Recipe–Rebecca on Ree–Ice Cream Cookies, Best Grilled Cheese Ever, Whiskey Meatballs, Rotini and Meatballs


This Whit’s End family loves grilled cheese sandwiches–especially with tomato soup.  Now I knew better than to add anything to my kiddos grilled cheese sandwiches, but I had been looking forward to trying Ree Drummond’s BEST GRILLED CHEESE EVER (pg. 43)

The first step is to roast the green chilies.  I roasted my over my stove because currently I don’t have a working grill.  It is being worked on, and will probably get finished up sometime this fall.

Once the skin is blackened and blistered, you can “steam” off some of the skin by placing the green chilies in a plastic bag or in a bowl covered in seran wrap.   The rest of the skin just has to be peeled off with a knife.  I peel my pepper over the sink, so that I can rinse off the knife between pulls.

Now to assemble the sandwich.  The sauce is made from mixing Dijon mustard with mayonnaise.  The red onions are soaked in vinegar to reduce the heat, the two cheeses are sharp cheddar and provolone, the tomatoes are season fresh, the green chilies are roasted, and the bread is rye.

I was worried about the heat of the green chilies, so I made one sandwich with roasted green chilies and one without.

I prefered the sandwich with the green chilies–just the right amount of heat.

Lunch was light, so I took some of PW’s MALTED MILK CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES out of the freezer.

I love having cookie dough frozen in logs in the freezer.  They cut so easily, and make an easy dessert.  I also like the fact that there is a limited number of cookies, as I can eat chocolate chip cookies by the dozen.

I had a free afternoon, so I decided to make up two meatball recipes, RIGATONI AND MEATBALLS (pg. 126) and WHISKEY-MUSTARD MEATBALLS (pg. 112)  I would be leaving for eight days in June, and I wanted the freezer full of food for the babysitter, so I doubled both recipes.

The recipe calls for minced flat-leaf parsley.  I went to the refrigerator to get my parsley, but it was frozen.  Sigh.  I immediately knew what had happened because this is not the first time this has happened.

Little Man likes to open the refrigerator door and play with the light switch.  He also likes to turn the temperature dial.  My lettuces and other produce were also frozen, but that is life here at My Whit’s End.

Here’s my frozen flat-leaf parsley being chopped.

Here is the fresh, non-frozen basil.   I love the smell of fresh basil!

Here is my Leaning Tower of Rigatoni Sauce.  I decided to get the rigatoni sauce going as it required 30+ minutes of simmering.

Here I paused.  I turned the burner on low and loaded the car with my kiddos and one friend.  Scout was headed to a birthday party for a soccer friend.

I had been to the coach’s house before, so I was sure I could find the place.  His street name was the name of a friend of mine.  I couldn’t remember which friend, but I was sure I would remember it when I saw it.

The trouble was. . .that coach’s house was in a subdivision where all the houses are beautiful, and exactly alike.  I wandered up and down some streets looking for a street name that would jar my memory.  Nothing.  Oh well, I will just call the coach and ask for his address.  Problem.  I forgot my phone.

So here were our options.  Be really late to the party and go get my phone or hope for a miracle.  I stopped and asked a few people if they knew where the coach lived, but his name wasn’t familiar.  We had two clues.  The name of the street was a friend of mine, and it was somewhere near the park as the girls had played in the park before.  We found the park, but the girls said they would only recognize the house from the back.  Finally we saw a soccer goal in the side yard, and knew we were at the right place.  Miracle performed!  I just dropped the soccer friends off and headed home as I had rigatoni sauce on the back burner.

But more importantly than the rigatoni sauce.  I had a little girl in tears.  You see, Eloise, never gets invited to any birthday parties.  Scout and Clement have been on teams for a while, so they get invites, but not Eloise.  Other than a cousin’s birthday party, she hasn’t been invited to any birthday parties.  I let her crash two birthday parties on our block because I felt so sorry for her, but it wasn’t the same as getting an invitation and a party favor bag.  I promised that I would spend some time with her–but first I needed to get the meatballs ready.

While I was gone, we had our friends–missionaries to Colombia stop by.  I didn’t have time to leave a note, but just left the back door unlocked.  They knew to let themselves in.  They were just stopping by to collect their mail, read their emails, and say a quick hello.  It was really great to see them.

The meatball recipes were slightly different, so I made two different batches.  I had to brown all these.  How could I get this done and still spend some time with Eloise?  APRON ON!

With three burners going, I started browning 4 batches of meatballs.  Grease was spattering everywhere, but that was not the point.  The point was to get finished a.s.a.p.

And when the smoke cleared, it was 7:02.  I had 30 minutes before I needed to leave.

I dumped the finished meatballs into the rigatoni sauce and started the Whisky-Mustard sauce.

There wasn’t much time left before I needed to pick up the soccer girls at the birthday party.  I made up some Ice Cream Cookies and headed downstairs.

We ate them while. . .

. . .watching Tow-Mater and Lighting McQueen.

Then we all forked a meatball before heading to the car to pick up the soccer girls.

Supper would happen when we all got home, but we needed something to tide us over.

Not the greatest quality time with my Eloise.  I was feeling guilty.  I was also running late.

I just put Little Man in his car seat without pants, or shoes.  When I arrived at the party, I was invited to stay for a bit.  I looked exactly like I had cooked all day, and my daughter had rigatoni sauce all over her face, and my son was missing his shoes and pants.  I decided to stay for a bit anyway.  We left when Little Man pulled off his wet diaper and handed it to me.

It had been another full day.  Another in-and-out day.  Another too-busy-to-spend-time-with-the-kids day.  And tomorrow we had to wake up early to get to LBG’s baseball tournament 1 1/2 hours away.  At least there was a pot of meatballs to greet us.

We united over the supper table and shared our day.

COMMENTS:  Both recipes are tasty.  They also both freeze well.  We just ate the WHISKEY MUSTARD MEATBALLS that I froze and The Hunni loved them.  Since making meatballs takes some time, I probably will make up a couple dozen, and freeze them on cookie sheets.  When they are completely frozen I transfer them to Ziplock bags.  Then when I need an easy supper, I just take out the number of meatballs we need.  These recipes are a good, staple, family friendly food.  There is just something about a meatball that is more fun to eat than ground beef.

And now for a video clip.  I got the idea of adding this clip from the blog Happiness Stan Lives Here.

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8 Responses to Recipe–Rebecca on Ree–Ice Cream Cookies, Best Grilled Cheese Ever, Whiskey Meatballs, Rotini and Meatballs

  1. Bel McCoy says:

    Rebecca, you are something else…. haven’t figured out yet just what!!! Why don’t you just bake


  2. Aunt MJ says:

    I have just quickly read the post. I laughed and laughed – – -Uncle J. came in at that moment and sat down. As he left the room he said, ” I’ll have to tell Rebecca that whatever it is she’s doing —to keep it coming. It’s nice to hear you laugh.” Hmmmm . . . I guess I’ll have to read your blog when Uncle J. is around. Maybe I could take the computer to the shop while he’s working on his projects and enjoy it there. I do enjoy reading your posts. And, yes, we had kale again tonight. A. MJ


  3. brooke says:

    Oh, I so wish that you lived closer–because Caroline and Eloise seemed to hit it off so well last summer and next week is Caroline’s birthday and we’d just love to send Eloise a birthday party invite. But I suppose it might be worse to get an invitation to a party you absolutely can’t attend than to not get one at all.
    Question for you: Does caffeine cook out of food the way alcohol does? I know that you’ve done the apple turnovers and the dr. pepper pulled pork and that was a worry I had when looking at those two particular recipes.


    • whitsendmom says:

      Good question. I don’t know. Let me ask my brother, he knows things like that.


      • whitsendmom says:

        So far, my limited research says “no”, but everywhere I looked it seemed like a person’s opinion, and that is worth about nothing, so let me research some more.


  4. Lisa Buchanan says:

    Does the high-fructose corn syrup boil out too? 🙂 I’ve developed a phobia of the stuff as I recently heard it has the same effect on our liver as alcohol. This makes me sad because I do love Dr. Pepper and more importantly, that recipe. Surely there’s not enough in that recipe to be REALLY harmful, right?


  5. brooke says:

    Thanks for the answer Rebecca–don’t worry about doing a bunch of research : ) I think I’ll make the turnovers using 7 UP and I have a good pulled pork recipe I like that used Ginger Ale–I think it’s the soda that does the tenderizing so it doesn’t matter what flavor it is, I suppose. Lisa–there are SO many things that should cook out of food, aren’t there? It just isn’t fair!


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