Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Brussel Sprouts

I baked some brussel sprouts the other day to go with our dinner. I had never done this before, but bought some a couple weeks ago and ever since I tried them, I have been hooked! They are so tasty!

I cut the cores off and toss in either butter or olive oil. Dash of pepper and lots of salt! I found they were quite tasty eating them raw, so I sampled them until I found the right proportion of salt on them.

I baked them at 425 degrees for 12 minutes and turned them over half way through and baked them until I could put a knife through them. I like them a little firm, not soggy. I also switched my toaster oven to broil to brown the tops after I turned them. 

This is what was left before Nick got home. I sampled some hot out of the oven. They were so good!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Banana bread

When we first got married, I found this banana bread recipe in one of my grandmother's cookbooks. I sadly do not know the source of it, but if anyone does please let me know. I would love to know of more recipes like it. I wish I had thought to write down the name of the cookbook where I got it.

The recipe does not call for any oil, butter, margarine, etc.. but surprisingly is moist and delicious.

After I found this recipe, I never bothered to try another because we like it that much!

Here it is:

6 ripe bananas
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
a pinch of cinnamon

Mash bananas until smooth. Mix sugar and vanilla in. Add dry ingredients into mixture. Still until blended.

Pour into lightly greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until done.

I sometimes will freeze ripened bananas and then let them thaw and make as directed. Simple and delicious!


Monday, March 18, 2013

Cloth Giveaway- Closed

<del>And the winner is: 

I would love the hummingbird cloth. It is beautiful. great giveaway!

Please contact me, Kathy, to receive your prize. 

Open to U.S and Canada.
Leave a comment stating which organic Pakucho cotton cloth you would like to receive:

1. Knitted hummingbird with trumpet flower.
2. Crocheted round cloth with scallop border

Both cloths were made with yarn purchased from Thoughtful Gems. I love her yarn! There are no dyes used in this yarn. It grows naturally in these colors!

One entry per person.  

Instead of choosing a day to do the drawing, it will be done after at least 50 people have entered.
*Update- The original deadline was for 50 people to enter, but seeing as this could take a year! lol I have decided to draw the name today, 3/18/13

    (about 6 inches square)


(measures 6.5 inches from scallop to scallop)

until next time!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Mrs. Lucy's chocolate chip cookies

When I was a teenager one of my friend's moms made the best chocolate chip cookies. She would always make them at our church functions. Any trip we would go on, there would always be a container of those famous cookies. They froze well too and always tasted like they were fresh from the oven.

I never did ask her for the recipe but years later after I got married, I found a recipe in one of my grandma's cookbooks. From what I remember about the famous cookies from high school, these are the closest to it.

These cookies always get rave reviews when I make them. They are chewy and delicious and they freeze well!

2 cups butter (not margarine or shortening)
2 cups sugar
2 cups brown sugar
5 cups oats (crushed in blender)
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. baking soda
24 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
4 c. flour
1 (8 ounce) Hershey bar, chopped
3 c. nuts, chopped (optional)

Beat butter and sugars. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients. Then, add chocolates and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoons on un-greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 6 minutes. Makes 115 cookies. Recipe may be halved. I like to make the whole batch and freeze some.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Easy Peasy Scarf

I finished one of my started projects.

I just casted on 11 stitches with my size 11 needles and knit until it was almost done and then I cut my fringe and finished knitting the rest. It measures a bit longer than 46 inches. It's just the right length. Squishy soft made with 100% merino wool.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Wini Bread

When we lived in Texas, a dear friend shared this recipe with me. I named it after her. This is one variation of the recipe she shared with me. It makes 3 loaves. I like to bake all three loaves at once and give one away, freeze a loaf and enjoy one for supper.

What you'll need:

1/2 cup sugar or honey
2 T. yeast
1/2 cup oil
2 rounded tsp. salt
3-4 cup warm water
1/2 cup blended oats
2 c. whole wheat flour
8-10 c. white flour

Dissolve yeast in 1 c. warm water. Add 3 cups warm water, oil, salt, sugar (or honey), ground oats, and whole wheat flour. Add white flour enough to make a stiff dough. Knead. Let rise until double. Punch down. Let rise again until double. Shape into loaves. Let rise until double.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Brush with butter after they come out of the oven.

These are not heavy as a brick loaves of bread. They are light and fluffy and makes great sandwich bread. Freezes well. Let cool with flour sack towel on top. Slice after cooled.

Dish cloth KAL

I was browsing the forums over at Knitting Paradise and came across this neat blog. If you like to knit dish cloths, check it out. Monthly Dishcloths.

I'm disappointed I didn't find this earlier, but plan to start in April. This will give me a chance to finish up all the projects I've started.

Let's see, on my needles/hooks:

I've got 4 out of 12 pot scrubbers made. Started this shawl to use up some sock yarn I had. It's turning out lovely but going slow. I keep wanting to move the stitch markers and had to take out a few rows already. I can't wait until it's done! I casted on some stitches yesterday for a helmet liner. I've been needing to get that started for three months! Found my scarf I started and knit a few rows on it. Super basic scarf. I'm using size 11 needles with a cast on of 11. Yarn is 100% merino bulky weight and soft and squishy. Made one scarf already with the same yarn and loved it. Still have my TGV shawl to finish but waiting to get some better needles. And, still trying to decipher some crochet dish cloth patterns.

My goal is to finish up most of these projects during spring break which starts on Monday. Well, actually the last day of school is this Friday so technically I have a weekend too. I'll post up some progress pictures as I work on these projects.

until next time!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Thai Cucumber beef salad

When I was in the seventh grade, one of my friend's shared this recipe with me. It's spicy and good to enjoy in the summertime especially when cucumbers are in season.

You'll need:

2 cucumbers
6 green onions
1 to 1 1/2 cups thinly chopped beef (optional)
2-3 lemons
3-5 Thai peppers
fish sauce

To make:
1. Brown beef. Set aside.
2. Peel cucumbers and cut in half longways. Spoon out seeds. (optional)
3. Slice cucumbers paper thin.
4. Cut green onions thin and cut Thai peppers.
5. Put these ingredients in a bowl. Cut and squeeze 1 1/2 lemons into bowl. Add about 2 T. fish sauce. Using a spoon, mash onions and peppers. (or use mortar and pestle) This will start the marination process.
6. Add cucumbers and beef. Mix ingredients and squeeze remaining lemons. Add as much fish sauce to satisfy your taste.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Biscuits and gravy

I make these biscuits every weekend to serve with gravy. A nice change from our regular breakfast of eggs, sausage and hash browns. It's the perfect amount for just the two of us.

Baking powder biscuits- from Betty Crocker

1 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. butter
3/8 cup milk.

Mix dry ingredients. Cut in butter. Add enough milk to make soft dough and knead about 20 times. I put dough on piece of wax paper and bunch up to form a ball. Then roll out 1/4 inch thick and use biscuit cutter. I use my toaster oven to make these and just put them in the sheet as they fit in the pan. The original recipe says to place 1 inch apart for crusty sides or close together for softer sides.

With my 3 inch biscuit cutter, it makes 6 biscuits. Just the right amount for us to have for breakfast!

Bake 450 degrees for 10 minutes.

Look how tall they rose! So light and fluffy.

To make the gravy, I cook two sausage patties until done, breaking it up as it cooks. I add a bit of oil if it needs it. (2 Tablespoons total needed) Then, I add 2 Tablespoons of flour. Salt and pepper to taste. Slowly add 1 cup of milk and stir until thickened. Adding more milk if too thick. Recipe comes from my Betty Crocker book as well.

Serve over halved biscuits. Yum! Yum!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This is one of our favorite dishes to eat. I've used pork but I prefer chicken. I found the original recipe in a Taste of Home magazine but made a few changes to the recipe.

1 1/2 pounds cubed chicken breast or pork
2 T. oil
1/4 cup water
2 T. corn starch
pinch of salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup vinegar
1 cup pineapple juice
1 can pineapple chunks or tidbits
1 T. soy sauce
1 onion
1 green bell pepper
2 carrots, sliced

Cook cubed chicken or pork in oil. Add water and cover and cook for 20 minutes or until done.

While chicken is cooking, in separate saucepan, make sauce ingredients by combining pineapple juice, brown sugar, vinegar, cornstarch, pinch of salt, and soy sauce. Cook on medium heat until sauce is thickened. Set aside.

Add diced bell pepper, carrots, and onion to chicken. Cook until tender. Add in canned pineapple chunks. Slowly pour sauce over chicken mixture and heat through.

Serve over rice.

This makes enough for Nick and I to have for supper with leftovers for lunch.

Cell phone zippered pouches

Last week a friend asked me to sew her a cell phone holder that she wanted to give to a friend. So I took out my supplies and started to d...