Come and get it!

I have to admit, when I cook dinner and call to Josh, “DINNER’S READY,” I get totally deflated if he’s not there within a few minutes to enjoy it. Not that I’m cooking Food Network meals every night, or even cooking every night, but if anyone takes the time to make a meal – any meal – it’s only right that it be appreciated in its finest form, fresh and warm. Right? Otherwise it’s like a ribbon cutting with no attendees. Maybe it’s not that big of a deal, but I’m hooked on the idea of a dinner bell for our home to help signal the call to gather.

“Dinner Bell” by Stevan Dohanos, 1944

From the sound of it, you might think we live on a ranch and can’t hear each other hollering about supper. Nope. But we do live in a ranch house, so that’s close enough. I remember a cute little hand-held bell at our house growing up, but I’m leaning toward one of these wall-mounted ringers for some gravitas. Come and get it!!!

  1. Elegant Dinner Bell by U.S. Bells, $85
  2. Cast Iron White Rooster Dinner Bell by Guales Woodcrafts, $10.50
  3. Silver Dinner Bell by Red Sky Trader, $30.95
  4. Lab Dinner Bell by, (Cute for my dog-loving friends!) $69.99
  5. Vintage Black and White Dinner Bell from Good Vintage, $24.50
  6. Tractor Cast Iron Dinner Bell by The Shabby Shak, $35.99




Serve: Holy Mole

If you like flavor-packed meals and don’t mind a little kick, add Holy Mole to your list of slow cooker recipes. This one is a real husband-pleaser – I think Josh would eat this every day if I took the time to make it.

Adapted from one of my favorite recipes in the Crock Pot Slow Cooker Bible, “Fall-Apart Pork Roast with Mole,” Holy Mole is a little simpler and less time-consuming. This recipe is great for a Sunday night, after which leftover sauce is a tasty addition to other meals in the next day or two.

Holy Mole How-to:
Serves 4 | Cook time: ~3 hours

2/3 cup whole almonds
2/3 cup raisins
3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 small chopped onion
2 teaspoons chopped garlic (from a jar is just dandy)
~3 pounds of skinless boneless chicken breasts (4 large breasts)
1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 slices of any bread, cubed
3/4 cup chicken broth
3 ounces dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa), chopped
3 peppers in adobo sauce, chopped (comes in a little can)
1 teaspoon salt

In a skillet, toast almonds over medium heat for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add raisins, and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Place half of this almond-raisin mix in your blender, and set the rest aside for garnish.

Next, add 1 tablespoon of oil to same skillet, along with chopped onion and garlic. Cook and stir about 2 minutes until softened, then add this to your blender as well. Adding to blender, drop in tomatoes (with juice), bread bits, broth, chocolate, peppers and salt, then puree the entire mixture until smooth.

Place chicken breasts in slow cooker, and poor entire blender mixture over meat. Cover and cook on high for approximately 3 hours. Remove chicken. Whisk sauce until smooth. Serve chicken over rice, spooning sauce over meat and garnishing with remaining almond-raisin mixture. Enjoy!