medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed pot (or in a deep fryer) until it registers 350F
  • Cut chicken breasts into bite sized pieces
  • Whisk together egg whites and 2 tbs of corn starch until foamy
  • Place chicken in egg mixture and sit for 5-10 minutes
  • Whisk together orange juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, rice vinegar, sesame oil, salt, red pepper flakes, garlic, ginger, and orange zest in a skillet
  • Create a slurry with the 1 tbs of cornstarch and 1/4 cup water; place to the side
  • Heat orange juice mixture to a boil over medium-high heat
  • Add slurry mixture and combined
  • Cook sauce for 1 minute, or until thick (add water if it gets too thick)
  • Cook chicken in batches in the oil (don't clump together) for 2-2 1/2 minutes until light golden brown and cooked through
  • Remove chicken from oil and let drain on a paper towel
  • Cook the chicken for a second time for 1 minute per batch
  • Remove them and drain on another paper towel
  • Warm the sauce back up and add some water if too thick
  • Place chicken in sauce and toss it
  • Grate additional orange zest
  • Serve with rice and some green onions for garnish

Mummy Meatballs

Halloween is not my favorite holiday, but I've gotten into a bit more this year. We finally live in a neighborhood where we should get trick-or-treaters! We are also participating in our church's trunk or treat with our small group. Our group is doing a zoo themed trunk and all dressing up like animals and zookeepers. Here is my $3 giraffe costume:

Even our cat is getting into Halloween...sort of. I'm not sure Elphie is too thrilled to be dressing up as Elsa from Frozen.

This week we had a small group meeting and I decided to get festive with Halloween snacks. I made my favorite pumpkin treats and some mummy meatballs! 

I have seen the meatballs all over Pinterest and Facebook lately. I added my own twist for the eyes, though. There were so many versions of the eyes out there from a simple dot of marinara sauce, to a more complex cheese and olive creation. I decided to use mozzarella cheese for the eyes with a small dab of marinara sauce.

The mummy meatballs are actually much simpler to make than it looks! The meatballs were a hit with our group and would be a perfect addition to any Halloween get together or party.

Mummy Meatball ingredients:
  • 20 frozen cooked Italian meatballs
  • 1 roll of crescent dough
  • 1 slice of mozzarella cheese
  • Marinara sauce
Mummy Meatball instructions:
  • Roll out crescent dough and lightly press in where the perforations are
  • Cut the dough horizontally and vertically in the middle to create 4 rectangles
  • Cut each rectangle horizontally into 10 strips
  • Wrap 2 strips around each meatball to look like bandages
  • Make sure there is space on the front to add eyes
  • Bake per directions on the meatball package, around 15 minutes
  • While baking, punch out small circles of mozzarella cheese using a small straw
  • Let meatballs cool a few mins once taking them out of the oven
  • Pour some marinara sauce in a resealable bag and snip off a small bit of the corner
  • Pipe a dab of marinara sauce and place the mozzarella "eyes" on the meatballs
  • Pipe another dab of marinara sauce on each eye
  • Serve with warm marinara sauce