Mennonite Girls Can Cook is a collection of recipes which were posted daily for a period of ten years from 2008 to 2018. We have over 3,000 delicious recipes that we invite you to try. The recipes can be accessed in our recipe file by category or you can use the search engine.

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Fried Rice

We operate our business from home so I need ideas for lunch every day.
Fried Rice is always welcome - it's satisfying and delicious and
is a good way to use up leftovers.
In fact when I cook rice to accompany a main dish, I often cook more than needed
so that I have enough to make this quick dish later in the week.

  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 stalk celery chopped
  • 1/2 red pepper chopped
  • 4-6 cups cooked rice
  • leftover cooked chicken, pork or beef (optional)
  • 2 eggs*
  • 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup frozen petite peas
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • pepper and salt (if needed)
  1. In a large skillet, fry diced bacon. Remove from pan.
  2. Using about 1 tablespoon bacon drippings or oil if preferred, saute' onion, celery and red pepper until mixture begins to wilt.
  3. Add rice and continue to fry until it begins to brown.
  4. Add bacon and meat if desired.
  5. Add unbeaten eggs, one at a time, stirring and frying until egg begins to firm up.
  6. Add soy sauce and peas and continue cooking and stirring for another 5 minutes or so.
  7. Check seasonings, top with chopped green onion and serve.
* If you like, you can use one more egg as garnish. Beat egg, season, and cook in a separate pan until set. Slice finely and serve on top rice as a garnish.

Easy Cherry Apple Strudel

I have had the privilege of visiting Germany several times when I was younger and wanted to recreate a strudel I tucked away in my memory. I think this recipe comes very close. It is so easy since you use store bought frozen Phyllo Pastry, thawed according to package directions.
  • 4 granny smith apples, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 2 cups of pitted sour cherries
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional), I did not use any
  • 2 tablespoons of orange liqueur (optional), I used it
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 12 Phyllo leaves
  • 1 cup melted butter
  1. Prepare the filling, by combining the first 12 ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Brush the 12 Phyllo Pastry leaves with melted butter.
  3. Fan them out in to a circle, laying each piece so that it fits on a 12 inch pizza pan.
  4. Place filling in the center and fold over the pastry leaves over the filling.
  5. Brush the other side of the pastry leaves as you are folding them over the filling with the melted butter.
  6. Sprinkle the top of the strudel generously with icing sugar.
  7. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes then at 350 for 1/2 hour.

Serve warm or room temperature with ice cream if desired.

How to make Marg's Hazelnut Roll

Thank you to Global TV BC for the video clip of Saturday's cooking segment!

If you want to see exactly how to make Marg's Hazelnut Roll. ..Anneliese and Lovella will show you how.  It really is simple and quick! 

Chocolate crinkle Cookies

Years ago my co workers mom brought in a tray of
Christmas baking. This cookie was one of my favourites choices.
For the ones in the photo I used milk chocolate, but try them
with dark chocolate too.
  • 2 cups plus 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 squares unsweetened chocolate, melted
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  1. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
  2. In another bowl beat butter and sugar well, and then add eggs beating until creamy and smooth.
  3. Add vanilla and melted chocolate. Beat well.
  4. Gradually add the flour mixture, mixing just to blend.
  5. Refrigerate dough for 1 hour.
  6. Lightly grease cookie sheets, or line with parchment paper.
  7. Shape heaping teaspoonfuls of dough into balls and roll in icing sugar. Place at least 1 1/2" apart on baking sheets.
  8. Bake at 350º for 12 minutes or until tops are puffed and cracked. Do not over bake!
The random number generator awarded  Jenn as the  winner of Saturday's Cookbook giveaway.

Here is her comment.  " Hey! My mom called and told me that today's show was awesome and that the Hazelnut log looked amazing. Would love to win a cookbook to try all the delicious delights!"  

  JennGrif  Congratulations!!  We will send the book out to you as soon as you email one of us with your address. .from the email address you provided.

Individual Frozen Peppermint Cheesecakes

With Christmas just around the corner, I've been envisioning 
trays of pretty little individual desserts.....just enough!
This cheese cake is so simple to make,
and the only last minute fuss is the garnish.

  • 1-8 oz brick cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 500 ml whipping cream, whipped stiff
  • 1/2 cup crushed candy canes
  1. Beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add sweetened condensed milk and beat will until very smooth.
  2. Whip cream until stiff. Fold into cream cheese mixture until well incorporated. 
  3. Fold in the candy cane pieces.
  4. Fill glass ware with cheese cake mixture. Cover each serving with a good quality wrap. I then place mine into a box with some tissue to protect the glass. Carefully wrap the whole box with a large freezer bag. You do not want your dessert coming out tasting like it has been in the freezer! 
  5. To serve, remove from freezer, garnish and serve immediately. 
Garnish with extra candy chips, whipping cream or shaved chocolate.
Serves 12. **for optimal flavour and texture keep in freezer for only10-14 days**

Today Lovella and Anneliese will be featured on
Global BCTV noon news.
They will be demonstrating Marg's
Hazelnut Roll which is a recipe in our cookbook.

We are also celebrating the sale of over 
20,000 books sold.
Everyone who posts a comment here today (Saturday)
up until midnight will be eligible to win a copy
of our cookbook.
It will be drawn by automatic number generator,
and the winner will be announced on Monday Nov 28, 2011.
Please add your email address to your comment.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

I've been buying containers of ready peeled and cubed Butternut Squash this fall. It is very high in Vitamin A and Beta Carotene. We love Anneliese's Roasted Red Pepper Soup and so I thought I would use her basic recipe and change it into a spicy autumn soup that can be completely vegetarian or meatless depending on which broth you choose to add.

  • 3 yellow bell peppers, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 2 pounds cubed butternut squash
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic
  • a good drizzle of olive oil...enough to coat the vegetables
  • 2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon Sambal Oelek (ground fresh chili paste found in Asian Food section)
  • 1 small can tomato paste
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper to taste before serving. (if your Italian Seasoning has salt in it you want to taste your soup before adding additional salt)
  1. Toss vegetables, garlic and herbs in a large heavy pot and drizzle with olive oil, cover with a lid and bake in a 400 F oven for an hour. Stir it several times in between. The butternut squash will turn dark during the baking and lose its vibrant color but the flavor of roasted vegetables is wonderful.
  2. Stir in water and allow vegetables to cool slightly. Use an immersion blender to create a soup that has some texture. You can leave the veggies right in the heavy pot or put the roasted vegetables in the blender and puree in batches. If you use a blender return the roasted vegetables to the pot.
  3. Add the chicken broth, tomato paste and the Sambal Oelek. If you prefer your soup with less spiciness, cut back on the chili paste.
  4. Simmer for a few minutes and ladle into bowls.
  5. Pass around a squeeze bottle of sour cream to garnish the top. ..and see what the artists in your family create.
Makes enough for 8 bowls.

Turkey Chow Mein Casserole

Let me take this opportunity to wish all our 'south-of-the-border' friends and family a most blessed Thanksgiving!  May your celebrations be filled with peace, love and joy...and may your thankful spirit go with you into the days to come.

Today I am thankful for my husband's sister, Anne...who I only got to know when I married into the family.  She was the oldest of the siblings...the tiniest...and the bubbliest.  She was a wonderful sister-in-law and became a favorite aunt to my children.  She was also a very good cook and I have many recipes in my file in her perfect handwriting printing.  She passed away suddenly eight years ago and now I treasure all those things which came from her.  We celebrated our Canadian Thanksgiving last month and I cooked up a whopping big turkey (33 pounds), which guaranteed lots of turkey leftovers!  I pulled Anne's Turkey Wonder recipe from the file and took it with me to the grocery store to be sure I had all the necessary ingredients.  I came home with a bag of celery, onions, chow mein noodles, soup and water chestnuts, but had somehow left the recipe card at Safeway.  It never showed up so I made the dish as I best recalled and we enjoyed it just fine.  I am documenting what I did right here on MGCC so that Anne's Turkey Wonder recipe will  live on!  If you are looking for a simple and delicious way to use up your leftover turkey in the coming days, try making turkey chow mein. 

  •  2 cups chow mein noodles
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 cups cooked turkey, cubed
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion (red onion adds a little colour)
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 can sliced mushrooms, drained
  • 1 small can sliced water chestnuts, drained
 Topping:  Crushed potato chips, sliced almonds or chopped cashews.

  1. Put chow mein noodles in the bottom of a greased 2-quart casserole.
  2. Combine all remaining ingredients and spread over the noodles.
  3. Bake uncovered at 350° F for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven and add desired topping.  Bake for 10 minutes longer.
I remember my sis-in-law serving this dish with crunchy crushed potato chips on I have always done the same.  I'm sure cashews would be an excellent addition though!

Toasted Turkey Sandwich

If you are wondering what to do with leftover turkey this is a tasty treat for lunch or dinner.

  • Leftover roasted turkey
  • Hearty bread sliced, I used Focaccia
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Havarti Cheese (or any cheese you prefer)
  1. Layer the turkey on the bread.
  2. Spread the cranberry sauce on the turkey.
  3. Top with cheese.
  4. Put second layer of bread on top.
  5. Place in toaster oven to toast the bread and melt the cheese.

You can also add thin sliced onions or mayonnaise to the sandwich if you like.

When you have assembled the sandwich put it in the toaster oven till the cheese is melted. You can also spread a little butter on the outside of the bread and pan grill it on each side until the cheese melts.

Pfeffernuesse -Bev's recipe

I think when it comes to Mennonite food
there are as many recipes for each dish as there are Grandmothers.
My recipe for Pfeffernuesse is quite different than the ones posted previously.
These tiny cookies are quite hard and are meant to be sucked or dunked.
I was told that in years past, the grandmothers would bring them to church for the children to suck on - ensuring they would keep quiet during the sermon.

I like to bake them around this time of year so that the flavours have a chance to mellow
before serving them in December.
However, once my family knows I've made them, they disappear by the handfuls.
The original recipe is a very large one - I think it usually makes about 3 ice cream buckets full. I've halved the recipe to make it easier for smaller families.

Speaking from experience, it's good to read the whole recipe through once before starting.

  • 2 cups golden cane syrup (in Canada it is made by Rogers) this has a unique flavour somewhat different than regular corn syrup.
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup margarine
  • 1 cup milk
  1. Place above ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Cool to room temperature.
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper (yes that's right)
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground star anise
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 7-8 cups flour
  1. Add egg and extracts to sugar syrup mixture, mixing well.
  2. Into a large mixing bowl, sift together 4 cups of the flour with the spices and baking powder.
  3. Pour liquid mixture over and mix thoroughly.
  4. Continue adding flour - dough will be sticky and still somewhat soft.
  5. Cover bowl with lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or up to 5 days.
  6. Spoon out about 1 - 2 cups dough, leaving remainder in fridge.
  7. On a floured board or pastry sheet, roll into long logs about the thickness of your index finger.
  8. Cut into 1/2 inch pieces and place on parchment paper covered cookie sheets. (this makes it much easier to remove the cookies after baking.)
It's a good time to invite someone to help - there are a lot of very small cookies to put on the pans.

  • Bake at 350º for 15 minutes or until set. (if you have a convection oven, the baking goes much faster as you can bake 3 cookie sheets at a time)
  • Repeat with remaining cookie dough.
  • When cookies are baked, remove from cookie sheets and allow to cool completely before storing in ice cream pails.
  • These store best in a cool place like a garage. They do not need to be in the freezer. They will keep for months.
  • If you bake them early in November, the flavours have a chance to mellow.
  • Warning - these can become addictive.
  • Bread for the Journey

    Don't Worry

    Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
    1 Peter 5:7 NIV

    Worry is like a rocking chair ~ it creates momentum and gets you nowhere!

    We know that...but what can we do about it?  What is the prescription for a worry-free life?

    1. We must realize that life is about so much more than food, drink and clothing.  Those things should not be fueling our passions.

    2. We need to 'seek God first'...get our priorities in order.  Our part is to 'seek' God'...His part is to provide our quest.

    3.  We need to let go and let God provide for our needs. 

    I've been thinking about these things since I heard a pastor share a message on this topic awhile back.  Why is it that 3 A.M. seems a perfect time to worry?  I've found it is also the perfect time to pray!  When I awake in the middle of the night...the problems loom bigger than life.  But I have learned that worrying does not produce results.  Prayer does!  

     But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness...
    and all these things will be given to you as well. 

    Therefore do not worry about tomorrow...
    for tomorrow will worry about itself. 

    Each day has enough trouble of its own.  
    Matthew 6:33-34 NIV

    Pork Chop Skillet Dinner

    This pork chop skillet is nice to serve up in a cast iron frying pan. It's delicious and pretty enough for company, in that case you need to have more pork chops on hand.
    • 1 cup brown rice
    • 1 cup chicken broth
    • 2 cups apple juice, divided
    • 2 pork loin chops, approx 3/4" thick
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • 1 cup celery, chopped
    • 1 apple, sliced
    • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
    1. Cook rice, as instructed on your package, using 1 cup chicken broth and 1 cup apple juice instead of water. Reserve 1 cup apple juice for later.
    2. Spray a nonstick frying pan with cooking spray.
    3. Cook pork chops on medium high heat until browned on both sides, approximately 6 to 7 minutes on each side. salt and pepper to taste. Remove from pan and set aside.
    4. In the same pan melt butter, add celery, apple slices, and thyme. Cook until semi tender.
    5. Combine cooked rice, celery, and apple mixture, and pour into cast iron frying pan. Pour reserved cup of apple juice over this mixture.
    6. Place pork chops on top, cover with foil and bake in a 375º oven for 30 minutes.
    7. Remove foil and serve from frying pan. A salad or coleslaw is a nice addition to this meal.
    8. Serves: 2

    Hazelnut Bran Muffins

     We are fortunate to live in the valley where hazelnuts are easily grown.  Hazelnut trees bloom in the middle of winter and the wind carries their pollen from yellow catkins to tiny red flowers.  The nuts don't begin forming until June and harvested later in October.  Hazelnuts are one of the lowest in saturated fats and an excellent source of "good fats." With the ever-growing appreciation of the benefits of antioxidants, it's good to know that all nuts are excellent sources, with hazelnuts being the best.
    You know how everyone wants to eat the crusty top?  I can guarantee you that this muffin is crusty the whole way through. This has become a family favorite, and it seems as if  I never get enough to freeze. You may want to consider doubling this recipe.

    Hazelnut Bran Muffins
    • 1 cup buttermilk
    • 2 tablespoon molasses
    • 1 egg
    • 2 tablespoon butter
    • 2/3 cup chopped dates
    • 1/2 cups hazelnuts chopped coarsely
    • 1 1/2 cups bran
    • 1 cup whole wheat flour (freshly ground)
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 cup mashed bananas
    1. Combine milk, molasses, eggs, butter, dates, hazelnuts, and bran in a large bowl and stir.
    2. Sift dry ingredients and add to moist ingredients in large bowl.
    3. Mash bananas and add them to the moist mixture.
    4. Fill greased muffin tins 2/3 full and bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes.

      I've made my order for fresh hazelnuts and so can you, by contacting Poplar Grove Arbor,
      Email address: or phone: 604-796-2550

      Thanksgiving Cupcakes

      My daughter-in-law made these cupcakes last year for a family occasion in which we were giving thanks. No kidding! There are other days in which to give thanks! But since we are nearing the actual Thanksgiving holiday in the USA, I thought I'd post these now. I found out, after the fact, that this is a Betty Crocker idea, however the cupcake recipe is an old family favorite, I posted a while back. I will post it again for convenience.
      • 3/4  cup sugar 
      • 2 eggs
      • 2/3 cup oil
      • 1 cup buttermilk
      • 1 tsp vanilla
      • 2 cups flour
      • 2 teaspoons baking powder
      • 1 teaspoon baking soda
      • 4 tablespoons baking cocoa
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt
      1. Mix sugar and eggs well, gradually beating in the oil, then the buttermilk and vanilla.
      2. Stir in combined dry ingredients. Sift if the cocoa is lumpy.
      3. Fill paper-lined muffin tins 3/4 full. Makes 12 large or 18 medium sized cupcakes. 
      4. Bake at 350° F for 20 min. Remove to cooling rack.

      Frosting and Decor:
      • 1/4 cup butter, soft
      • 2 cups icing (confectioners) sugar
      • 3 tablespoons baking cocoa, sifted
      • 4 - 5 tablespoons milk
      • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
      • corn candy
      • chocolate sprinkles
      • candy for eyes, optional
      1. In a small deep bowl, beat butter, sugar and cocoa with wooden spoon until smooth.
      2. Add milk and vanilla, stirring until smooth.
      3. Spread cupcakes using a butter knife. Add chocolate sprinkles.
      4. Add a little more confectioner's sugar to the leftover frosting to firm it up a bit and, using a piping bag or small zip-lock with a hole cut in the corner, pipe the heads for the turkeys.
      5. Add corn candy for feathered tails and beaks.

      Posted by Picasa

      Individual White Chocolate and Lime Cheesecakes

      Individual miniature desserts are becoming popular.
      Recently my cousin gave me these pretty little dishes
      that included just the right size spoons.
      We had been invited to my aunts for dinner and she had served a wonderful
      chocolate dessert in similar dishes. 
      I began to dream up desserts to serve at my next dinner party.
      Cool lime, smooth cream cheese, and rich white chocolate.
      It was decadence......just the right amount.
      (see bottom of recipe for 'chocolate cheat')

      • 1 package plain gelatine
      • 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
      • 2 8oz packages cream cheese, room temperature
      • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
      • 1/2 tbsp lime zest
      • 2/3 cup white chocolate morsels, or any good quality white chocolate, melted
      • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped 
      1. In a small glass bowl heat lime juice till just warm. Stir in gelatin and set aside, stirring occasionally.
      2. In a large mixing bowl beat together cream cheese, sugar, and zest.
      3. To melt chocolate, place in a small bowl and microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring each time. Just microwave until you can get a smooth chocolate paste. If you do it too much you will have to start be careful not to burn it. You can also melt the chocolate o the stove top over a simmering pot of water. Make sure no water gets into the chocolate or it will seize up.
      4. In a separate bowl whip cream.
      5. Pour gelatin mixture and white chocolate into cream cheese mixture. Fold in whipped cream.
      'Chocolate Cheat'
      Let it be known.....I used a box for the chocolate dessert. As we were enjoying my Aunt Martha's dessert she let us in on a was from a box. Fooled us all. Her dishes were filled with pudding, topped with a mound of fresh raspberries, and a dollop of whipped cream. 
      I perused the pudding isle at the grocery store and choose one that looked guests were also fooled, and all I had to do was add the milk and stir. The one I choose also had another little ouch of chocolate that you pour over the pudding and it crusts on a DQ ice cream cone. Loved it!
      Don't feel pressured to always have to make something from scratch. Put a little thought into something simple and dress it up a bit.
      For the dishes- I love snooping through second hand stores for wee little dishes to serve jams and jelly in. 
      I found a set not long ago that I picked up for miniature desserts....I think I paid .10 cents a piece. 

      Mandarin Cheese Cake

      Sponge Cake Base:
      • 2 eggs
      • 1/3 cup sugar
      • 1/2 cup of sifted flour
      • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
      • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
      1. Beat eggs and sugar for about 5 minutes, and very light and fluffy..
      2. Add the vanilla
      3. Sift the dry ingredients together and mix into the egg batter and mix together til all is well mixed together.
      4. Grease a 9" spring form pan lightly.
      5. Pour in the batter and bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
      6. Leave in pan to cool completely.
      7. Remove cake after it has been cooled and place on to serving platter.
      Cream Cheese Topping:
      • 8 oz brick of cream cheese
      • 1/2 cup of sugar
      • 1/2 pint of whipping cream, whipped
      • 1 tin of mandarin oranges, drained, reserving the liquid
      • 1 small package of lemon flavored gelatin
      1. Dissolve the gelatin in the hot reserved juice and stir til the powder is dissolved completely.
      2. Let partially set until it is the thickness of an unbeaten egg white.
      3. Whip together the cream cheese, sugar, and fold in whipped cream
      4. Add the gelatin and stir in the mandarin segments that have been cut in half. Reserve a few to decorate the top.
      5. Place the spring form ring around the cake which is on the serving platter and close the ring.
      6. Pour over the cream cheese mixture and let it set in the refrigerator for several hours or over night.
      7. Take a sharp knife and go around the edge of the cheese cake to loosen it from the ring.
      8. NOTE: Change up the flavors buy using strawberry flavored gelatin powder and Strawberries, or any flavor you life ie. raspberry mixed with blueberry etc.
      9. This freezes well. Thaw in fridge for several hours before wanting to serve it.

      Pesto Dinner Rolls

      Pesto rolls...baked in a cast iron skillet...and served hot from the oven. What could be better? And if there are any rolls left when dinner is done...they make the best sandwich buns!

      • 2 1/2 - 3 1/2 cups flour
      • 1 teaspoon salt
      • 1 teaspoon sugar
      • 1 Tablespoon instant yeast
      • 1 cup warm water
      • 1 Tablespoon oil
      • 4 Tablespoons pesto

      1. Mix 2 1/2 cups of flour with salt, sugar and yeast in a mixing bowl.
      2. Add oil and warm water to dry ingredients and mix.
      3. Stir in pesto. (Use store bought pesto...or make your own.)
      4. Continue to add flour as necessary to make a soft dough. 
      5. Knead until smooth and elastic.
      6. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk...about an hour.
      7. Divide dough into eight portions.
      8. Form eight rolls and position in a well-oiled cast iron pan. (Or make12 smaller rolls.)
      9. Cover with a clean towel and allow them to rise in a warm place for at least an hour...until doubled in size.
      10. Bake at 375°F for 20 minutes.
      Note ~ Normally one would let the dough rise before forming buns to put on the in step 6. One day I was rushed for time...and put them on the pan right after mixing the dough. They turned out great.

      Bread for the Journey-

      Isaiah 58: 11 & 12
      The LORD will guide you always;
      He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame.
      You will be like a well-watered garden
      like a spring whose waters never fail.

      There have been dry seasons in my walk with God.
      Perhaps you can identify.
      Your prayers seem to go no further than the ceiling
      and reading your Bible seems more a chore than a delight.
      Do you give up and resign yourself to living in a drought ravaged land?
      Or do you get up and walk until you find water and lush growth again.
      I know from experience that walking by yourself does not work.
      You trudge along day by day and
      just when you think you'll find your way out of that dry place,
      you are back where you started.

      The more reliable option is to remember God's promises
      and to choose to believe that God is walking beside you.

      Psalm 23:4
      "Even when walking through the dark valley of death I will not be afraid,
      for you are close beside me, guarding, guiding all the way."

      There will be deserts and dark valleys along our life's journey.
      The important thing is to remember He is with us during those times.
      He promises to never leave us or forsake us and that includes those dark and dry times.

      When we invite Him to walk with us through the desert,
      He is our shade in the heat of the noonday sun
      and He provides food and water for our hungry and parched souls.
      He leads us to green pastures, restores our souls and turns the dry desert
      to a well watered garden.

      Pizza Bruschetta Gluten Free

      My granddaughter's favourite snack is this Pizza Bruschetta.
      The crust is a thin, crispy cheese bread that freezes well.

      Pizza Crust
      • 1/2 cup warm water
      • 1 tsp sugar
      • 1 tsp unflavored gelatin
      • 1 rounded tbsp of yeast
      • 1/4 cup white bean flour
      • 1/4 cup millet flour
      • 1/3 cup brown rice flour
      • 1/4 cup potato starch
      • 1/3 cup tapioca starch
      • 1/2 tsp. salt
      • 1 tsp xanthan gum
      • 1/2 cup warm milk
      • 1 eggs
      • 2 tbsp oil
      • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
      1. Mix sugar and gelatin , add the warm water, stir in yeast and let proof until bubbly and doubled
      2. Blend together all dry ingredients
      3. In mixer bowl beat eggs , add warm milk and oil
      4. Add proofed yeast to liquids
      5. Add all at once the dry ingredients
      6. Mix at low speed until blended - then on high for one or two minutes
      7. add cheese
      8. Lightly grease a 12x17 inch baking pan , and turn dough into pan
      9. Moistening hand with warm water as needed, smooth dough evenly in pan
      10. Let rise for about an hour -- or until doubled
      11. Bake at 350 degree until lightly browned (about 25 minutes)
      12. Let cool
      13. Cut into 6 pieces
      14. Use immediately or freeze until needed
      • 1 tomato chopped very fine
      • 1/4 cup onion greens
      • 1 tsp dried chopped basil
      • 2 tbsp olive oil
      • 1 tbsp vinegar
      • salt and pepper to taste
      • shredded cheese - favourite mix

      • garlic clove
      • pizza sauce (optional)
      1. Mix all ingredients - except for garlic clove and pizza sauce
      2. Using either fresh or frozen pizza crust rub surface with cut garlic clove
      3. Optional - spread crust with pizza sauce
      4. Spread with tomato/basil mixture
      5. Top with shredded cheese
      6. Bake in oven or toaster oven until heated and cheese is melted
      7. Enjoy hot !

      Remembrance Day

      Today is Remembrance Day in several countries including Canada. It’s Veteran’s Day in the United States. A day designed to remember and perpetuate peace through good will between nations. A day to remember those who gave some and those who gave all for their country and countrymen.
      I want to be sensitive to the Mennonite Communities position of Pacifism. As many of you know I am the one “Mennonite Girl” who is not a Mennonite. I do not come from a background of Pacifism. I have relatives who fought in WWII, Vietnam, and our son in law Andrew is serving in Afghanistan as a Marine right now. Many Mennonites have served in other capacities during war times and their work is appreciated. We are united in our love for the Lord and our love for our fellow man. I would appreciate your prayers when you remember our Andrew that God will bring him home safe and sound. Today is a good day to pray for our men and women who have suffered much while serving our countries.
      John 15:13 ~ Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
      They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
      Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
      At the going down of the sun and in the morning
      We will remember them.
      How grateful we can be to live in lands where freedom reigns. How grateful we should be to God who reigns over all.
      Looking forward to that day when all wars will cease…

      Banana Chiffon Cake

      Chiffon cakes might seem like a lot of steps but if you enjoy the process and take your time you will be rewarded with a light and fluffy cake that is perfect for a special celebration.

      • 2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
      • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
      • 3 teaspoons baking powder
      • 1 teaspoon salt
      • 1/2 cup oil
      • 5 egg yolks
      • 1/3 cup lemon juice
      • 1 cup mashed banana
      • 1 teaspoon maple flavoring
      • 1 teaspoon lemon rind
      • 1 cup egg whites
      • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
      1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
      2. Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a medium bowl.
      3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the oil, eggs, fresh lemon juice, banana and lemon rind.
      4. Beat until smooth. The mixture will be thick.
      5. Put the egg whites and cream of tartar into a large clean bowl. (make sure there is no oily residue on the bowl and no specks of yolk)
      6. Beat the egg whites until very stiff. Watch closely that they don't start to break down and become lumpy.
      7. Mix together the batter mixture with the beaten egg whites with a rubber spatula, folding it carefully. Do not stir as it will deflate the egg whites and your cake will be tough and flat.
      8. Turn the batter into an ungreased 10 inch tube pan and bake on the bottom rack of your oven for about 65 minutes or until the tops springs back when lightly touched.
      9. Invert the pan. You don't want the cake top to touch the counter so create a space by putting the edges of the pan over to taller items like inverted bread pans for instance.
      10. Allow to cool and then slice carefully down the edges and remove the cake from the pan and place the cake upside down on a cake platter.
      Decorate the cake with Chocolate Ganache, Candied Walnuts and broken Skor bars and drizzle chocolate syrup over each slice and garnish with some sliced bananas and a dollop of ice cream.

      Chocolate Ganache
      • 1 pound good quality dark chocolate
      • 1 cup heavy cream
      • 2 tablespoons sugar
      • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
      • 1/4 unsalted butter.
      1. Finely chop the chocolate
      2. Bring the cream, sugar, corn syrup and butter to a simmer.. .stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
      3. Remove from heat and add the chocolate, stirring until smooth.
      4. Add the butter and continue to stir until smooth.
      Candied Walnuts
      • 1 1/2 cups fresh walnuts
      • 1/2 cup sugar
      • pinch of salt

      1. Spread the walnuts on a cookie sheet and toast them for about 5 minutes in a 325 F oven. Watch them closely so they don't burn.
      2. In a small saucepan, stir the sugar constantly with a wooden spoon until it begins to melt. When the sugar melts and the color turns a warm amber, add a dash of salt and  quickly stir the walnuts into the sugar and then quickly dump onto a piece of parchment paper to cool. Break apart to decorate the cake top.

      Wiener Rolls

      These wiener rolls are ideal for lunches to take to work or school. They are great for a quick meal, just add a bowl of soup or a salad. My son loves these smothered with tomato soup gravy. The dough is simple and easy to work with.
      • 1 3/4 cups flour or use 1 cup white and 3/4 cup whole wheat
      • 3 teaspoons baking powder
      • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1 teaspoon salt
      • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard 
      • 1/4 cup shortening
      • 1/2 cup sour cream
      • 1/2 cup milk
      • 9 wieners, cut in thirds
      1. Mix dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl or in your food processor.
      2. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender.
      3. Stir in sour cream and milk. Mix just until a ball forms.
      4. Using a little flour, roll out the dough and cut into strips, the width of the wiener pieces. Cut each strip into squares, just large enough to roll the wiener piece.
      5. Roll up a piece of wiener in each square and place seam side down on a parchment lined sheet. Usually I end up using 9 wieners, depending on the size of wieners or how thick my dough has been rolled out. 
      6. Bake in a 400º oven for 15 minutes.
      7. Serve with your choice of mustard, a salad, or a bowl of soup.
      8. Yield: 27 rolls

      Mexican Meatballs

      This is one of my standby recipes that has been a favorite of our family since the boys were little.
      You can adjust the spiciness of the dish by using less salsa.

      •  2  pounds lean ground beef
      • 1 medium onion, chopped fine or grated
      • 1 clove garlic, minced
      • a small handful of fresh chopped parsley
      • 1 package taco seasoning
      • 1 egg
      1. Mix together all the meatball ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.
      2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
      3. Using a small spring-loaded ice cream scoop, make meatballs and put them on the cookie sheet.
      4. Bake them at 400 for 15 minutes.
       Mexican Meatball Sauce
      • 1 can tomato soup
      • 1 can mushroom soup
      • 1 can full of salsa  (fill one of the emptied soup cans)
      • 10 large button mushrooms, sliced
      • 1 tablespoon oil
      • 2 cups of shredded cheddar or a tex-mex mix
      1. In a large oven-safe Dutch oven, fry the mushrooms in the oil over medium heat until the mushrooms have released their liquid and the mushroom begin to brown.
      2. Add the remaining liquid ingredients and bring to a simmer.
      3. Add the cheese.
      4. Add the meatballs and cover and bake at 350 for one hour.
      Serve over rice and have a bowl of tortilla chips to dip into the extra sauce.

      Bread for the Journey

      A reader once left a comment asking why we have so many posts called Bread for the Journey when there is nothing about bread in there. In my response I explained these posts as giving reference to a spiritual hunger for bread that feeds our souls.

      It reminded me of a Bible story in John 4.
      The setting is in Samaria, a town called Sychar.

      Jesus, weary from travel, sat down by the community well. Soon a woman from the area came to draw water and Jesus asked her to for a drink. The woman’s initial response was a bewildered question as to why this Jewish man would ask a Samaritan woman for water, since they had nothing in common. Jesus said to her,

      If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”

      The woman, seeing that Jesus had nothing to draw water with wondered where or how He planned to get this living water. Jesus explained to her that everyone who drinks the water from this particular well, will be thirsty again, but that those who take the water that he offers, will never be thirsty again.

      Indeed, the water that I give him will become in him a spring of water,
      welling up to eternal life.”

      Obviously this kind of water sounded good to the woman and in further conversation she learned that Jesus knew a whole lot more about her past than she would have wanted to let on . . . but, surprisingly, it freed her up to believe. Any man who knew her past and still offered her spiritual water for life, had to be the Savior they were waiting for.

      Lord God, I thank you for the way you quench the thirst in our soul. I pray You will bless each reader here today with refreshing water from Your well of forgiveness, love and hope for eternity.

      Schmooa Kumpst

      A young lady who stopped at our book signing table at the West Coast Women's Show asked about this dish that she remembered her grandmother making.
      So here in answer to her request is the recipe.

      Schmooa Kumpst is the Low German name that I remember this recipe being called in my childhood.
      In German it would be Geschmoorte Kohl or geduenstetes Kraut (Stewed Cabbage)
      Although I didn't care for it as a child, I did grow to like it as I grew older.
      It is a delicious side dish - could be served with a schnitzel or roast beef dinner.
      It is traditionally served hot, but I rather like it cold too.

      • 6 cups chopped or shredded cabbage
      • 1 cup finely chopped dried apple rings
      • 10 prunes -- quartered
      • 1/4 cup raisins (optional)
      • 1/2 cup water
      • 1/3 cup oil
      • 1 tsp salt
      • 1 tbsp vinegar
      • 3 tbsp sugar (less if desired)
      1. Mix fruit and cabbage in saucepan
      2. Mix remaining ingredients and add to fruit and cabbage
      3. Cook stirring until mixture boils
      4. Remove from stove and put into slow cooker -- setting on high and cook for 1 1/2 hours. (can also be simmered on stove top - stirring occasionally)
      5. Serve hot immediately or refrigerate and reheat when needed.

      Sloppy Joe Pizza

      I don't remember my mom ever having a pizza pan. She made pizza on cookie sheets, so I had square slices before I ever had triangular pieces. They taste the same. Anyways, using sloppy joe sauce on pizza is something I did when the kids were teen-agers and for some reason I often made it on a large cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Recently I made it for just the two of us. It was great! And there was plenty left for lunches!

      For the crust I used my trusted French Bread recipe. It's on this blog, but I will post it again so it's on the same page.

      Ingredients for Crust:
      • 2 tablespoons sugar
      • 2 tablespoons oil
      • 2 teaspoons salt
      • 2 cups hot tap water
      • 2 cups multigrain flour
      • 2 1/2 - 3 cups unbleached flour
      • 2 tablespoons instant (quick rise) yeast
      Ingredients for topping:
      • 1 pound lean ground beef
      • 1 package sloppy joe seasoning
      • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
      • thin slices of pepper, any color (optional)
      • 4 cups cheese (mix of favorites or mozzarella)
      • 1 tablespoon freeze dried basil
      • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
      • sprinkle of crushed chilies (for those who like a bit of heat)
      Method for Crust:
      1. Put sugar, oil and salt in mixing bowl. Add hot water and stir in two cups flour.
      2. Stir in the yeast and add 1/2 cup of flour at a time stirring until all the flour is mixed in well.
      3. Knead for a few minutes until smooth.
      4. Cover with towel and plastic bag and let rise for 20 - 30 minutes.
      5. With greased or floured hands, scoop around the edge of the risen dough to deflate.
      6. Pinch off about 2/3 of the dough to spread out on a greased 11x17 inch pan. If your pan is smaller, use half the recipe for one pizza or if using medium sized pizza pans, divide the dough into three. (Use any leftover dough to form a loaf, cut shallow lines into it, cover, let rise and bake 20 minutes.)
      7. Once you have spread the dough on the pan, let it rise for 30 minutes
      8. Bake at 400 F for about 10 minutes... only until just done.

      Method for Pizza:
      1. While dough is rising . . . brown the meat.
      2. Add seasoning, tomato paste and 1/2 cup water.
      3. Cook 5 - 10 minutes.
      4. Spread on baked pizza crust (hot or cold)
      5. Cover with sliced pepper if desired, or just cheese.
      6. Sprinkle with basil and oregano. Hot pepper flakes if desired.
      7. Bake about 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.
      8. Large cookie sheet serves 6-8
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      Orange Cranberry Muffins

      Orange and cranberry with a touch of wheat germ for a nutty flavour.
      All in a muffin for those cool autumn mornings.

      • 1 2/3 cups flour
      • 1/3 cup wheat germ
      • 1/3 cup sugar
      • 3 teaspoons baking powder
      • 1 teaspoon salt
      • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
      • 1 egg
      • 1/2 cup orange juice
      • 1/2 cup orange or peach marmalade
      • the zest from one orange
      • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
      • 1/4 cup milk
      • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
      • 1/3 cup brown sugar
      • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
      1. Grease muffin cups or line with paper liners.
      2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
      3. Combine dry ingredients and chopped pecans in a mixing bowl.
      4. Beat egg lightly in a small bowl and add orange juice, marmalade, orange zest, oil, milk and dried cranberries.
      5. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix only until completely moistened.
      6. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups filling each two thirds full.
      7. Mix topping and sprinkle about 1/2- 1 teaspoon over each muffin.
      8. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15 - 20 minutes. Test with a toothpick to be sure they are baked through.
      9. Remove muffins from pan to a rack.
      10. Serve warm.
      11. Makes 12 medium sized muffins.

      Molasses Wheat Bread

      I can remember baking this bread for the first time back in 1983. The bread was hard, dense and didn't rise much at all. My husband was so sweet and told me I made it just the way he like it, a good heavy dense European Bread and ate the whole thing, what a guy. Over the years and determination not to give up on yeast baking, it is one of my favorite and therapeutic things to do. It still is a bit of a denser bread because of the heavier whole grains but it is full of flavor and goodness.

      • 2/3 cup nonfat dry milk powder
      • 1/2 cup of rolled oats (quick cooking is fine but not instant)
      • 1/2 cup of wheat germ
      • 1/2 cup of bran
      • 2 cups of whole wheat flour
      • 1 cup of unbleached all purpose flour
      • 2 teaspoons salt
      • 2 tablespoons of instant yeast
      • 3 cups of additional unbleached all purpose flour
      • 1 3/4 cups of warm water
      • 1/4 cup liquid honey or brown sugar if you have no honey
      • 1/4 cup molasses
      • 2 beaten eggs
      • 2 tablespoons oil
      1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees to proof your dough before you mix everything together, and shut it off. The warm oven will be just right to let the dough rise and the opening and closing of the oven door will cool it down just enough. You can leave the oven light on to keep the dough nice and warm.
      2. Combine first 8 ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
      3. Add all the liquid ingredients to the flour mixture.
      4. Stir in remaining flour, a cup at a time until it becomes difficult to stir.
      5. Turn flour out onto a floured surface and knead the bread adding enough flour to make a soft but a bit sticky dough. About 5 minutes.
      6. Put the dough into a lightly greased bowl. Turn the dough in the bowl so the surface is covered in a light coating of oil.
      7. Cover with a tea towel.
      8. Let rise for a good hour or until double in bulk.
      9. Punch the dough down, let rest for 10 minutes.
      10. Shape into two loaves and place in greased loaf pans, mine are about 8x4x2.
      11. Cover again, and let rise another hour in the warm oven.
      12. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.
      13. Remove from pans and let cool on rack.
      14. I find that after it has cooled I am able to slice it and freeze it only taking out a few slices at a time if you don't want need to use the whole loaf.