Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Swiss Steak

When I think about Swiss Steak I remember one of the first meals I had at my MIL's. She had made this meal with round steak and it was so delicious! She was an amazing cook!
This is a simple and inexpensive way to prepare round steak. Serves 4.

  • 1 round steak approx 1" thick
  • flour
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 284 ml/10 oz can of tomato soup
  • milk..same amount as tomato soup
  1. Pound the round steak with a mallet on both sides until it's about 1/2" thick.
  2. Dredge steak in flour and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Pour a little oil in a frying pan and brown both sides of the steak. Place browned steaks in a roaster.
  4. Empty the can of tomato soup into a bowl and fill can with milk, add to the tomato soup and whisk till well blended.
  5. Pour over the steaks, cover the roaster and bake at 350º for 1 hour and 45 minutes.
  6. I served this steak with mashed potatoes, corn on the cob and a fresh garden salad.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Greek Pasta Salad


With summer upon us, it is time for salads. Here's a Mediterranean twist to a pasta salad...quickly assembled and very tasty.


Pasta Salad:

  • 3 cups / 8 ounces of sea shell pasta *
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 English cucumber, chopped
  • 1-2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese (or shredded Parmesan)
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • black olives (optional)
  1. In large pot of boiling, salted water, cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain. Rinse under cold running water and drain well. Allow pasta to cool.
  2. Combine pesto and sour cream in small bowl.
  3. Place pasta in large salad bowl, together with cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, cheese, pine nuts and olives.
  4. Add dressing and toss to coat.
  5. Four main dish servings.
* Use your preferred pasta...bow-ties or spirals work fine as well.



Monday, June 28, 2010

Applesauce Bee Sting Cake


This simple cake, covered, stays moist and delicious for days. Make sure you invite someone for coffee if you do not want to snack on it endlessly. It's hart not to.

Ingredients:

1/2 c soft butter
3/4 c honey
1 egg (optional)
2 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp soda
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
¼ tsp cloves
1 ½ cups applesauce
1 cup raisins, rinsed

Method:

  1. Cream butter and add honey gradually, then beat in the egg.
  2. Combine dry ingredients and add to first mixture alternately with applesauce.
  3. Stir in raisins.
  4. Spread into 9X9 greased pan.
  5. Bake at 350F for about 45 min. Test with toothpick.
  6. Spread hot cake with broiled icing

Broiled Icing:

1/4 c soft butter
1/3 c liquid honey
1/4 tsp cinnamon
½ cup unsweetened coconut
½ cup chopped fresh walnuts

Method:

  1. Melt butter, add honey and cinnamon. Stir in coconut and walnuts.
  2. Spread on cake and put in oven on broil setting for about 2 minutes, until topping bubbles and browns lightly. (stay by the oven and watch)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Bread for the Journey

Marriage is a gift from God. Today I want to celebrate that gift. We share with you our recipes that we bring to the table and have enjoyed with our families,
so how about sharing with you a .......


Recipe for a Happy Marriage
Paraphrased according to scripture found in
Philippians 2: 1-4

Your life in Christ makes you strong
and His love comforts you.

Have fellowship with the Spirit.

Have kindness and Compassion for one another.

Have the same thoughts,
share the same love and
be one in soul and mind.

Do not do anything from selfish ambition
or from a cheap desire to boast,
but be humble toward one another
always considering others
better than your selves.

Look for one anothers interests
not just your own.

The attitude you should have is the one of Christ!

Two people that love each other come together to share there lives and love for each other, only to find that not all days are picture perfect.
When you are two separate people, independent thinkers, you will definitely not always be of one mind and having the same thoughts. I think that is O.K. God made us all differently with uniqueness about us.
What the Bible stresses, is that you come to a mutual understanding of each other and be respectful of one another as you work toward that understanding of like mindedness..
The goal is to be like minded in your faith,
your commitment to God and each other.
Work towards a marriage that is considerate of each other.
LOVE is a decision, not a feeling.

Keep Christ as the center, and work towards a Christ like attitude.
Every morning is a new beginning,
regardless of what a mess yesterday was!





This is my prayer of blessing for you ....


May BLESSINGS follow you through life
wherever CHRIST may lead you.
May LOVE be right beside you.
May JOY and PEACE precede you.
May GOD'S WORD light your path each day
while GRACE and PATIENCE guide your way.
AMEN
unknown

Saturday, June 26, 2010

BBQ Casserole in Foil Packet



This is a simple casserole to do over a gas BBQ or Coals from a fire. It has no real recipe, and it is simple enough to change to how many people you are serving and ingredients you enjoy eating.

You start with
  1. Two sheets of heavy duty foil, sprayed with a cooking spray. The sheets should be long enough to fold over your food snugly.
  2. Choose from the following, your favorite hamburger patty, sausage or a piece of boneless skinless chicken.
  3. top it with one potato very thinly sliced
  4. a few thinly sliced onion rings
  5. thinly sliced carrot
  6. season accordingly to taste with salt and pepper or herbs.
  7. wrap each packet tightly, so juices stay in the foil.
  8. Place over coals or the top rack of your gas BBQ.
  9. Cook it for 30-40 minutes turning frequently so it doesn't burn.
Serve with corn of the cob or a fresh garden salad. If you want, you eat it right out of the foil packet and there are no dishes to do, BONUS!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Sloppy Joes

Looking for a quick summer meal?
Sloppy Joes are an old time favorite that can be made last minute or ahead of time and frozen. This is a great meal for a crowd with kids. When my dad was an elementary school teacher, he would have his class over to our home for an end of the year party and mom would serve this meal to his students. Simply multiply the ingredients and make a huge pot. Serve with fresh buns, salads and chips. Pick up some Dixie cups for dessert and you're set...or for an amazing dessert after a simple meal make yesterdays recipe of Charlotte's Drumstick dessert. The nice thing about that one is that you can have that ready in the freezer too. Trust me....you'll be loved!

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3-4 dashed Tabasco sauce
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
Method:
  1. In a skillet cook ground beef, onions, and peppers until meat is browned and vegetables are tender. Drain fat.
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients .
  3. Bring to a boil and reduce heat.
  4. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes.
  5. Serve on toasted fresh buns.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Drumstick Cheesecake

With it being summer, I don't want to heat up the house with baking to often. So this is a really tasty dessert that is in the freezer and ready when ever you have unexpected company or just want a little cold treat for yourself. I always make two at a time because it sure doesn't last that long. It really does taste like the Drumstick Ice cream that you can buy. Yum, so good!

Crust:
  • 1 1/2 cups of crushed vanilla wafer
  • 1/4 cup melted margarine or butter
  • 1/2 cup crushed peanuts (salted or unsalted, that is your preference).
  1. Combine above ingredients and press 2/3 into a 9x13 inch pan.
  2. Save the remaining crumbs for the topping.
Filling:
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 cup of peanut butter
  • 1- 8 oz pkg /250 gram of cream cheese
  • 3 eggs *
  • 1 large tub of frozen whipped topping
  1. Cream sugar, peanut butter, vanilla and eggs beating well.
  2. Add the softened cream cheese, mix until smooth.
  3. Fold in the whipped topping.
Topping:
  • 1/2 cup of chocolate syrup
  1. Drop syrup over the filling and swirl through with a knife.
  2. Top with remaining wafers and peanuts.
  3. Freeze.
  4. It is ready when you are.....enjoy.
* if you prefer not to use raw eggs, you can replace it with a small package of vanilla pudding mixed with 1 cup milk to keep the consistency. I have never done it this way, but my friend does and she says she doesn't notice much of a difference, or omit the raw eggs all together.

Editorial note:  Pregnant women, children and people with compromised immune systems should not consume raw eggs because of the possibility of salmonella.  Pastureized eggs are readily available.  (Lovella)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Greek Tomato Sauce/ Chicken Parmigiana


Our son Rick found this recipe when he was studying Greece in Junior High. He served it to his class as part of his project and we've been making it ever since.
It's a wonderfully flavourful tomato sauce made from ingredients
you have in your cupboard..
It is great served over meatballs or shrimp or just plain as a pasta sauce.
I also like to use it for Chicken Veal Parmigiana. (recipe follows)
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup butter (no substitutes*)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 1 can water
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a medium pot, saute` onion in butter and olive oil until golden brown.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and stir.
  3. Simmer, uncovered, for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Chicken or Veal Parmigiana

  • 4 chicken breasts or veal cutlets
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. basil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large egg beaten with a fork
  • 1 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • Greek Tomato Sauce
  • 4 slices Mozzerella cheese
  • grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Lay chicken breast or piece of veal between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound with a meat mallet to an even thickness.
  2. Mix flour, basil, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl.
  3. Dredge each piece of meat in seasoned flour.
  4. Dip floured meat into beaten egg and then Panko crumbs.
  5. Fry in 1/2" hot oil until nicely browned on each side, turning only once.
  6. Place meat on a baking sheet and bake at 350º until meat is done, about 20 minutes.
  7. Top each serving with a generous amount of warm tomato sauce and one piece of Mozzerella cheese, then sprinkle with 1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese.
  8. Return to oven and broil, watching closely, until cheese begins to brown.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Cake Donut Holes

Every once in awhile I like to make cake donuts and the 'donut holes' are always the first to be snatched up so why not just make donut holes? They are good either plain or dusted with icing (powdered) sugar.
This is the recipe my mother used when she made cake donuts.

  • 2 1/2 tbsp butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 1/2 cups flour, approx
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk

  1. Sift dry ingredients together and set aside. I mix 1 cup of flour with the baking powder, salt and spices and then add the rest of the cups of flour as I need them.
  2. Cream butter and half the sugar together.
  3. In a separate bowl beat eggs and the remaining sugar and combine with the butter and sugar mixture
  4. Stir in dry ingredients alternately with the milk to make a dough just stiff enough to roll out, dough should be slightly sticky.
  5. Roll out dough to 1/4" thickness, using flour sparingly.
  6. Cut with floured donut cutter or a very small cookie cutter to make the donut holes.
  7. Deep fry until golden brown..the oil should be 375º although I just test the oil by placing one donut hole in the heated oil and when it immediately rises to the top I know the oil is hot enough.
  8. Shake up the 'donut holes' in powdered sugar. These little morsels can be served for coffee break or brunch.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Pie Plate Cheesecake



I have been making this pie plate sized cheesecake for years since we first ate it at our friend's Shirley's house.  Every now and then my beloved requests this cheesecake. . .it is simple and quick and perfect for a small dinner party if you don't want a lot of leftover dessert in the house.  With fresh fraser valley strawberries now ripe  . .it is the tastiest combination.

  • 1 1/4 cup graham wafer crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
Melt the butter and combine with the crumbs and the sugar and press into a 9 inch deep pie plate.
  • 2  250 gram / 8 oz packages cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 farm fresh eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  1. Beat together the softened cream cheese and the sugar.
  2. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until smooth.
  3. Add the vanilla and then pour into the crumb crust pie plate.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350 F.  It should still be a bit jiggly in the center.

While it is baking mix together
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Spread over the cheesecake after it has slightly cooled.
Refrigerate to chill for several hours.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

As water reflects a face, so a man's heart reflects the man.
Proverbs 27:19

Each of us ladies at MGCC were raised by father's who loved Jesus.
Their lives reflected the heart of God to us.

Six of our dads are still living, and we want you to know that you are loved.
Four dads have gone home to heaven, and are lovingly remembered today.



Several weeks ago I asked the other nine women here at MGCC to describe their dad's to me in several words. I want to share with you what they told me about their fathers....
beautiful reflections of their hearts.

  • faithful and committed to their wives and families
  • gentle soul
  • great sense of humor
  • story teller
  • wise business man
  • accepting
  • forgiving
  • hard working
  • encourager
  • fast driver
  • innovative-inventor-fixer
  • quiet
  • laughs till he cries
  • carpenter
  • generous
  • provider
  • fun
  • sentimental
  • makes wonderful borscht
  • strict
  • appreciative
  • never takes family for granted
  • enjoys spectator sports
  • love of church work
  • helper
This list testifies to 10 Godly men who aspired to emulate our Heavenly Father's heart and love for His family. Fathers that impacted our lives for Christ. Fathers that were good role models in their day to day lives. Men willing to learn new things, step up to a challenge, and could laugh and enjoy life with their families.

One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare Thy mighty acts.
Psalm 145:4
Today I also want to honour my dad.
Many of the things listed above speak of who my dad is.

As a little girl, he was my daddy,
loving, caring, nurturing and I felt safe.

As a teen, he was fun, sensitive, protective and guiding, and I felt loved.

As a young woman, he supported me in decisions, and I felt respected.

As a mom he encouraged me, and I felt blessed.

As a grandma I have a true friend in my dad. He is a constant in my life.
I can depend on him to pray for me and love me unconditionally.
Time and time again he has pointed me to our Heavenly Father,
the one who loves each of us unconditionally.



How great is the love the Father has lavished on us,that we should be called children of God.
1 John 3:1a


Saturday, June 19, 2010

Rhubarb Pie


A few years back...I posted a Tender Pastry Pie Crust. This is one of my favorites. I use this crust for many wonderful recipes....but the trick about using this dough, means keeping the fruit thin, and baking the crust at a high heat for about 25 minutes.
Introducing rhubarb to my family was not easy. This recipe comes from my neighborhood friend. This has been a keeper in my house for many decades. Rhubarb pie is the birthday cake for our birthdays in May.
It's also a perfect dessert for Father's Day!

Check out Tender Pie Pastry
Follow instructions for Tender Pie Pastry.
  1. Divide into halves and roll out the first half to the measurement of your cookie sheet.
  2. Sprinkle sugar on top.
  3. Take about 6 large rhubarb stalks.
  4. Slice the stalks very thin making up to 5-6 Cups.
  5. Then layer the bottom crust with the rhubarb.
  6. Add about 11/2 cups sugar distributed evenly over the whole rhubarb filling.
  7. Roll out another pie crust the same size and flip it on top.
  8. Sprinkle again with sugar lightly on top.
  9. Bake at 425' for 20 min.
Take a look! The rhubarb is layered no more than 1/2 -1 inch thick. This is what allows the pie to cook at a high heat for only a short while.

Make another pastry layer for the top...sprinkle with sugar, and poke a few fork holes, to allow the air to escape. Do not bake longer than 20 minutes at 425 degrees.

Are your taste buds ready to sample this? Next time exchange rhubarb for apples.
This is ideal for a large crowd. Add a scoop of ice-cream and they'll come back for more.

Big Families, Big Pies, & Big Ice-Cream Buckets.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Roll Kuchen


  • 2 cups of sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour
  • oil for deep frying
  1. Combine sour cream, egg, oil.
  2. Add the flour with baking powder and salt.
  3. Knead together till you have a soft dough.
  4. Flour the counter well and roll out to about a 1/4 inch.
  5. Cut into strips, twisting them is optional.
  6. Deep fry in a pan with about 2 inches of hot oil.
  7. Let the oil come to the desired temperature, on your stoves medium setting. This takes a few minutes.
  8. Do a test one, the dough should bubble at the sides, and be browned in matter seconds. Turn the roll kuchen, fry til you have the desired color. DO NOT leave the pan unattended at any time!
The first time that I had this particular recipe is when our friends came to visit us while we were camping. The are a very light and soft texture as opposed to a very thin and crispy one, and don't taste greasy at all. I just love these plus they taste great with jam too!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Pear Pudding Soup

I have no idea how many readers are familiar with the custard-like fruit soups that some of our grandmothers made. One that is very familiar to me is made with a canned pear-apple compote. My mom still cans this every Fall, knowing that we all love to get jars of this fruit to add to porridge or use in pear soup.
The fruit is like a chunky applesauce, yet with more of the pear flavor. Mixed into a thin, vanilla custard, we enjoy this soup alongside pan fried potatoes and farmer sausage or ham. I compare the flavor to a "milkshake with fries" combo.

Ingredients for fruit compote:

3 cups pears, chopped
2 cups apples, chopped
¾ cups water
2 Tbsp sugar

Method:

Bring to a boil and cook for about 40 min, or until fruit looks clear and glazed with most of the water evaporated. Cool. Keeps well in fridge.
Ingredients for vanilla custard:

4 cups milk, divided
2 Tbsp flour
2 Tbsp sugar
½ tsp pure vanilla powder or 1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
fruit compote


Method:
  1. In a 2 quart size pot, bring 3 ½ cups milk to a boil.
  2. In the meantime (in a small bowl) mix flour, sugar, vanilla and enough of the ½ cup milk just to make a paste.
  3. Add eggs, stirring them in well, then the rest of the (1/2 cup) milk.
  4. When the milk in the pot begins to boil, stir in the egg mixture and continue stirring until thick and smooth, bubbling gently.
  5. Remove from heat. Add cold fruit compote, for just the right temperature to serve.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Very Tasty Meatloaf



This recipe comes from A Kitchen Bouquet from Grace Gourmets. It's a church cookbook from Grace Community Church in Panorama City, Ca. (John MacArthur is pastor there). We attended this church in the mid seventies so that's how old the book is. We have always enjoyed this meatloaf because it turns out moist.

Meat Loaf

1-1/2 Lb. Ground Beef
1 Cup bread crumbs
1 Egg beaten
1-1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
4 oz. tomato sauce
1 onion chopped

Sauce:
4 oz. tomato sauce
2 Tbsp. vinegar
2 Tbsp. mustard (any variety prepared)
1 C. water
2 Tbsp. brown sugar or molasses

Mix all first 7 ingredients into loaf. Combine the sauce ingredients and pour half over loaf. Reserve the rest of the sauce for basting occasionally while meat is baking. Bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/2 hour.

If you'd like to experiment mix in some of the sauce to the meat before you form it into a loaf...
Serve with your favorite Meat loaf accompaniments! We like to have it with mashed potatoes and salad.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Old-fashioned Strawberry Shortcake


 
We are enjoying local strawberries...fresh from the fields...these days.  Though strawberries taste good any which way...there's nothing quite like a serving of old-fashioned strawberry shortcake.  This recipe is more like a sweet biscuit more than a cake...and came from my friend, Marlene...some three decades ago.

  •  1 quart strawberries / 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 pint whipping cream / 2 Tbsp sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk

  1. Wash and slice strawberries. Add about 1/4 cup sugar to sliced berries and set aside for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Whip cream at medium speed until soft peaks are formed...adding 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla.
  3. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  4. Cut in butter to make coarse crumbs.
  5. Combine milk and egg and add to dry ingredients. 
  6. Stir with a fork or spoon...just until moistened.
  7. Pat batter into greased eight inch round pan.
  8. Bake at 425° F for about 15-20 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool on wire rack.
  10. Cut cake into wedges.
  11. Split each wedge in half horizontally filling with strawberries and whipped cream...and topping with more of the same. 
 

Monday, June 14, 2010

Greens and Fruits with Sesame Snap Crunch

Summer is salad season. There are so many great salad recipes to choose from, but for this one I just put together some fancy lettuce, added fresh and dried fruits and then broke up Sesame Snaps for some crunch and sweetness. I've added a Pureed Red Onion Dressing recipe to serve on the side...this salad combination has enough goodness in it to satisfy those who pass on the dressing.

Ingredients: for 6-8 servings
  • 8-10 loosely measured cups of fancy or mixed greens
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup dried blueberries
  • 1/4 cup dried cherries
  • 1 cup fresh sliced strawberries
  • 1 large orange, cut into sections
  • 2 kiwi, sliced
  • 1 apple pear, pealed and chopped fine
  • 1 1 1/4 oz package Sesame Snaps (found in the candy isle. each package has 4 thin wafers)
  • Break up the Sesame Snaps and add just before serving.
Toss all ingredients together. Serve dressing on the side.

Pureed red Onion Dressing:
This dressing is a pretty pink colour when blended.
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup oil
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 small red onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp mustard
Place all ingredients in blender and puree. Pour into a jar and place in fridge for at least and hour to blend flavours. This dressing can be made ahead and stored in the fridge for up to a week.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Bread for the Journey

Safe in the Nest
.
Our neighbour's house is standing empty...waiting to be sold.
On the front porch is an artificial fig tree, that this spring
was considered prime real estate by two robins.
It was totally safe from predators, perfectly protected from the elements
and the lawns close by offered an abundance of worms.
Soon eggs were laid in a neatly constructed nest securely supported by the top branches.
I never noticed the nest until the day I took the above photo.
I could not see into the nest , it was too high
so I had to hold the camera up and snap blind.
I was so surprised to see the well developed birds in my photo
and even more surprised that they sat perfectly still
as the camera was held over them.
The next day I went over again to take another picture,
but this time the baby robins panicked and flew out of the nest --- down across the lawn
and between the houses.
The parent birds were understandably upset, calling loudly for their young,
who were now vulnerable.
.
I thought of a verse from Proverbs.... that says....
"Like a bird that wanders from its nest
Is a man who wanders from his place."
Pro 27:8
.
God has built us a nest that is perfectly safe from the things that would harm us.
His laws, commandments are designed to keep us imperious to the elements of this world.
But how often are we like the young birds.
How often the wisdom of this world seems wiser than the Words of God,
and we yield to the enticing , or flattering , or frightening voices around us.
.
But though we search the world over,
there is no place as lovely, or as secure,
as the 'secret place' close to the heart of God.
.
How beautifully is this thought expressed by the Psalmist.
.
"He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High,
shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my fortress,
My God , in Him I will trust!' "
Ps. 91:1,2
.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Sausage Rolls with Honey Mustard Ranch Dip

My Auntie Betty gave me the recipe for this dough years ago and I've used it in different ways.  I used to make little sausage rolls with Smoked Farmer Sausage but I've switched it up a bit to make the pinwheels a tender and attractive little bite  which is easy to take along to add to a party buffet.

Sausage Rolls
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 1/2 warm water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 slightly beaten large eggs
  • 1 cup butter melted and cooled
  • 2  1/2 cups flour
  • 1 small ring smoked farmer sausage. . .any other smoked sausage would work as well.
  1. In a one cup measuring cup add the yeast and sugar to the warm water.  Let sit 10 minutes or until the yeast has proofed.
  2. Put the flour into a mixing bowl.
  3. Add the eggs, the melted cooled butter and the yeast.
  4. Stir to combine well, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour.
  5. While the dough is chilling. . peel the farmer sausage and roughly dice.  Put it into a food processor and pulse until it is uniformly crumbs.
  6. Roll the dough into a long strip about 6 inches wide and about 3 feet long.
  7. Sprinkle the farmer sausage crumbles over the dough and roll up jelly roll style.
  8. Cut into 1/2 inch slices and lay on two cookie sheets that have been lined with parchment paper.
  9. Allow to rise for one hour and then bake in a 375 F oven for 25 minutes or until lightly browned.
If you have leftover sausage crumbles.  . .use them the next day to make easy cheese and sausage buns.  Simply sprinkle the crumbled farmer sausage over cheese on halves of buns and broil on low until the farmer sausage is sizzling and the cheese has melted.

Honey Mustard Ranch Mayo Dip

  • 1/2 cup ranch dressing
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon liquid honey
  1. Stir together and refrigerate.
  2. Serve with Sausage Rolls.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Rhubarb Upside Down Cake with Warm Vanilla Sauce

Nothing is simpler than topping fruit with a cake batter and baking it. Once baked just turn it upside down on a serving plate and you have a delicious dessert. I like to make a warm vanilla sauce to drizzle over each piece...and why not add a scoop of ice cream!

Ingredients for cake batter:
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
Method:
  1. Beat butter until creamy.
  2. Add eggs and sugar and beat well.
  3. In a separate bowl stir together dry ingredients.
  4. In a separate bowl add vanilla to buttermilk.
  5. Alternately add milk and flour mixtures to butter mixture until well incorporated.

Ingredients for fruit mixture:
  • 2 cups rhubarb
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
Method:
  1. Stir together the flour and sugar.
  2. Add Rhubarb and stir well.
  3. Pour melted butter over fruit mixture and stir.
  4. Place the fruit mixture in the bottom of a greased 9" round cake pan.
  5. Top with batter.
  6. Bake in 350º oven for 30 minutes.
Warm Vanilla Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup butter
  1. Melt butter in microwave.
  2. Add milk and sugar, stir well and microwave for one minute. Stir and heat another minute until bubbling.
  3. Add vanilla and stir well. Serve warm over individual servings.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Maple Toast Eggs


These maple toast eggs are a nice change for breakfast..it's a one egg breakfast in a muffin cup!
  • 6 bacon strips, diced..I used maple flavored bacon
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/8 cup butter
  • 6 slices firm textured white bread..I used multigrain
  • 6 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a skillet cook bacon till crisp, place on paper towels to absorb grease, then dice and set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan heat syrup and butter until butter is melted.
  3. Trim crusts from bread, flatten slices with a rolling pin.
  4. Brush one side generously with syrup mixture and press each slice into a lightly greased muffin cup with syrup side down.
  5. Divide diced bacon among muffin cups.
  6. Carefully break one egg into each cup.
  7. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  8. Cover with foil.
  9. Bake at 400º for 18 to 20 min or until the eggs reach desired doneness..I baked them for 22 min.
  10. Serve immediately..I had a little syrup mixture leftover so I drizzled it over the eggs.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Baked Rice Custard

This is my husbands favourite dessert.
His mother made it often and always baked it in this enameled pan.
She was a great cook and taught me how to make many of the comfort foods
we Mennonites enjoy.
This is a baked custard - quite different from rice pudding which is made on top of the stove.


  • 1 cup cold, cooked rice (leftovers work well)
  • 1 cup raisins (sultanas, washed)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  1. Mix cooked rice and raisins in a buttered 6 cup casserole dish.
  2. In another bowl, beat eggs with a whisk
  3. Continue whisking the eggs as you add the milk, sugar, vanilla and salt.
  4. At this point you can warm this milk mixture to lukewarm in the microwave. Do not let it get hot. This is only to speed up the baking time.
  5. Pour over rice and raisins.
  6. Place casserole in a pan of hot water (water should come up the side of the casserole dish to a depth of 1 inch)
  7. Bake at 350º for about 1/2 hour or until mixture is hot.
  8. Turn oven down to 275º and continue to bake. Check often to see when it begins to thicken around the edges. Then stir mixture gently to distribute rice and raisins.
  9. Total baking time will be somewhere between 1 and 1 1/2 hours depending on how cold your milk was.
  10. Continue to bake until a knife inserted into the middle of the custard comes out clean.
  11. Do not overbake.
  12. This is good either warm or cold.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Dried Cherry and Ricotta Muffins


I often have some extra ricotta cheese in the house from cooking and have more than once allowed it to go past it's before date before using it up.  I started to add it to muffins, finding it adds moistness and gives the muffins a wonderful texture. 

Dried Cherry Ricotta Muffins
  • 1 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 large farm fresh eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 2 cups white flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cup chopped dried cherries  (use fresh in summer)
  1. Spray a 12 cup muffin pan and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the ricotta cheese and eggs with a whisk.
  3. Add the buttermilk and the flavourings and then butter.
  4. Add the dry ingredients all together and then stir just until combined.
  5. Add the cherries, just stirring until evenly dispersed.
  6. Fill the muffin cups almost to the top.
  7. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes clean.
Sugar Topping (optional)
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  1. When the muffins are just cool enough to handle without burning your hands, dip them one at a time in the butter then the sugar and put them back in the pan.
  2. Broil on low just until the  muffins brown slightly.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Morning Glory Muffins


These Nutritious and Delicious Muffins are one of my daughters favorites. So when it came to planning her wedding day brunch, I knew that these had to be on the menu.
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of whole wheat
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 cups finely grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cups of dates or raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 apple, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 cup of oil
  • 3 eggs beaten
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  1. Mix all the dry ingredients.
  2. Stir in the carrots, raisins, apple, nuts, coconut.
  3. Add the oil, eggs and vanilla.
  4. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
  5. Makes 12 very large muffins lined in paper cups or greased.
I wish you could scratch and sniff the screen while they are still warm.
Chocked-full of wholesome goodness.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Bread for the Journey


Two weeks ago we were in Colorado
where our son-in-law leads the worship service
in a church that meets in a movie theatre.
The funny thing was that,
other than the faint smell of popcorn,
one would hardly even notice.
The friendly welcome before we even entered the doors,
and again once inside, totally distracted us
from even noticing the upcoming movie posters . . .
and as we stood to sing
familiar songs of praise to our God,
I found joy in seeing these beautiful words
spread across the screen.

I read a verse in Psalm 66:16 this week:

Come and listen, all you who fear God; let me tell you
what He has done for me."

This is what I wish to share, the amazing grace of my Saviour who has ransomed me . . . no chains . . . I've been set free. Like John Newton, near the end of his life, said "My memory is nearly gone, but I remember two things clearly, that I am a great sinner and that Christ is a great Saviour."

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Spinach with Eggs

This is a unique recipe, of sorts, that my mother served (minus the mushrooms) when I was growing up. It’s the kind of dish that, if you are introduced to it early in life, you don’t have too much of a chance to think about the idea of not liking it because of how it looks. I have always liked spinach and have not kept this delicious vegetable from our kids either.

Ingredients:

2 – 3 Tbsp butter, divided
1 cup sliced mushrooms
10 cups fresh chopped up spinach (about 275 gm)
OR 1 pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed
4 – 5 eggs
salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Butter a small Pyrex dish such as a pie plate.
  2. Cook mushrooms in a little butter until juices disappear. Dish into pie plate.
  3. Cook spinach in a large pot with a small amount of water, just enough to steam it until it shrinks down (a few minutes). Remove any excess water and spread on top of mushrooms in pie plate. If using frozen spinach, no need to steam if it's thawed completely.
  4. Season with salt and dot with butter.
  5. Crack eggs on top.
    Bake at 375 F about 15 minutes or until done to your preference. When the egg whites turn white, watch yolks carefully if you want them a little runny.
  6. Serve with hashbrowns, or on a toasted English muffin.


Friday, June 4, 2010

Four Layer Chocolate Dessert

This creamy dessert has been around for years. It's a perfect dessert to serve evening company or take to a potluck dinner.

Layer #1
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped pecans or almonds (optional)
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
Mix together with a fork and press into a 9x13 pan. Bake @350º for 14 minutes. Cool.

Layer #2
  • 1- 8 oz package cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup whipped cream (or cool whip)
Beat together well and spread over cooled crust.

Layer #3
  • 1 large package instant chocolate pudding
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee granules (optional)
Beat together until mixture thickens. Pour over cream cheese layer.

Layer #4
  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Whip cream until it begins to thicken. Add sugar and vanilla and whip. Spread over pudding layer. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Best served within 24 hours. A 9x13 serves 12.

To garnish: grate chocolate over the whipped cream.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

BBQ Meatball Subs

You are sure to please those gathered around your picnic table when you serve them BBQ'd Meatball Subs. I use my hamburger recipe but make meatballs instead of the patties, smother them in sauce and bake. Toasted sub buns with melted cheddar and some sauteed onions make for a mouth watering meal. Serve with fresh veggies and fruit.

Ingredients: for 4-6 subs
  • 2 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce (your favorite)
  • 1/2 cup grated onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup dry bread crumbs
For the sauce mix together in a casserole or roaster 2 cups of the same BBQ sauce and 2 cups tomato sauce. Once the meatballs are baked add them to this sauce.
  1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment
  2. Place all the ingredients in a bowl, get your hands in there and mix it up well
  3. Form 1 1/2" meatballs and place on pan
  4. Bake in 400º oven for 20 minutes
  5. Take out and lean your pan on a bit of an angle so any fat runs off the meat
  6. Transfer meatballs into the casserole with the sauce and give it a stir
  7. Bake at 375º for 1/2 hour, or turn down and keep hot while you get the buns ready.
While the meatballs are baking, saute 1 large onion cut into rings in 1 tbsp butter
Slice open the sub buns and line with cheddar cheese.
Grill under the broiler of your oven until the cheese is melted and the buns are toasted.
Load each bun with meatballs and sauce, and top with onions....you'll need a napkin!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Baked Chicken in Apple Cider


I was given this recipe by a friend over the phone.
I have made it several times for family dinners, and larger pot luck affairs.
It is always a popular dish with people asking for the recipe.
Here it is ....
Ingredients
  • 6 chicken breasts
  • 1 bottle of apple cider (more if you like lots of sauce for your rice)
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp parsley
  • 1 cup whipping cream (if you increased the apple cider, increase the whipping cream too)
Method
1. Season pounded chicken breasts with salt and pepper and thyme
2. Sear chicken in frying pan (locks in juices) with the chopped onion
3. Place chicken and onions in baking dish and pour apple cider over top.
4. Bake in 350' oven for about 1 1/2 hours or until chicken is very tender.
5. Pour juices into a pot on stove top and thicken with cornstarch ( approx. 2 tbsp - or more depending on amout of liquid)
6. Add 1 cup cream , (or adjusted amount) and stir until smooth
7. Add 1 tbsp parsley
8. Pour back over the chicken and keep warm in oven until serving time.
9. Serve over rice.
**

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Crumb Crust Chicken Breasts


Are you looking for a qucik meal to serve your family.  These chicken breasts can be prepared and fried up quickly since they are pounded to a unifrom thickness..
click on the picture to enlarge the tutorial collage..


Since I've discovered Panko Bread Crumbs. . . .I've been coating a variety of meat, fish and poultry in a variety of herb and seasoning variations.  The crumbs stay fresh much longer than regular bread crumbs and I often freeze them to ensure freshness if I don't plan to use them often..
  • 3 cups Japanese style  Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon freeze dried basil  (or finely chop fresh)
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • 2 eggs slightly beaten
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  1. Put the chicken breasts in a resealable bag and pound thin with either a heavy frying pan or a meat mallet.
  2. Combine the crumbs and the seasonings on a large dinner plate.
  3. Dip the chicken in the egg mixture and then dredge in the bread crumb mixture on both sides.
  4. Heat a heavy large fry pan over medium heat.
  5. Melt the butter in the pan, add the olive oil  and then add the chicken but don't crowd the pan.  The chicken will not brown properly if you crowd the pan.  .the chicken will poach in the juices and you will not have a crispy coating.
  6. Brown on both sides and then move the chicken to a dish and pop into a 350 oven while you sear the remaining chicken breasts.  When you have your last ones in the pan, turn down the heat to medium low and continue cooking until no pink remains in the middle of the meat.  This should work out perfectly with the chicken that has continued to cook through in the oven.
  7. Serve with wedges of lemon and give them a squeeze over the chicken pieces.
If you are doing a large family batch. . .you may want to turn the oven down a bit to avoid the chicken drying out.   The chicken should be crispy on the outside. . and tender and juicy on the inside.