Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Curried Broccoli Salad

It's the curry flavoured dressing that gives this old time broccoli salad a new twist. My mom in law brought this salad to share with us along side a turkey dinner. "Pass that salad again please", was heard often throughout that meal together, and now it's become the most requested salad.
Yields 6-8 servings.

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp vinegar (regular or apple cider)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  1. Mix all ingredients together well and place in refrigerator until salad ingredients are ready.
Salad Ingredients:
  • 5-6 cups broccoli florets
  • 6 strips bacon, fried and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup golden raisins and/or 1 1/2 cup seedless purple grapes
  • 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
  1. Wash and cut broccoli into small florets.
  2. Fry bacon, drain and crumble. Cool before adding to salad.
  3. Add remaining ingredients.
  4. Pour dressing over salad, cover well and place in refrigerator. It's best to allow to marinade for at least 3-4 hours before serving.
NOTE: Once you have your broccoli cut up you can add or omit any of the other ingredients. The addition of small cut up cauliflower is a nice addition to this salad as well.  Sometimes I make it simply with the broccoli, onion and raisins and it's still so tasty. Last in the refrigerator for 5-6 days.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Queen Elizabeth Cake

Victoria Day is a Federal Canadian holiday celebrated in honor of Queen Victoria's birthday. The date is also simultaneously that on which the current reigning sovereign's official birthday is recognized.

Caroline Davies from The Guardian wrote an article in honor Queen Elizabeth's 90th birthday this year. Included is a priceless photo by Annie Leibovitz/Getty depicting the Queen with her great-grandchildren and youngest grandchildren. If you check it out you may see what made me smile!

So on this day I had to think of an old recipe handed down to me by my mom.  I'm not sure why the cake is named after the Queen, but my guess is that it is very  much like a traditional English pudding cake, super moist and delicious. I hope you try it.

  • 1 cup dates, chopped fine and 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup butter, soft
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 Tbsp cream
  • 5 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut or mix of coconut and thin slivered almonds
  1. In saucepan, bring dates and water to boil and continue simmering for about 3- 5 minutes until soft. Turn off heat and add baking soda, stirring to mash well. (it will bubble) Add vanilla, Set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare 8 - 9 inch round or square pan by greasing and lining with wax or parchment paper. A spring form pan is ideal but not necessary.
  3. Cream butter, sugar and egg.
  4. Add dates and then stir in the dry ingredients, mixing on low if using mixer. 
  5. Bake for 45 minutes, or until toothpick test comes out clean.
  6. Meanwhile melt and warm butter and cream, adding sugar, coconut and nuts. Stir until well blended and set aside.
  7. When cake is done, gently spread with topping and return to oven to broil setting for about 2 minutes. Watch it so it does not burn. It should bubble and turn a nice golden color.
  8. Let cool. Loosen edges with knife. If not using a spring-form pan, remove by placing a piece of wax paper over the top along with a flat plate. Flip upside down and then right side up again onto serving plate. 

Happy 90th Birthday to our gracious Queen!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Bread For The Journey

I've always thought that the perfect tea towel to dry dishes is well worn, freshly pressed and made of fine linen.  I thought that until this year when I was given this unique, one of a kind, hand-embroidered, treasure for Mother's Day. 

 My darling grands didn't make this happen on their own.  Their creative Mom who has a desire to teach and use every opportunity to build within her children appreciation, helped them to brainstorm what it is their Grammie and Omi do for them that makes them feel loved.  

For my tea towel, they thought and then each came up with something that I bake that they love. Can you figure out what those three baked items are?  After drawing out their ideas, the drawing was transferred onto a good flour sack tea towel and then their little hands helped to stitch and create a treasure.  

The tea towel is draped over my oven door handle and it looks like it is ready to use but truthfully, I feel it is worth too much to risk ruining.  I want to save it and maybe even put in a treasure frame where it stays clean and is protected against rips and stains. 

The problem with this theory is that the children will question why I am not using the gift that they created just for me.  They wanted to give me something that I could use in my everyday routine that would be useful.  

It bears considering then whether the good gifts that Christ gave us when we came to faith in him are being put to good use to help others or are we saving those gifts for when it suits us, when we have more time, more energy or when we feel like our gift will be properly appreciated.  

I'll use that treasure of a tea towel on my best crystal because their gift deserves to be appreciated and put to good use! When I use it I'll be reminded to consider how to use the gift that Christ gave me. 

For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Ephesians 2:10 NLT

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Cinnamon Knots

I love anything with cinnamon and these knots didn't disappoint. Warm from the oven they are a delicious treat with a cup of coffee. If you desire you can use your favorite sweet yeast dough for these knots. At the end if there is any sugar/cinnamon mixture left over you can save it for cinnamon toast.
This recipe is from an old Taste of Home magazine..I made a few changes.
I love the many various ways of using cinnamon bun dough. What do you make with your sweet yeast dough?
  • Dough:
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 4 1/2 - 5 cups of flour
  • Topping: 
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  1. Scald milk, whisk in 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, and salt. Add the eggs slowly whisking the whole time.
  2. Add yeast and 4 cups of flour, mixing thoroughly. Continue adding flour as needed and knead for 5 minutes until the dough feels soft, smooth, and elastic. It's okay if the dough is slightly sticky, it's better for the dough to be slightly sticky than using too much flour.
  3. Cover bowl and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, approx 1 1/2 hours.
  4. Divide dough into 3 even portions, Shape each portion into 12 balls. Work with one portion at a time.
  5. Roll each ball into an 8" rope. Combine sugar and cinnamon from the Topping ingredients.
  6. Dip each rope into the melted butter, then coat with sugar/cinnamon mixture and tie into a knot, tuck and pinch ends under and place on parchment lined pans. Repeat with remaining dough.
  7. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.
  8. Bake in 375º oven for 12 minutes.
  9. Cool slightly then drizzle with icing glaze or serve plain. Either way they are delicous.
  10. Yield: 3 dozen knots

Friday, May 20, 2016

Baked Bean Casserole - Flashback Friday

It was back in 2008 that I first posted this simple recipe for baked beans. Other than frying the bacon this casserole is simply just a stir together and bake recipe. This is a great recipe for a family supper or to take along to a pot luck side dish.
Try dividing this mixture between individual french onion soup bowls or other oven proof individual baking dishes (cast iron mini pans work well), bake, top with some cheese and serve with crusty bread.
  • 2-15 oz. cans kidney beans, not drained
  • 2-15 oz. cans lima beans, drained and rinsed well
  • 1-15 0z. cans pork 'n beans
  • 1/2 pound bacon, fried till slightly crispy
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  1. Open cans of beans and add to a large casserole dish.
  2. Fry bacon, remove and saute red pepper and onion in bacon drippings.
  3. Crumble bacon and add bacon and sauteed peppers and onion to beans. Stir to mix.
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  1. Stir together and pour over bean mixture. Stir to combine.
  2. Bake in 300º oven for 2 hours.
**Just before serving you can top with cheese and put back into the oven until melted and bubbly.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Small Batch Fudge

Since I had a portion of Sweetened Condensed Milk left over from another recipe I did some research on how I could use it and a small batch of Chocolate Walnut Fudge is what I came up with.

4 oz. Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Line a small casserole/pan (approx. 4"x8") with foil, extending the foil over the edges of the pan.
Mix the milk, chips, butter and salt in a microwave safe bowl.
Heat on high 30 seconds at a time stirring after each interval until the mixture is blended well.
Stir in the walnuts.
Pour into prepared pan.
Refrigerate until set, 1 hour or so.
Remove fudge from pan and cut into small pieces.
Store in an air tight container.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Lime Cottage Cheese Salad

This salad has to be tasted before one realizes it is one of those unexpectedly delightful flavor mixes. Who would think of mixing cottage cheese with lime jello?
My sister-in-law, a good forty-some years ago served this salad when we were at her house.
To be polite, I took a small spoonful - but to my surprise I LOVED it !  Of course I asked her for the recipe and it has, over the years, continued to be my favorite jello salad.

  • 2 pkgs -  3 oz. lime jello 
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1 cup cream - whipped 
  • 1/2 cup salad dressing - Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip 
  • 3/4 cup celery, chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup onions, chopped fine 
  • 12 oz. or 1 1/2 cups of creamed cottage cheese 
  1. Dissolve jello in hot water and let partially set, then whip jello 
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients and let set in fridge.