Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Garden Tuesday, the one where I am telling the plants what they are

I received this garden marker from my son and granddaughter, a thoughtful and sweet gift. They had gone to a neighboring town to visit a park, and afterwards stopped at the festival, which included little stands with homemade items for sale.

My son said " when I saw the garden markers, I knew if they had one that said "rhubarb" I needed to buy it for you, because no one has worked so hard to have rhubarb".

So be warned rhubarb, I have marked where you are, and I will be back to harvest..........


My surprise came, when pulling back some of the brown paper mulch to see if I need to water, look what I found.....



It looks like the rhubarb is growing since being moved from house one to house two!

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

this post shared with:
garden tuesday@sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party@an oregon cottage

Monday, July 30, 2012

Our Sunday Cafe, July 2012

These dinners have become simpler as the weather has warmed up. I have made a grilled flank steak two months running, it is a favorite cut of meat and great for a dining group.

These zucchini started the whole thing! Our market is full of them right now, fresh and crisp. I made 2 trays of seasoned grilled vegetables including zucchini, red onion and large mushroom.




Vegetables fresh and grilled were a large part of our dinner.






Fresh vegetables with Greek yogurt ranch. 




Fruit and a cheese plate were also enjoyed.



Marinated and grilled. Simple fare for a delicious dinner.
These beans are very good! Simple and this dish uses a "convenience" food, old fashioned canned Pork and Beans. You can find the recipe here., at Tasting Spoons.

Where was a second meat entree, grilled marinated chicken thighs, however I did not get a photo.......

We also had cobbler and vanilla ice cream for dessert.

I have to be honest about this cobbler, I had posted (and now deleted) this prior to tasting, my adaptation simply was not up to sharing.

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


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Corn Moussaka

This is a delicious casserole. It is also different, with the flavors of corn, tomato and cinnamon coming together harmoniously. I spotted this recipe in a magazine (Sunset ?) over 25 years ago. I have been making it ever since, I think your family will enjoy it as well. The only liberty I have taken with the recipe is the type of corn used as well as the amount.


Corn Moussaka
adapted from: Sunset Magazine
350F

corn, 2 -3 c frozen corn OR 1 - 2 15 oz canned corn, drained very well
1 pound lean ground beef
1 T flour
8 oz can tomato sauce
1/4 c water
1/2 t garlic salt
1/4 t rounded top cinnamon - 1/4 t flat top is not enough, but 1/2 t is too much

2 eggs
1 16 oz carton cottage cheese
1/3 c parmesan cheese

Spread corn in a 1 1/2 qt flat bottom oven proof casserole.


Brown beef, drain excess fat. Sprinkle with the flour cook an addition minute. Add garlic salt, cinnamon,  tomato sauce and water. Stir well and simmer until thick, about 10 minutes, spread over corn.







The garlic, tomato and cinnamon are absolutely delicious together. 


Bake 20 minutes











 


Beat eggs well, stir in cottage cheese and Parmesan cheese. Spread over meat mixture.


Bake 25 - 30 minutes or until topping is cooked. If desire, broil a minute or two to brown.


Serves 6

Recipe rating:  Oh Yes! (will make again)

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

this post is shared with:
yellow and pink saturday@how sweet the sound

Friday, July 27, 2012

Apple Butter in the Crockpot, 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 October 20, 2010.

I do not have my own apple tree, but granddaughter has one in her backyard. It was planted on her fifth birthday. At this time however, too immature to produce many apples.

Not enough for apple butter, that's for sure. Maybe in a few years, I can teach my granddaughter how to make apple butter from the apples on her apple tree. Until then.....

I love apple butter, it has many uses, besides being spread on hot toast.

Stir a couple of spoonful into pan drippings for a different way to de-glazed and make a quick and delicious pan sauce.

Mix it with cream cheese for a tasty dip.

Use it as a filling between cake layers.

Use it in place of some of the shortening/fat in a recipe.

There is more, and I am sure you get the idea.

So until I have a tree to work with............

I use to live in Yakima and I am familiar with Snokist. This company processes many of the Yakima grown apples. When I noticed these large cans at Costco, I knew my apple butter was only a crock pot away.


Start this in the evening and right after breakfast, you are ready to process the finished jars.


Crock Pot Apple Butter
adapted from Sage Trifle

1 # 10 can of water pack applesauce
2 c sugar
2 T cinnamon
1/8 t cloves
1/4 t allspice

Mix all ingredients in a large crock pot. Cover with a towel or screen, cook on low all night.











Place a small plate in the freezer, to use the next morning.

In the morning, this will have reduced down about 1/3 in volume. Place a small spoonful on the plate and let cool. If thick enough, turn off crock pot and prepare jars and a boiling water bath. If not let cook another hour or two, then prepare jars and water bath.

Jar up the butter, lid and cap, per manufacturers instructions. Process 12 minutes in a boiling water bath.

These jars are from the first batch, what is in the crock pot right now, 
will not be ready to jar up for about 12 - 15 hours.

Yield about 5 pints and hopefully some for now.

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

This post is shared with:
full plate thursday@Miz Helens

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wednesday's words.....

We have worms. These worms came all the way from Pennsylvania, through the US Mail service, priority shipping. Still they were on the road for several days. The bag was in a brown shipping box. Very simple packaging.

No food, or water, so they were hungry and thirsty, guaranteed.

And now without further ado, meet the worms.....

Honest they are in there, the instructions (also called an advisory) says so. Apparently the worms become very small with no food or water, so the first thing you do is, give them a drink of water. And so we did.

The gathered scraps in the box had become quite sorry looking, but I thought that in all probability, in the wild, those worms eat some sorry looking food anyway, so it would probably be OK.
They are hungry, so even sorry looking food would taste good, I told myself. Like the difference between hunger and appetite.

All of this information is to assure me that the "dirt" I received in the mail, does in fact contain worms. That shipping worms is a process still being learned, this order was packed by properly trained individuals and  that in two days, they will be plump and visible. Jim's Worm Farm says they guarantee it........

It can only get more exciting from here, don't you think? So stay tuned, Wednesdays will probably never be the same again!

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




Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Garden Tuesday, the one where I did different stuff!

The front door area was needing a little bit of decor, I did not want it to be crowded or look crowded. I finally settled on a red chair, and an umbrella stand because we use umbrellas in this part of the country all year long.....

Yes that is black paint, the previous tenants used this area to lay something down and spray paint it. Another chore to get done, remove the over sprayed paint.....

Remember the free rose I was given?

Yes this one, however it looks like this now. It must be the trellis.....




Next years this little jewel should simply take over that trellis and make it her own!
the roses are a lovely color too.

We had 4 pavers that were a different color, I decided to use them to make little jetties off the patio.

Each one will hold a planter, I have not decided if I will plant herbs or annuals for a splash of color. And now there is about 4 inches of grass to cut away that has grown over the edge of the patio. In a yard when you do one thing, it always leads to another!

All this clean up and digging has produced lots of stuff for composting.....

.....the right side was filled last weekend, this weekend produce this....

And we are not done yet, either we need to build another compost structure or learn a faster way to compost. Suggestions please? Anyone.....

And finally, remember this? A tree was growing up through the lace leaf maple, it was difficult to dig out since it was under the leaf canopy. But look now.....

the extra tree is gone, lower branches trimmed, some clean up around the edge and a little bit of whimsy thrown in!

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

this post is shared with:
garden tuesday@sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party@an oregon cottage








Sunday, July 22, 2012

Fried Mashed Potatoes, just like grandma's!

Thinking about my grandmother this morning, got me to remembering her frugal ways. So many of her ways are incorporated into my own life. Food was never wasted, period. One thing she would do for us when we stayed the night is make her fried mashed potatoes.

She called them "cakes" but the ingredients were simple, leftover mashed potatoes and an egg. The secret is in the cooking time, remember these are mashed potatoes and much stiffer when cold. It takes a while to brown up the cakes, so you must be patient.....we just happen to have some leftover potatoes from our pot roast dinner, so lets make some "cakes" for breakfast.



Like so many delicious old fashioned food,  these are not pretty, only tasty!

My grandma's potato cakes
by the seat of my pants
makes "a few!"

leftover mashed potatoes - about 1 1/2 cups
1 egg
salt and pepper


Place the potatoes in a bowl, add the egg and mix well. The easiest way to do this is with a potato masher.


Drop the potato mixture into a frying pan, gently flatten, season generously with salt and pepper.


Cook on medium heat for about 5-7 minutes, gently turn and continue cooking until firm to the touch, you want the cakes to cook all the way through, there is raw egg in the middle otherwise.

Serve with eggs and toast with homemade jam for a delicious breakfast!

Recipe rating:  Oh Yes! (will make again)

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

this post will be shared with:
see ya in the gumbo@Me Enplace
hearth and soul@premeditated leftovers
using leftovers @ carol's chatter

Friday, July 20, 2012

Sharing the view.......

A Friday view.....

breakfast is waiting!

Waiting for the package of worms to be delivered. 

The worm box is ready, the food is ready, and I am ready.......so come on big brown truck!

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



Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Chunky Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Triangles or Bars!

We are having rain today. Who knew that in July, we would be having rain? For the past 2 days I have worked outside, getting the backyard in shape, for some outdoor enjoyment. We once again have a patio to enjoy, and a compost structure for the upcoming garden plot. There is lots to do, when you move to a different home.....But today we are having rain, and there is a bit of a chill to the air, that only means one thing.....time to bake some cookies!

I am participating in this month's Taste and Create, and I have been matched with, NO REASON NEEDED. She is a busy lady! You might try viewing her skydiving photos, however I could not get the photos/blog post to show after the banner stopped.

One of the recipes that caught my eye, were these Chunky Peanut Butter Triangles. However I have taken the liberty to include all the major ingredients in the title, because peanut butter and chocolate are such a happy pair!


Chunky Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chop Triangles
adapted from:  NO REASON NEEDED
350 degree oven

note:  this was found in a Splenda cookbook, feel free to substitute Splenda for the listed sugar below.

1 1/2 c flour
1/2 t baking soda
3/4 c peanut butter
1/2 c butter
1/3 c sugar
1/3 c brown sugar
1 egg
1 t vanilla
1 large package chocolate chips OR 2 1/2 c chocolate chips


Combine flour and soda, set aside.


Cream peanut butter and butter together, add sugars, mix well.

Add egg and vanilla, mix until creamy.

Stir in the flour mixture until smooth and well mixed, stir in chocolate chips.






Dough is crumbly, but presses nicely into the pan.
 
Press into a prepared 9X13 pan.

Bake 20-25 minutes or until done in your oven.

Let cool, cut into squares (3 across and 7 along the side) and then into triangles, to make 42 pieces.

However I don't see me cutting these thick chewy bars in that pattern! Probably 4 across and 6 down the side for 24 bars. However you can decide, it is your own kitchen!

Recipe rating:  Oh Yes! (will make again)

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


this post is shared with:
hearth and soul@premeditated leftovers
full plate thursday@miz helen's