This New Year’s Eve we celebrated with our kids with fireworks and a movie. Then we put the kids to bed and had a babysitter watch them while we headed to a friend’s for food and games. The fact that we could actually get a sitter on New Year’s Eve is mind blowing. For those of you who have kids, you know what an impossible task that is. Which is why for the last 7 years we’ve watched the ball drop from the comfort of our couch. I don’t mind that at all either, but it was nice to have a change of pace.

I know a lot of people are anti-resolutions but I think there’s nothing wrong with setting your compass North to things that are better.

My resolution this year is to BE ON TIME.

With four kids there are a lot of ‘X’ factors that can happen between the time you decide to go out the door and actually get there. Diaper change, lost shoe, snacks, missing glove, etc.

But all of those aren’t good excuses. If you give yourself enough time it doesn’t matter what happens. My goal is to add ten minutes more prep to however long I think it will take us to get out the door. BTW – I already muffed this one the second day of the year but have recommitted to it again.

What are your resolutions…if you’re sharing?

bacon-wrapped-water-chestnutsThis recipe was sent to me by a reader Jamie and I’m so glad she did. The sweet and salty bacon wrapped around the marinated water chestnut is the perfect combo. Some people call this Rumaki.

water-chestnutThe water chestnuts marinate for 4 hours and then are wrapped in bacon.brown-sugarThen it’s rolled in brown sugar…bacon-wrapped-water-chestnuts-plateAnd baked until nice and crispy.water-chestnuts-insideYum.

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Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts make a perfectly crunchy appetizer, with a flavor some might be unfamiliar with.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 Tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic minced or pressed through garlic press
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
  • 2 8 ounce cans water chestnuts, drained well
  • 1 lb center cut bacon
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • toothpicks see note

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl whisk together the soy sauce, vegetable oil, ketchup, vinegar, garlic, and pepper. Add the drained chestnuts and mix to coat. Cover and marinate in fridge at least 4 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 375. Line a jelly roll pan or 9x13 pan with foil or parchment paper and place a metal cooking rack on top or use a broiler pan so that the drippings can fall off.
  3. Cut the bacon slices in half or in thirds, depending on how big the bacon is. Drain water chestnuts from marinade. Roll one water chestnut in a piece of bacon, secure w/ toothpick. Roll in brown sugar. Bake 30-40 minutes or until bacon is crisp. Don't worry if the fat and brown sugar that fall off smoke a little.

Recipe Notes

To prevent toothpicks from burning, soak them in water while the chestnuts are marinating.

Source: from reader Jamie MacFarlane