Sunday, August 14, 2022

Green Tomato Pie

 This is surprisingly a great tasting pie.


4 cups sliced green tomatoes

boiling water

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons butter

2 9 inch piecrusts


Preheat oven to 425.  In a medium bowl, cover the tomatoes with boiling water.  Set aside for 10 minutes.  Drain on paper towels.  

In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  

Place one pie crust in the bottom of a 9 inch pie plate.  Spread 1/2 cup of the sugar mixture in the pie shell.  Arrange the well drained tomato slices on top.  Sprinkle with the lemon juice.  Top with remaining sugar mixture.  Dot with butter.  Cover with the remaining pie crust.  Make a few slits in the crust.

Bake for 15 minutes and then lower the oven temperature to 375.  Bake for another 30 minutes.

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Sweet Potato Biscuits

 You are going to love these!


5 cups all purpose flour

1 cup light brown sugar

2 tablespoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 cup Crisco

2 cups cooked and cooled mashed sweet potatoes

1 cup whipping cream

1/2 cup chopped nuts


Preheat oven to 350.

Stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ginger and allspice in a large mixing bowl.

With a pastry cutter, cut in the shortening until crumbly.  Add the sweet potatoes and mix well with a wooden spoon.  Add the cream and nuts and stir until moistened.

Turn out the dough onto a floured surface.  Roll the dough out to 1 1/2 inch thickness.  With a 2 inch diameter biscuit cutter, cut out the biscuits and place onto an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake until nicely browned, 25 to 30 minutes.  Serve hot.

Makes 24 biscuits.


Sunday, August 7, 2022

Blackberry-Raspberry Skillet Cobbler

Dora Charles is a well known Southern cook and cookbook author.  I have 2 or 3 of her cookbooks.  Aside from the wonderful recipes, it is just fun to read her narrative.  This one, according to Dora, came about by accident.  The original recipe calls for just blackberries.  She started gathering the ingredients once to make it and discovered she didn't have enough blackberries, but she did have raspberries.  She combined the two and came up with this jewel.

It is best prepared in a cast iron skillet.

Filling

1 stick butter

3 cups blackberries

1 cup raspberries

Grated zest of 1 lemon mixed with 2 tablespoons sugar


Batter

1 cup self-rising flour

3/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup milk


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Melt the butter in a 9 or 10 inch cast iron skillet.  Remove from the heat.

Mix the berries with the lemony sugar and spread them out in the bottom of the skillet.  Let them soften for a couple of minutes in the oven, adding a little water if they seem dry.

Make the batter:  Whisk together the flour, sugar baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.  Stir in the milk.  The batter will be thick.

Cover the fruit with the batter.  It's okay if it doesn't entirely cover the fruit.  Bake the cobbler until the fruit is bubbling up the edges, about 20 minutes.

Let cool a good half hour before eating. 

Friday, August 5, 2022

A Blue Ribbon pasta salad!

I love the blend of flavors in this delicious salad.


1 pound fusilli pasta, cooked

1 6 oz jar sun-dried tomatoes, drained (reserve the oil), chopped

1 cup fresh mozzarella balls

3 cups baby spinach or kale

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon honey

salt and pepper to taste

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 cup oil from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil


In a large bowl, toss together the cooked pasta, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and spinach.

In a bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the vinegar, honey, salt and pepper, and garlic.  Stream in the sun-dried tomato oil and the olive oil while whisking, until the dressing is somewhat emulsified.  Pour over the pasta salad and toss well.  This lasts well in the fridge for 1 to 2 days.

Thursday, August 4, 2022

Muffins with cranberries, orange, and walnuts

One of my favorite things to do is thumb through one of my cookbooks from my massive (as in HUGE!) collection and find new recipes to try.

No one can accuse me of getting bored with my cooking!


1 cup granulated sugar

zest of one orange

3 cups all purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter

3 large eggs

3/4 cups milk

juice of one orange

1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries

1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts

turbinado (also called raw sugar) sugar, for sprinkling


Preheat the oven to 375.  Line muffin tins with paper liners.

In a large bowl, mix together the sugar and orange zest.  Let this sit a few minutes to allow the orange flavor to combine with the sugar.  Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk to combine. 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs, milk, and orange juice.  Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir just to combine.  Don't overmix.  Fold in the cranberries and walnuts.

Fill the muffin tin liners to the top.  Sprinkle the turbinado sugar over each muffin.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a light golden brown.  Let cool slightly in the muffin pan, then transfer to a raised wire rack to finish cooling.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

Lemon-Garlic Potato Salad

Here is a pleasant change from the traditional potato salad.  A real crowd pleaser. 


1 1/2 lb. Yukon gold potatoes

1 1/2 lb. sweet potatoes

2/3 cup olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon zest

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon ground pepper

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil


Cook potatoes in boiling water to cover 30 minutes or until tender.  Drain and cool for 20 minutes

Whisk together olive oil and next 6 ingredients; let stand 30 minutes.

Peel potatoes, and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices.  Arrange potatoes in rows in a shallow 2 qt baking dish, alternating Yukon gold and sweet potatoes.  Pour olive oil mixture over potatoes; sprinkle with pecans and basil.

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Breakfast Tacos

There was a time if you told me I would get excited about breakfast tacos - or anything Mexican, for that matter - I would tell you "buzz off!"

My dislike for Mexican food stems from one or two times having Mexican from a fast food joint!  Over time, I went with friends to decent Mexican restaurants.  Hey, this stuff is good!

My breakfasts range from everything such as oatmeal, eggs,bacon, muffins/briscuits, avocado toast, to pancakes/french toast. . . in other words, I like variety!  Enter breakfast tacos!  I found a recipe I really like.

Here it is!

two eggs with milk:  scramble

1/2 cup chopped tomato

1/2 cup chopped cucumber

1 cup chopped lettuce

2 cooked tortillas

Spicy yogurt sauce:

1 cup yogurt

1 tablespoon lime juice

3 tablespoons hot sauce

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro


You can adjust the amount of ingredients to suit your needs.  This is what I use for two tacos for myself.

This is REALLY good!

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Zucchini-Pineapple Bread

A unique and delicious quick bread.  Makes 2 loaves.


3 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2 cups sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups coarsely grated unpeeled zucchini

1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple, well drained

1 cup chopped dates

1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat the oven to 350.  Grease two loaf pans.  Beat the eggs, oil, sugar, and vanilla together until thickened.

Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt in a large bowl until well combined.  Add the zucchini and toss to separate and coat with flour.

Add the egg mixture and the pineapple to the flour mixture.  Stir until just combined.  Fold in the dates and pecans.

Scrape the butter into the prepared pans and bake for about one hour or until a toothpick inserted near the center of a loaf comes out clean.  Let the bread cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to continue cooling.


Thursday, June 23, 2022

Marinated Vegetable Medley

It's no secret that I look for new ways to incorporate more fruits and vegetables in my diet.  This is one I especially like and I think you will too.  While there are canned vegetables in the list, I prefer, as far as possible to use fresh.


Choose any 5 of the following:

1 can green beans, drained

1 can asparagus, drained

1 can carrots, drained

1 jar artichoke hearts, drained

2 cups fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 cups cherry tomatoes

2 cups sliced fresh summer squash

2 cups sliced cucumbers

2 cups (1 small head) cauliflower florets

2 cups (1 bunch) broccoli florets

2 medium green bell peppers, sliced

1 small red onion, sliced and separated into rings


Marinade:

1 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup white wine vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon dried Italian herb seasoning

2 teaspoons dry mustard

1 teaspoon salt


Combine your choice of vegetables in a large bowl.  Combine the marinade ingredients and pour over the vegetables.  Toss well.  Chill, covered, overnight.  Drain and arrange on a platter for serving.

The nice thing about this recipe is it can be different every time you make it.

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Old-Fashioned Chicken and Dumplings

Few things are more Southern than Chicken and Dumplings.  This recipe comes from one of my Annual Southern Living cookbooks - if you are a serious cook (even if you aren't!), you need these cookbooks. . . Really.  I have a handful of these and use them frequently.  I've never been disappointed.  I think it is the buttermilk in this recipe that makes it stand above the crowd.


1 whole (2 1/2 to 3 lb) whole chicken

2 celery stalks, roughly chopped

2 medium carrots, roughly chopped

2 quarts water

2 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for work surface

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3 tablespoons Crisco

3/4 cup whole buttermilk


Place chicken, celery, and carrots in a Dutch oven; add water and 2 teaspoons of the salt.  Bring to a boil over high; cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer about 1 hour.  Remove chicken from broth and let stand until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes.  Remove and discard skin and bones and cut into bite size pieces.  Bring broth to a boil over high heat, add pepper.

Meanwhile, combine flour, baking soda, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl.  Cut in Crisco with a pastry blender - or use your fingers - until mixture resembles coarse meal.  Add buttermilk, stirring with a fork until dry ingredients are moistened.  Turn dough onto a well-floured surface and knead lightly 4 or 5 times.

Pat dough into 1/2 inch thickness.  Pinch off dough in 1 1/2 inch pieces and drop into boiling broth.  Reduce heat to medium-low, cook, stirring occasionally, until desired consistency, about 8 to 10 minutes.  Stir in chicken.

Garnish servings with chives, if desired.

Thursday, June 2, 2022

Avocado Toast

There are multiple ways to make Avocado Toast and over the years, I have made it several different ways.  Here is my new favorite!


Start with 2 thick slices of your choice of bread.  I prefer a whole wheat, multi-grain variety.  After toasting the bread, brush with olive oil.

Chop or mash a peeled avocado.  Pour hot sauce over it.  Chop 2 or 3 cherry tomatoes.  Combine the avocado, hot sauce, cherry tomatoes, and a sprinkling of feta cheese.

Delicious!

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Buttermilk Pie

Buttermilk Pie is truly Southern!  Try it!

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

6 tablespoons butter, melted

3 large eggs

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg (optional)

A 9 inch unbaked pie shell


Preheat oven to 325.  Beat the sugar, flour, melted butter in a small electric mixer bowl for one minute.

Reduce mixer speed to low and beat in eggs, one at a time.  Continue beating for 30 seconds or until light.  With mixer still at low speed, add the buttermilk, vanilla, and nutmeg.  When thoroughly combined, pour the mixture into the pie shell.

Slide the pie onto a baking sheet and bake on the middle oven rack for about an hour and 10 minutes, or until puffed, nicely browned, and a cake tester inserted halfway between the edge and center comes out clean.

Can be served warm (after cooling on a rack for 30 minutes) or at room temperature.

The filling will fall but this is as it should be.  Cut into small pieces - the pie is rich! 

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Fruit Pizza

I've made several different Fruit Pizza recipes.  They are all colorful and inviting.  I like this one best.  The crust, in my opinion, makes this one stand out among the rest!

Crust

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 cup flour

1/4 cup rolled oats

1/4 cup chopped nuts

Mix all ingredients together and press into bottom and sides of a pie pan.  Bake at 350 about 8 minutes.  Cool.


Topping

1 cup sour cream

1 small container Cool Whip

Selection of colorful fruits (example:  strawberries, blueberries, kiwi fruit, pineapple chunks)


Combine sour cream and Cool Whip.  Spread on cooled crust.  Arrange fruit over this in an eye appealing pattern.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Red Wine Chicken

This one comes from my Steve and Kathy Doocy's The Happy Cookbook.  If you don't have this one, you need to get a copy.  It is full of really great tasting recipes along with a lot of fun to read stories from Steve and Kathy's family.

 6 slices bacon, cut into one inch pieces

6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

one pound button mushrooms, halved

2 large yellow onions, cut into one inch chunks

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved horizontally

salt and pepper

2 large potatoes, peeled and quartered (I used baby potatoes, unpeeled)

1 pound baby carrots

2 cups red wine 

1 teaspoon herbes de Provence

2 cups chicken broth

1/3 cup flour

In a Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium high heat until crispy.  Remove and set aside.

Add the garlic, mushrooms and onions to the pan with the bacon far and saute until they start to brown on the edges, 8 to 10 minutes.  Remove the vegetables to the plate with the bacon.

Sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper on the chicken.  Lay in the pan and cook until nicely browned on both sides, 12 to 15 minutes total.

Return the vegetables and bacon to the pot.  Add the potatoes, carrots, wine, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the herbes de Provence.

In a small bowl, combine the broth and flour and stir until smooth.  Pour the mixture into the pot and stir.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the chicken is done and the sauce is thickening, 30 to 35 minutes.

Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Pear Pecan Bundt Cake

Anyone that follows my blog knows I like bundt cakes. . . one pan, no layers to spread frosting over, just drizzle the glaze when the cake is completely cool!  And my Lodge Manufacturing cast iron bundt cake pan gets a lot of use.

3 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 large eggs at room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 Bosc pears, cut into 1 inch pieces (about 2 cups)

1 cup chopped nuts

Glaze

1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar

3 tablespoons water (or enough to get right consistency)


Preheat oven to 350.  Spray tube pan with Bakers Joy spray.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, the sugar, the baking soda, and the salt, making a well in the center.  Stir in the oil, the eggs, and the vanilla.  Stir in the pears and the pecans.  Spoon the batter into prepared pan.  Bake for 60 to 70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.  Let cake cool in the pan for 20 minutes.  Remove from pan onto a wire rack.

Once cake is completely cool, in a small bowl (I use a pyrex measuring cup because the pouring spout makes it easy to spread the glaze) stir together the sugar and water until smooth.  Drizzle over cake.

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Sweet Potato Bread with Buttermilk Lime Frosting

I make a lot of different quick breads, probably a half dozen or more recipes.  This one is quite unique.  It can be served with or without the frosting. . . but include the frosting!

Salted butter for greasing the pan

1 3/4 cups self rising flour

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/3 cups light brown sugar

1 cup mashed roasted sweet potato

3/4 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs, at room temperature


Frosting

2 1/2 cups sifted powder sugar

2 tablespoons buttermilk

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch of salt

lime zest


Preheat oven to 350.  Grease a loaf pan with butter, set aside. 

Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, baking powder, cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl.  Whisk together brown sugar, sweet potato, oil, and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a separate bowl.  Add eggs, one at a time to brown sugar mixture, whisking to combine after each addition.  Slowly add brown sugar mixture to flour mixture, whisking constantly until well combined.

Transfer batter to prepared loaf pan.  Bake on middle rack in preheated oven until a wooden toothpick comes out clean, about one hour.  Remove bread from oven; cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes.

Prepare the icing:  Whisk together powdered sugar, buttermilk, lime juice, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and pinch of salt in a medium bowl until smooth.

Remove the bread from pan, and cool on wire rack.  Drizzle bread with frosting while the loaf is still warm.  Top with zest.

Soooo good!

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Linguine and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

I love sun-dried tomatoes!  Here is a quick and easy pasta recipe you'll love.

16 oz. package of linguine

7 oz. jar sun dried tomatoes in oil

1/4 cup pine nuts

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

4 oz. package crumbled feta cheese

2 tablespoons thin fresh basil strips


Prepare the linguine according to package directions.

Drain the tomatoes, reserving 2 tablespoons oil.  Cut the tomatoes into thin strips.

Heat pine nuts in a large skillet, over medium-low heat, stirring often, 5 minutes or until toasted and fragrant.  Remove the nuts from skillet.

Increase heat to medium, and saute garlic in 2 tablespoons reserved oil and olive oil in the skillet one minute or until garlic is fragrant.  Stir in tomatoes and remove from heat.

Toss together tomato mixture, hot cooked pasta, feta cheese, and basil in large bowl.  Sprinkle with toasted pine nuts.

Mmmm. . . delicious!

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

A throw-together vegetable stir fry!

I have tons of recipes for anything I want to make and more. . . but sometimes it is fun to just go out on a limb and see what you can come up with.  That's what I did tonight.


I brought home a lot of "stir fry stuff", well that was what I wrote on my shopping list!  I began by heating up my cast iron wok, adding a small amount of oil in it. . . letting that heat up. . . then I added chopped garlic and fresh ginger.  After that cooked for a minute or two, I added broccoli, orange bell pepper strips, baby corn, and mushrooms.  When that had cooked a bit, I added homemade stir fry sauce, stirred it around, then covered the wok and let it simmer a bit.  I served it over brown rice.  It turned out great!  When making stir fry, go easy on the sauce.  It can be overpowering if you add too much.

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Stir Fry Sauce Recipes

I like putting together a stir fry meal.  It is quick, delicious, and nutritious.  I just toss in whatever vegetables I want, sliced fresh ginger, and minced garlic.  I usually serve it over rice, but sometimes I just eat it as it comes out of my wok!  Here are my go to sauce recipes. . . I've never been a fan of bottled sauces.

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup water

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon brown sugar


1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup chicken broth

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 tablespoon garlic, minced

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon rice vinegar


1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons soy sauce

1/4 cup sesame oil

1 tablespoon cornstarch


For all of the above, whisk together the ingredients and use sparingly in a stir fry meal.  Store in the refrigerator in tightly sealed container for several weeks.  I like my Lodge Manufacturing cast iron woks.  I have a 14 inch one and a 9 inch.  The smaller one is great for a nice meal for me.  But if I have company or want left overs, the larger one works fine.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Sweet Potato Casserole

 Sweet Potatoes:

3 medium sweet potatoes, baked and mashed

1 1/4 cups sugar

2 large eggs, beaten

12 tablespoons melted butter, divided

1 cup milk

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Topping:

3/4 cup crushed corn flakes

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1/2 cup brown sugar


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.  In a large bowl, combine the sweet potatoes, sugar, eggs, 6 tablespoons melted butter, milk, nutmeg and cinnamon.  Mix well and pour into the baking dish.  Bake for 20 minutes.

While the sweet potatoes are baking, prepare the topping.  In a small bowl, combine the corn flakes, nuts, brown sugar, and the remaining 6 tablespoons melted butter.  Sprinkle on top of the baked sweet potatoes and bake for an additional 10 minutes.  Serve hot.

Friday, April 22, 2022

Sausage Blossoms

Here's a great appetizer to serve when guests come over.


2 pounds Italian sausage, casings removed

2 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese

2 cups salsa

1 package won ton wrappers

sour cream

chopped green onions


Brown the sausage in a skillet, stirring until crumbly.  Remove from heat and add the cheese and salsa, stirring until the cheese is melted.  Press the won ton wrappers into miniature muffin cups.  Bake at 350 for 10 minutes or until won ton edges begin to brown.  Remove to a serving platter and let stand 5 minutes.  Spoon a small amount of sour cream on top of each sausage blossom and sprinkle with chopped green onions.  Serve immediately.  Makes 24.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Marinated Broccoli

I was going through tote containers in the basement that hadn't been opened in months. . . years?  I ran across an old cookbook from my mother-in-law's Women's Club, circa 1980.  I found quite a few recipes I want to try but this one I remember making, back in the days when I was trying to get my boys to eat more vegetables.


1 cup cider vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon dill seed

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 1/3 cup vegetable oil

With two bunches of broccoli flowerets, cleaned and cut into small pieces, marinate in the marinade recipe above for at least 5 hours.

Monday, April 18, 2022

The Perfect Cookie (cookbook)


America's Test Kitchen, in my opinion, has the best cookbooks.  They put every recipe in their cookbooks through rigorous testing so that you get superior results.  I have several of their cookbooks and love every one of them.  They put a paragraph or two by each recipe telling you why it works.

Their cookie cookbook is really out of this world fantastic!

I admit I have gotten into a rut over the years when it comes to baking cookies.  My old standbys, chocolate chip, peanut butter, and sugar cookies are about the extent of my repertoire and at Christmas I often make the Hershey's Kisses Peanut Butter cookies.

This book has encouraged me to try others that I am sure will become favorites.

There are the Classic Chewy Oatmeal cookies, Lemon Sour Cream cookies, Chewy Chocolate cookies, Cinnamon Swirl cookies, Hazelnut Lemon Curd Thumbprints, and so many more.

Check it out!  You won't be disappointed.

Friday, April 15, 2022

Chinese Spinach

This is a great way to prepare spinach.

1 lb. fresh spinach

2 tablespoons cooking oil

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 cup water chestnuts

2 tablespoons chopped onion


In a large, covered saucepan, simmer spinach with a small amount of water for 3 minutes.  Drain well.  Heat oil, soy sauce, and sugar in a skillet.  Add spinach, water chestnuts, and onion.  Cook and toss until spinach is well coated and heated through, about 2 to 3 minutes. 

Monday, April 11, 2022

Rice Pudding

This is one from "way back."  I dug it up recently to make it and had forgotten just how good it is!

1 1/4 cup sugar

1 1/2 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 eggs beaten

1 cup cooked rice

3/4 cup raisins

butter


Mix together the sugar and milk.  Add vanilla, eggs, and milk.  Mix well.  Add rice and raisins.  Dot with butter.

Bake in a 350 oven for 30 minutes.  Serve warm.

Sunday, April 10, 2022

Grape Salad

 

This is just so good and quick to prepare.  A great summer salad.


1 block of cream cheese soften

1 cup sour cream

1/3 cup sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 lbs green grapes

2 lbs purple grapes

1 cup chopped pecans

3 tbls brown sugar


Mix 1st 4 ingredients until smooth and creamy, fold in grapes. In a separate bowls mix pecans and brown sugar and sprinkle on top.

Thursday, April 7, 2022

Lemon Blueberry Bundt Cake

Bundt cakes are great.  You have one baking pan, rather than with layer cakes, and using a glaze is quicker than frosting 2 or 3 layers!  I like using my Lodge Manufacturing cast iron bundt pan.


1 cup butter

1 3/4 cups sugar

4 eggs

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 3/4 cup flour

1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk

1 cup blueberries

Glaze: 1 cup confectioners' sugar, 1 tablespoon water, few drops lemon juice.  Make sure cake is completely cooled before adding glaze.


Preheat oven to 350.

In large bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy.  Beat in eggs one at a time.  Add lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla.

In separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Beat in flour mixture alternating with buttermilk.  Beat well.

*Put 1/3 of the cake batter into a prepared bundt pan.  Put 1/3 of the blueberries on top.  Repeat from *

Bake at 350 for 50 to 55 minutes.

Note:  I have had good luck using Baker's Joy with flour spray in my pan.  The cake just slides right out.  I like it better than Pam spray.

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Blueberry Chicken Salad

Another one of my old favorites.


2 cups fresh blueberries, plus more for garnish

2 cups cubed, cooked chicken

3/4 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

1/2 cup thinly sliced onion (shallots are a good choice)

1 6 oz. carton lemon yogurt

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon salt

Greens - lettuce, spinach, arugula for plate


Place blueberries, chicken, celery, red pepper, and onion in a large bowl.  Toss to combine.  Stir together yogurt, mayo, and salt.  Drizzle over chicken mixture and toss gently.  Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.  Serve on greens lined platter, garnished with blueberries.  Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Secret:  If I don't have, or can't get lemon yogurt, I use plain Greek yogurt.

Friday, March 11, 2022

Buttermilk Alfredo Pasta with Chicken and Spinach

I really like this one.  Aside from being delicious, it goes together quickly.

8 oz. uncooked rigatoni pasta
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 oz. parmesan cheese, finely shredded - divided
1 5 oz. package fresh baby spinach
4 cups shredded cooked chicken

Cook the pasta according to package directions.  Drain and set aside

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Whisk in flour until smooth.  Cook, whisking constantly for 1 minute.  Slowly whisk in the milk.  Cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is thickened and bubbly, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Whisk buttermilk, salt, pepper, and 1 cup of the cheese into flour mixture, whisking until cheese is melted.  Stir in spinach, 1 cup at a time until wilted before adding more.

Add chicken and pasta, stir until coated and warmed through.  Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Thursday, March 10, 2022

House Brine

This one comes from my Buttermilk & Bourbon cookbook, a wonderful book filled with recipes from a restaurant by the same name.  The chef/owner is quite a personality!  I enjoyed reading it as a book, as much as the recipes. 

With warm weather not too far off, my thoughts are turning to firing up the grill and smoker.  So this particular recipe caught my eye and I am anxious to try it this Spring, Summer, and Fall - prime smoking season!  I have always used a basic brine for chicken going in the smoker, consisting only of water, salt, and brown sugar.  This brine is good for pork or chicken.

3/4 cup salt
3/4 cup honey
4 cups boiling water
1/2 Granny Smith apple, quartered
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1/2 carrot, roughly chopped
1 stalk celery, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
2 fresh sage leaves
2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
2 cups ice

In a large bowl, mix the salt, honey and hot water.  Add the apple, onion, carrot, celery, thyme, sage, and peppercorns.  Add the ice to cool the brine.  Add the meat (pork or chicken) and let it sit, refrigerated for 12 to 24 hours.  Remove from the brine and pat dry before cooking.  Be sure the brine cover the meat entirely while it is in the refrigerator.

Makes 8 cups.

Saturday, March 5, 2022

Fried Eggplant Rounds

I have enough eggplant recipes that I could probably write a cookbook and title it "Eggplant Heaven!"  This one is especially good.

2 medium eggplants

2 eggs

1/2 to 3/4 cup sour cream

1/4 to 1/2 cup flour

salt

cooking oil for frying


Peel and slice the eggplant into 1/2 inch rounds.  Place in a bowl and liberally sprinkle with salt.  Combine well.  Let this sit while you prepare the batter.

In a bowl, combine the eggs and sour cream, mixing well.  Add flour and a teaspoon or so of salt.  If needed, add extra sour cream to get the right consistency for the batter.

Pour cooking oil into a skillet and heat over medium heat.  Dip eggplant pieces in the batter and place in the hot oil.  Fry on one side until well browned, then turn over.  With both sides browned, transfer to a plate covered with a paper towel.

That's it!  My favorite way of serving these is with brown rice and sliced tomatoes.  I should go through my sauce cookbooks and find a good sauce to serve with these but truthfully, they are so good all by themself.



Sunday, February 20, 2022

Old Fashioned Bread Pudding

 A favorite of mine that I don't make too often due to its high calorie content!  But oh, so delicious.

1 16 oz. day old French bread loaf, cubed

1 12 oz. cans evaporated milk

1 cup water

6 large eggs, beaten

1 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, drained

1 large Red Delicious apple, grated (I use Granny Smith)

1 cup raisins

1 1/2 cups sugar

5 tablespoons vanilla extract

1/4 cup butter, cut up and softened

Bourbon Sauce (recipe below)


Preheat oven to 350.  Combine first 3 ingredients; stir in eggs, blending well.  Stir in pineapple and next 4 ingredients.  Stir in butter, blending well.  Pour mixture into a greased 13 x 9 inch baking dish.

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until set.  Serve with Bourbon Sauce.

Bourbon Sauce

3 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup whipping cream

2 tablespoons bourbon

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon nutmeg


Melt butter in a small saucepan; whisk in flour, and cook 5 minutes.  Stir in whipping cream; cook 3 minutes.  Stir in bourbon, vanilla, and nutmeg and simmer 5 minutes.

Friday, February 18, 2022

Cabbage Steaks

A nice lunch or side dish.  Easy prep and surprisingly delicious taste.


Remove the larger leaves around a head of green cabbage.  Wash well under running water.  Cut into one inch slices crosswise.  On each side, brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic salt.

Bake in 400 degree oven for 35 to 45 minutes, depending on your preference.  I leave them in for 40 minutes in a preheated oven.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Sweet Potato Muffins

I love sweet potatoes and this is an especially good recipe.


2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

3/4 cups brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup baking soda

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup melted butter

1/4 cup vegetable oil 

1 cup mashed roasted sweet potato

1 egg

1/2 cup yogurt or buttermilk

Preheat oven to 375.  Prepare muffin tins (I use cup liners).

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl.  In another bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients and fold into dry ingredients just until combined.

The batter will be thick and you may need to add additional yogurt or buttermilk.

Fill muffin tins 3/4 of the way full and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.  Allow to cool in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then remove.

Saturday, February 5, 2022

Blueberry Streusel Coffee Cake

 A delicious start to the day!

Cake batter

2 13/ cups flour, plus extra for baking dish

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter at room temperature

2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 cup milk

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup fresh blueberries


Cheese filling

1 cup ricotta

1 egg

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon grated lemon zest


Topping

1 cup reserved crumb mixture (instructions below)

1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350 and grease and flour a 9x13x2 inch baking dish.

To make cake batter:  Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl.  Cut in butter until crumbly.  Measure and set aside 1 cup of crumb mixture for topping.  To remaining crumb mixture, add baking powder, milk, eggs, and vanilla.  Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.  Pour batter into pan and sprinkle blueberries over top.

To make cheese filling:  Combine ricotta, egg, sugar, and lemon zest in a mixing bowl.  Beat until smooth.  Spoon over blueberries.

To make topping:  Place reserved crumb mixture, walnuts, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a bowl.  Toss to combine.  Sprinkle over cheese layer.

Bake 45 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Baked Eggplant with Tomatoes and Chickpeas

This makes a nice change of pace dinner with high nutritional value.


1/4 cup olive oil

2 medium eggplants, peeled and cut into 2 inch cubes

3 onions, cut in thin slices

2 cloves garlic, minced

salt and pepper to taste

2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed under cold water

1 16 oz. can tomatoes, drained and chopped

1 1/2 cups hot water


In a large skillet, heat the oil to just before the smoking point.  Saute the eggplant cubes, stirring frequently, until they are browned on all sides.  Remove from pan.

Add the onions and garlic to pan and saute for 5 minutes.  Place eggplant in a 9 x 13 baking pan.  Add onions, garlic, salt and pepper.  Combine the water with the tomatoes.  Scatter the chickpeas on top and cover with tomatoes.

Bake in 400-degree oven for 45 minutes.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Artichoke Pie

This is a very good pie with little effort to bake.  Try it!

1 pie pastry

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

2 (8 oz) cans artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (divided)

3 eggs beaten

1 (8 oz) package mozzarella cheese, grated


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Saute garlic garlic until it begins to brown.  Stir in the artichoke hearts and cook 10 minutes before adding the bread crumbs and half of the parmesan cheese.  When heated through, transfer half of artichoke mixture to pie crust.

Pour eggs over artichoke mixture and sprinkle in the rest of the parmesan cheese.  Spoon the rest of the artichoke mixture into the pie and top with mozzarella cheese.

Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until crust begins to brown.

Monday, January 17, 2022

Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

 Here is one that's an old favorite.


3-4 boneless chicken breasts

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup cornstarch

2 eggs beaten

1/4 cup oil


Sweet and Sour Sauce

3/4 cup sugar

4 tablespoons ketchup

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon garlic salt


Preheat oven to 325.  Rinse the chicken breasts, then cut into cubes.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place the cornstarch in a gallon sized ziploc bag.  Put the chicken in the bag, seal, and shake to coat.

Next, dip the chicken into the egg.  Heat oil in a large skillet and cook the chicken pieces till browned but not cooked through.  Place chicken in a 9 x 13 greased baking dish.  Combine all ingredients of the sweet and sour sauce then pour evenly over the chicken.

Bake for one hour, turning the chicken once or twice.

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Round Steak Polynesian

Another old favorite recipe 


3 tablespoons oil

1 medium round steak, cubed

1 onion, chopped

1 can stewed tomatoes

1 small can tomato paste

1 small can crushed pineapple

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 teaspoons salt

½ teaspoon ginger

½ teaspoon crushed chili peppers

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

¼ teaspoon pepper

3 to 4 drops Tabasco

Brown the meat and onion in the oil in a skillet.  Reduce heat and add remaining ingredients.  Simmer for 1 ½ to 2 hours or until tender, stirring occasionally.  Serve over rice.  Yield:  4 to 6 servings.


Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Hamburger Pie

 

This is an old favorite of mine, going back 50 years!


2 crust pie pastry

Filling:

        2 lb. ground beef              ¼ cup ketchup

        1 onion, chopped              splash of Tabasco Sauce

        1 tblsp dry mustard          ¼ teaspoon chili powder

        ¾ cup chili sauce             salt

Brown meat and onion.  Add remaining ingredients.  Place in a pie shell.  Roll remaining dough to make top crust.  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes, or till crust is brown.

Sauce:

        3 tablespoons butter         1 tablespoon Worcestershire

        3 tablespoons flour           2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

        1 ½ cup milk

Blend melted butter and flour.  Gradually stir in remaining ingredients.  Serve over the meat pie.

       

Sunday, January 2, 2022

Mozzarella Meat Whirl

This is an old recipe.  Simple to put together, great taste. . . what more can you ask?

1 1/2 pounds ground beef

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1 egg beaten

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

salt and pepper

sliced mozzarella

dried parsley

3/4 cup ketchup

3/4 cup water

1 tablespoon Worcestershire

Combine the ground meat, egg, mustard and salt and pepper.  With a rolling pin, roll to a 10 x 13 inch rectangle.

Lay slices of mozzarella on top.  Sprinkle with parsley.  Roll tightly in jelly roll fashion and place in oblong baking dish.

Combine the ketchup, water and Worcestershire.  Pour this over the meat.

Bake in 375 oven for an hour and ten minutes, basting with the ketchup sauce frequently.

Serve with mashed potatoes and a vegetable.