Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Easy Clean!

Have you ever had one of those days, where you walk into the kitchen to start a meal and the counters are cluttered? Not cluttered with dishes, cluttered with the remains of the day. Crumbs from getting out a few crackers for a snack, or sugar spilled from sweetening coffee or tea. "Cluttered" in the way a busy household kitchen becomes, as people use it. When that happens and if it has not already, it certainly will, have this simple cleaner ready to go and you will have a clean work area in a jiffy.

"Easy Clean" Spray Cleaner
adapted from:  source not remembered, but thanked!

1 16 oz empty spray bottle
2 T white vinegar
3 drops of liquid dish washing soap

Fill bottle with water almost to the top, add vinegar and liquid soap. Top with spray assembly, secure tightly. Turn bottle over about 10 times to mix the vinegar and liquid soap with the water without creating suds.

To use, spray your "cluttered" surface evenly with cleaner.

Wipe with a dampened cloth.


Now we can get cooking!

As always thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
hearth and soul hop #66 right here at MomsSundayCafe!
gallery of favorites @ 21 century housewife

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Chocolate Mint Zucchini Bread, Recipe rewind, because some things are too good to miss

Recipe rewind, because in the beginning there is a blogger who has no readers. She still posts great food in hopes that the readers will come..........you can also view it here in the archives, Wednesday August 11, 2010.

I had hoped to get this post out earlier, but after picking berries I thought I should snip off the Dusty Miller flowers. It had flowered so beautifully this year, and with so many blossoms it had fallen over with it's own weight!

As usual, I must have been deep in thought (serious or otherwise!) while I snipped because I mistook one of my own fingers for a stem and took a "snip" out of the end of it - ouch! One compression bandage and a few hours later it is fine. Tender, but fine. So lets make some zucchini bread already.

I found these beautiful zucchini while out blueberry picking at a local organic farm. I knew right away I wanted to make something special with them and decided to make up a special chocolate and zucchini bread that was just a bit different than most. Only 3 zucchini went into this loaf, but I definitely have plans for the rest.

Chocolate Mint Walnut almost sounds like a candy bar, doesn't it? I have noticed a lot of different recipes, for zucchini bread. I have also noticed that these new and exciting offerings are really a loaf style cake. A loaf cake serves up easy, is usually complete on it's own and can be packed easy in a lunch. Sounds great to me, and just in time, isn't school going to start some time soon?

Chocolate Mint Zucchini Bread
recipe by the seat of my pants!
oven 350 degrees

2 c flour
1/2 c dry unsweetened baking cocoa
2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/4 t baking soda

2 eggs
1 c sugar
1 t vanilla
1/3 c oil 
3/4 c yogurt or buttermilk

2 medium zucchini shredded - about 1 1/2 cups
1/4 c chiffonade mint

1 - 2 c chopped walnuts, use what pleases your family

1/3 - 1/2 c chocolate chips to garnish top of loaf before baking - if desired

Combine dry ingredients in a medium size bowl, use a large spoon or whisk to combine and mix in the dry cocoa completely.

In a large bowl, beat eggs, add remaining ingredients through yogurt, beat well to combine.

Stir dry ingredients into wet along with the zucchini and mint. Fold in chopped walnuts.

Sprinkle with the chocolate chips, if using and bake 45-55 minutes or until done in your oven.

Time to clean up while the loaf is baking. But the good smell coming from the oven is worth it!

Enjoy! As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
full plate thursday @ miz helen's country cottage

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fruit Salad Freeze

For camping I made a fruit salad. When we are going to be gone a few days camping, to prevent waste, I will use up the fresh items in the kitchen. We had quite a large selection of fresh fruit, and truthfully a lot of it could have been put into the refrigerator and been just fine, but a large fruit salad works well when coming together for a shared meal. It also offers a quick solution for real food when the little ones are hungry.

I also had some sour cream on hand and decided to dress the fruit with a sweetened sour cream topping, and top it off with fresh ground cinnamon. To make the fruit salad fun, I threw in a handful of mini marshmallows, they also work well to soak up a lot of juice that forms.

Now that camping is over, we have a little under half of that salad left. It has "watered" a bit, but the sum of the parts are much better than the food looks now, so now what? Frozen Fruit Freeze, this is a first time try, but it is a good way to present food differently and frozen fruit in sour cream sounds like a good frozen treat to me!

Encore Fruit Salad Freeze
by the seat of my pants!

4-6 c left over fruit salad
honey, agave or sugar if needed to sweeten the finished product (frozen fruit will need a bit of "sweet")


Transfer to ice cream maker, process according to directions.

Then remove to a container and freeze for storage.

And if you only have a bit of fruit salad left, it makes a great "smoothie"!

Recipe rating:  Hmmmm. (thought this would be better)

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post will be shared with:
hearth n soul hop 64 @ moms sunday cafe

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Oranges for children

Welcome to Cookbook Sunday!

Hello, once again it is time for Cookbook Sunday, where you can share the great foods that you have been making for your family and friends. Remember, you may use a cookbook, a cooking magazine or even a cooking app, downloaded to your phone! Just name the source and share with us right here!

I could not resist this special recipe. This is from much more than a cookbook. This book could also have been titled " How I worked very hard and cooked up a great life, full of wonder and memories."

I found this jewel of a book, out thrifting one day. I was drawn to it immediately, and wanted to own it and the lessons of life woven into each chapter. One could assert that these lessons if you will were actually disguised within the chapters. After each chapter story, arranged through the years, there are recipes to match the adventure.

This recipe touched my heart.

Oranges for Children
adapted from:
From Chapter Fourteen, set in the year 2002

Step 1:

Buy a bag of oranges.

Step 2:

Give them to children, that don't have oranges.

I will also be sharing Zucchini Bread, and you,

What are you sharing with Cookbook Sunday?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Zuchinni Bread

Officially summer is gone, done, over. School has begun and life is returning to a scheduled normal. Many sighs of relief can be heard all over town. I remember those days, but I have to ask myself this question. Where did summer go, and how did it pass me by?

It seems like just yesterday summer had began. And now it is over. I have an empty list of summer activities. I did not grill, go to the beach or even cook much these past couple of months. Whew, it's over though, huh? I do have a couple of zucchini on the dining room table. Not from my garden, but they are home grown. They are zucchini bread zucchini, so lets get started.

Zucchini Bread
from:  The Old Farmer's Almanac, Best Home Baking
makes 2 loaves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 2 8X4 in loaf pans, set aside. Grate 1 medium large zucchini.

3 eggs
2 c sugar
1 c oil
1 T vanilla

Beat until combined.

3 c flour
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1/4 t baking powder
1 T cinnamon

Sift/whisk together until combined.

2 c shredded zucchini

Stir zucchini into the egg/sugar mixture. Stir in flour mixture until smooth. Divide evenly into the loaf pans. Bake 45 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes, turn out and let cool completely. Let rest overnight before cutting for best texture.

makes 2 loves

This will be my entry for Cookbook Sundays, link opens September 4th!

Recipe rating:  It's Ok. (tasty but not special)

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is also shared with:
garden variety wednesday @ ms enPlace
gallery of favorites ! premeditated leftovers