Ha! I bet you thought that I am going to educate you on people who refuse to accept the fact that this earth on which we live is a three dimensional sphere! Nope. I’m going to talk about travelers who are flat! Really, really flat.
Well, yes…I know. I have been remiss in posting over the past few weeks. But we have been up to our elbows in soap…200 pounds of the stuff. We are preparing for the Central Oklahoma Lavender and Herb Festival at the farm of Country Cottage Primatives on June 1st. If you would like to have a lovely day of classes, vendors and lavender picking, set aside this day and make your way to this beautiful place. Look for our canopy and be sure to introduce yourselves!! Oh! And we did have our April drawing and Janet Black of Weatherford, Oklahoma was the winner of the canning tool set. Thank you for all of the entries. Stay tuned for the next give away.
I have been working on this post for two days. That’s ridiculous. But I had it nearly finished yesterday, hit ‘save draft’ and instead of saving my draft, it got wiped out!! All of it!! There was some glitch that I have not figured out. It happened again this morning. I hit save again and it said, “You do not have permission to edit this document” and, “kerplooey!” everything was gone. I came very close to losing my normally pretty even temper with a shoe through the computer screen. But I didn’t and so third time is charm.
But back to Flat People…Facebook is awesome. There were so many people about whom I have wondered over the years, having lost touch with them for as many as 45 years. Facebook has put me in touch with those wonderful people, letting me see what they look like, what they are doing, what accomplishments they’ve made, their families and it has given me a chance to rekindle old relationships. One of those people, a former high school friend and classmate, Carol, contacted me and told me about a geography project in which her 8 year old granddaughter, Ali, was participating. The students were sending a paper doll, drawn by each student, out to as many people as they could find to be photographed at locations that would introduce the students to new and wonderful places. The doll’s name is Flat Stacy.
Mr. Fix-It and I volunteered to take Flat Stacy on our 2000 mile trip recently. It meant that we would stop along the way and take pictures of Flat Stacy in front of places of interest that we thought would be useful to the class. Now, there is nothing like watching the looks on people’s faces as a gray haired woman happily slaps a laminated, cut-out paper person that has been created by an 8 year old, up against some landmark to then step back and shoot pictures with a pretty nice camera. I figure that they wrote me off as some demented older person. But there WAS one place where a couple of young, college-age girls bounced up to ask, “That’s one of those flat people projects, isn’t it?! We did that when we were in school!” They hadn’t been out of school long enough to forget those kinds of things!! I do wonder, though, if they thought that I was somehow still in the third grade!!
Mr. Fix-It joined into the project with gusto. Normally, ready to drive without stopping until bladders are screaming for mercy, he would see a sign and say, “Heh! That looks like a good place for a Flat Stacy picture!” and we would detour from our designated route to take in a site, complete with pictures to prove it. I just love that man. Anyhow, I thought that I would share with you just a few of the many places that we visited on Flat Stacy’s behalf.
And Carol also sent me a recipe, to try, that her children, grandchildren and their friends brag about and can’t wait to eat when they are at her home. My granddaughter and I had a cooking day and tried these delicious treats so the recipe is posted below.
We stopped in Tupelo, Mississippi to visit the birthplace of Elvis Presley. Very impressive. Flat Stacy had her picture made with the “King” in front of the Tupelo City Hall.
Flat Stacy looked for the checkered flag at Talladega International Speedway in Alabama. I looked for Ricky Bobby.
In Newnan, Georgia, we found Flat Stacy’s store – or, at least it SAID it was her store! She was kinda dwarfed by the structure.
Outside of Wilmore, Kentucky, Flat Stacy had her picture made at Shaker Town, in front of a rock fence that was built before the Civil War.
Our little, long-haired dachshund, Ellie, was Flat Stacy’s traveling companion. Unfortunately, Ellie wasn’t feeling very good on this trip and when we got back and her to the vet, we were sad to find out that she is suffering from congestive heart failure. She is too young for that – just 8 years old. We are treating her with natural remedies and prescription medication to help her quality of life. We want to keep her around for a long time because she is such a joy in our life!
Near Mitchellville, Tennessee, Mr. Fix-It spotted these flat people who were just like Flat Stacy! In doing the research to find out about this sculpture, I found that the state of Tennessee has commissioned artists to do sculptures for each of the welcome stations. It just so happens that this one of the flat people was done by my former drawing professor at MTSU, Phillip Vanderweg! Small world.
Of course, we had to get a picture of Flat Stacy in Oklahoma and what better place than in front of the only working oil well in the United States that is located on the grounds of a capitol building. Our beautiful capitol building in Oklahoma City is in the background.
Those are just a few of the pictures that we took. What a fun way to make a trip! And according to Carol, Flat Stacy went as far as Afghanistan for Ali!
Here is Carol’s great cookie recipe for you to try. They are light, crisp and buttery.
1 cup butter
1 cup oil (I used coconut oil)
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, well beaten
4-5 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. vanilla
Now would be a good time to introduce our newest product: Bakewell Cream. I was actually introduced to Bakewell Cream way back in the 70′s in Maine but had not used it since because it is not available around here. Now I can have it!! Yay. It is the most wonderful baking Cream of Tartar that makes the most incredible biscuits. I have tossed baking powder and use the Bakewell Cream with soda and oh my….You can find it at our shopping page.
My granddaughter, Miss Peachy Pie, got her first cooking lesson, complete with her own “Li’l Cook” apron.” Typically, the batter wound up in her hair.
Cream butter and oil with sugar and eggs.
Sift flour, salt, soda and cream of tartar.
Stir into creamed mixture, add vanilla and mix well.
My granddaughter “helped” put the dough balls on the baking sheet. If you are wondering why I cut faces in pictures – after the photo of my mother got stolen and used for unsavory purposes, I have ceased to show the faces that can be photoshopped and misused!
Place small balls of dough on cookie sheet.
Flatten each with a small flat bottom glass dipped in sugar.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.
(Do not grease pan!)
Yep, they are TAAASTY! Miss Peachy Pie loved them.
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Posts Tagged ‘recipe’
1/3 cup butter
3 large eggs
1 cup live culture yogurt
1 tsp soda
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 cup of your favorite berry jam (I used strawberry)
1 cup chopped pecans
1 Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe white cake mix
Lemon Curd from Recipe (Best if made ahead of time and chilled)
1-8oz pkg cream cheese
1 stick of butter
Beat in 1 lb box of powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Cream the butter with a mixer and add eggs. Beat until smooth.
Add spices and blend well
Add jam and continue to beat
Add yogurt. Cream together with other ingredients
Add box of cake mix and beat well until smooth. Stir in nuts. Pour batter into cupcake papers that are supported in muffin tins or pour into a greased and floured 9 x 13 sheet cake pan. Bake at 350º for 20 – 25 minutes or until a knife or toothpick comes out clean.
While the cupcakes are warm, using a scoop or apple corer, core out a hole in the middle of each cupcake
Fill each hole with lemon curd that has been made from the linked recipe. Place in the refrigerator or a cool, dry place. Make Butter Cream Cheese Icing
Hi all. Haven’t been able to stand writing much lately. Writer’s block has reared its ugly head and then another issue just gave me more excuses. Most of you know that I have Graves and Hashimoto’s Diseases with the accompanying Thyroid Eye Disease (also known as TED). Lately, focusing on a computer screen for any amount of time has not been fun. I’ve tried. Best intentions and all that kinda thing. My eyes throb, burn and tear up and then, everybody wants to know what I’m upset about and what should send me into tears. Of course, assuring, “nothing,” doesn’t cut it and pretty soon, discussions of Prozac and other drugs of comotosity (is that a word?) become whispers behind my back where my “mom’s eye in the back of my head” is also throbbing, burning and tearing up. I then win the day and all involved relax as I pile ice onto my face, over a sleep mask, and I lay down on the couch to listen to the clickity clack of the Wheel of Fortune wheel. Ya know, something gets lost in that show when one can’t see the board and can only hear the ‘dings’ of the letters turning and the squeals of the contestants. Just not much brain stimulation there. And there’s no use looking because with the occassional double vision of TED, when a contestant buys a vowel, two show up side-by-side along with double consonents and the board looks like Russian! Last night, I asked Mr. Fix-It if he noticed the firelike flames of the headlights of oncoming traffic. He looked sideways at me like I was crazy and said that there were no firelike flames. Huh.
January is Thyroid Disease Awareness Month. Now, a year ago, I would have giggled and said, “Are you kidding? They have a month dedicated to the thyroid, of which nobody cares? Sheesh.” But things sure do change when you become one of the stories told by the countless number of people in all parts of the world who have been struck with these really aggravating autoimmune diseases. All of a sudden, you get this primal urge to wear a ribbon or get pledges and walk or something. You try all kinds of natural remedies and keep a journal of what works and what doesn’t work. I have to say that I have discovered that my Rosemary/Peppermint with Sage soap seems to sooth my painful eyes and keeps them from being so red. That’s pretty cool. Literally. But suffice it to say that one feels a new empathy for people who are struggling with diseases that are not necessarily life threatening but that are life altering. I went into Walmart awhile back and the checker was peering with difficulty at the price of my item. One eye was droopy and the other was terribly swollen and watery. I knew immediately that she had TED and I felt such a pain for her having to stand there, trying to see what wasn’t going to be easily seen. I wanted to just grab her to take her to a recliner for an ice pack and relief. I have been blessed. My eyes are not that bad yet. It is very possible that my day will come or it may not, but God has been gracious in allowing me just enough discomfort to keep me humble and not so serious a case so that it keeps me grateful. “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (II Corinthians 12:10) But I’m still kind of impatient about sitting in front of a computer screen!!
Many things have been happening over the past month…pretty exciting things, in fact. We have the privilege of welcoming Eric and Denyce and their wonderful site Breadtopia.com. They have decided to carry the Oklahoma Pastry Cloth™ at their Iowa business. Be sure to hop over and check out their site and their great baking blog. You will learn a lot! Then, the gift store, The Pink Pistol, recently opened in Tishomingo, Oklahoma by country music singer Miranda Lambert, is carrying our soaps packaged especially for them. Privately labeled for The Pink Pistol, the soaps have swarovski crystals centered on the ribbon that ties around the package of pastel tissue paper for a tidy gift with ‘bling’! We have been humming here, producing like Lucy and Ethel in the chocolate bon bon factory and just as organized!! (note my sarcasm)
So please accept my apology for the long absence. A combination of writer’s block, eye problems and sheer burnout have plagued this blogger granny. I’m thinking of getting a bottle of Vitameatavegamin.
In the interim, reader Lacey from Texas, sent a recipe that Mr. Fix-It and I really liked. It is very easy and very tasty and REALLY fast. The recipe actually calls for chicken thighs with the bone in, but since we especially like white meat, I used boneless chicken breasts, cut into chunks. I think that next time, I will cut the breasts into strips but you can use any part of the chicken you like!! Thank you, Lacey, for a new recipe!
1 1/2 lbs chicken thighs or boneless breasts
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/4 cup Maple syrup
1 Tablespoon Rice/rice wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
Line a baking dish with aluminum foil and preheat oven to 450º
In a bowl, mix mustard, maple syrup and vinegar until creamy.
Place chicken pieces into foil lined casserole dish and salt and pepper chicken
Pour the sauce mixture over the chicken and turn pieces to dredge in the sauce.
Bake at 450º for 40 minutes, basting with the sauce halfway through the cooking. For breast strips, it may not take 40 minutes until done.
Remove the chicken from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Serve portions, spooning sauce over the meat and sprinkling fresh rosemary leaves liberally over the pieces. This is an important addition!!
I served the chicken over rice – but heh – that’s just me. We eat so much rice, we should invest in a rice paddy!! Enjoy!!
I sure hope that everyone’s Christmas was beautiful, meaningful and filled with love. Our home was a little quieter this year, as much of the family was unable to make it due to weather, but those of us who were together had a lot of fun. The grandbaby was here and so all was well. Can’t go wrong with a one year old and her first real Christmas!!
The tree was bare underneath until presents magically appeared Christmas morning! They must have come by train.
I can’t resist waxing philosophical after this past holiday season. Shopping was a truly different experience this year. I don’t know if I have just become more observant or if my patience isn’t what it used to be or if I just naturally see the absurd in my surroundings, but I picked up on a phenomenom at the department stores that I just hadn’t noticed before. People don’t read signs. The best way to get an individual to do exactly what you don’t want them to do is to put up a sign and watch them do the exact opposite – like the lady who was trying to force a baby stroller, full of baby, onto an escalator beside the sign that stated, unequivically, “Absolutely no strollers on the escalator!!!”. It’s like people’s minds go into reading in a foreign language because they obviously don’t understand the English before them. “Je ne comprend pas.” “No comprende.” “Me no speaka de English.”
Now, I try very hard to be a patient line-stander. The reality of today’s society is that we stand in lines. We stand in lines at checkout stands. We stand in line for concert tickets. And we even purposely CHOOSE to stand in lines on Black Friday at 3:00 in the morning just to be first to make a dive for a Doggy Doo game where the child who gets three piles of dog poop on his shovel first, wins the game. I’m not sure if this teaches a child environmental responsibility or the best way to get worms, but it was certainly popular at Toys R Us. But I digress. I really do try to be a very patient line-stander. I use the time in line to pray for those people in front of me or for the checkout personnel. I browse over the titles of the magazines and make mental notes of Jennifer Aniston’s latest flame and what Vladimir Putin’s alien baby looks like. But on Christmas Eve afternoon, I’m ashamed to say, I kind of lost my patience – and I tapped my foot in frustration.
I needed one, measly item that I had forgotten in all of my weeks and weeks of careful planning and lists (yeah, right). A run into Walmart gave me that item – and cheaply I might add – and I decided to go through the express ‘self-checkout’ line because it said “express”. Now, express to me means “faster” or “quicker” or at least “moderately speedier than nonexpress”. It means that the normal person would recognize the word and take it to dictate the necessity to have just a few items. Oh no. People on Christmas Eve can’t read. I think that they read the word “express” and think that it gives them permission to express themselves about every, single item of the 300 in their basket as they swipe them across the barcode reader.
In the particular line in which I was standing, one such woman was at the stand with a buggy piled so high with purchases that she had to get a second buggy in which to place her finished bags because there was no room in the first buggy. There were 6 more people between me and her and these six people each had a maximum of 5 items. The first woman did not know how to use the scanner and contemplated each item, of her pile of approximately 400 things, to determine where in the world she was supposed to swipe for a price. She announced the price as there was final success and carefully moved to the next of her 600 items. The man in front of me held tightly to an ice scraper of which he must have been sorely in need because he tenaciously stood in this line with the optimism of Eeyore. He turned to me, rolled his eyes and said, “You would think that they would put ’10 Items or Less’ on the sign.” I thought to myself that if the word “Express” hadn’t been interpreted correctly, what made him think that this woman could count (with her basket heaping with 700 items)?!
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw that the self-checkout to my left and in front of me was miraculously void of all but one customer. I hated to do it to the young man in front of me, but I made a beeline for that stand, careful not to knock him to the ground in my escape. I was also careful not to look smug at my stroke of luck. The woman, who was checking out at that moment, pulled out her card and pressed, “Finish and Pay”, right under the sign that stated, “Credit card, Debit card or Cash Only”. She ran the red card through the reader and promptly got a “Read Error” flashing light. She contemplated the card and tried again. Same response. She turned to her daughter and said, “I guess it wants me to pay the balance first and then use the gift card.” Gift card? The sign didn’t say anything about a gift card. But then, it didn’t say anything about a check either which didn’t stop her from writing one and trying to force it into the cash recepticle of the machine. The check was spit back out and a voice screeched, “Please wait for assistance!!” 15 minutes later, the store clerk, after working on the machine with no resolution, and continually reprimanding the customer for attempting to use a gift card on the machine, flatly stated, “Just go to my stand and I’ll have to check you out there.” She promptly wiped out the entire order and left the lane open for me and my one item. I quickly paid, turned to look at the line of people which had formed behind me and then, as I headed toward the exit, I noticed the young man with his ice scraper still standing in line behind the same lady with the two baskets who was evidently working on item number 800.
I have a recipe for which my family stands in line. It is our traditional “New Year’s Day We Have To Have It To Watch Football Games” recipe. I always wind up making two batches – one before Christmas to give as gifts to neighbors and then one for munching. I have been making this for as long as I can remember and it is one of the recipes that you will find in my family cookbook at the shopping page. I really think that you will enjoy it if you like toffee popcorn and nuts crossed with Cracker Jacks. It is truly yummy. Oh, and my favorite popcorn to use in this is the Act II Butter Lovers brand. It takes 3 – 4 bags of popped corn to make a recipe. I pop it and then make sure to remove any unpopped kernels. This brand has no trans fats and quite a bit of the good fats.
Candied Popcorn and Nuts
5 Quarts freshly popped corn
1 cup salted cocktail peanuts
1 cup butter (you have to use the real thing!)
2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup traditional pancake syrup like Karo
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp butter flavoring (optional)
Variation: Use pecans or roasted almonds instead of peanuts
Preheat oven to 250º
In a very large bowl, place popcorn and nuts and toss
In a medium sauce pan, melt butter with brown sugar and syrup and bring to a boil.
Boil until the mixture reaches the soft ball stage. You can check this with a candy thermometer or by dropping a little of the syrup into a bowl of ice and water. Feel to see if the syrup forms a soft ball in the cold water.
When the soft ball stage is reached, remove the syrup from heat and stir in vanilla
And add the soda, stirring quickly. The soda will make the mixture start to bubble and turn to a foamy light tan color
Pour the mixture over the popcorn and nuts and then begin turning and mixing the popcorn and peanuts to coat
When all of the popcorn and nuts are coated, spread the mixture onto a large, buttered cookie sheet and bake in 250º oven for about an hour, stirring and turning about every 15 minutes to keep it from burning. When done, remove from oven and quickly transfer the hot popcorn by spatula to an airtight container. The popcorn will be a little sticky, but it will come off of the cookie sheet easily. It gets harder to remove as the popcorn candy begins to harden. Once the toffee coating has hardened, shake the popcorn to break it into individual pieces.
This is all that is left of the batch that I just made. Oh wait. No. I’m sorry. I just ate it!!
Just 5 days to go!! Don’t forget to comment to enter this month’s giveaway for the treats pictured above. Just in time for Christmas: Shortbread cookie mix and a set of cookie cutters to make a cookie Christmas tree!!
I told you in my last post that I would put up some “finger food” ideas for the holiday entertaining season and this is the next in that list. Hope you can use it!!
A long time ago, an employer took me and friends to a restaurant in Knoxville, Tennessee. It was quite an experience for a younger person who didn’t have two pennies to rub together. There were no prices on the menu and so I have no idea how much the meal cost. However, I’ll bet that the bill would be considered astronomical even today!
Appetizers were ordered first and I chowed down on the Crab Louis on crackers. I had never had caviar and made a pig of myself. As has always been my habit, I took mental notes of the tastes and the ingredients as the flavors slid over my taste buds. I have no clue what I had for dinner and dessert. I just remember the appetizers!
And of course, when I went back to the real world of the lowly, young wife of a farmer, I experimented until I created that appetizer to use for my own entertainment occassions. It may seem like a bit of work, but the neat thing is that you can make the sauce days ahead of time and just keep it in the frig where the longer it sits, the more the flavors combine. You can cook the crab ahead of time or you can use frozen claw meat or lump crab meat. Assembling the treat just takes a matter of minutes so it’s all in the planning! You will impress your guests and they will think that you are really posh. Do we use that word anymore???
For a lighter version, you can use light mayonnaise and the low-fat half and half. And if you think that I spent a bunch of money on caviar, think again! Shhhhhhhh. It was on the top shelf at Walmart with the canned oysters, canned shrimp and canned tuna!! That means that anyone can serve the “Toity” without it being so “Hoity”!!
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp heavy cream (or half and half)
2 Tbsp Heinz Chili Sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp shredded, fresh horseradish
2 Tbsp finely chopped green pepper
2 Tbsp finely chopped green onion
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
In a small mixing bowl, add mayonnaise
And chili sauce, worcestershire sauce and horseradish
Add chopped green pepper and green onions
Pour in 1 Tbsp lemon juice
Mix all ingredients together until sauce is smooth. Place in the refrigerator to cool. May be made several days ahead of time. This sauce is very good as a substitute for tartar sauce with fried or baked fish or shrimp.
Steam enough crab to make one cup of meat when cracked. For a quicker preparation, frozen lump or claw meat is acceptable too.
Shell the crab using kitchen shears and a nut pick.
Place crackers on a plate and put a small dollop of sauce in the center of each cracker.
Toss one tablespoon melted butter with the crab
Put a mound of crab onto the cracker and into the sauce.
Place another small dollop of sauce on top of the mound of crab
Add a small mound of caviar onto the sauce.
And there you have it. Tasty appetizers!!
I know. I know. Where have I been? Did I fall off of the earth? Did I get swallowed by a giant batch of soap? Did I get discovered by Food Network? (I wish!) While none of these scenarios is probable, the fact is that I had a variety of much less exciting happenstances occur at once. First, as I left you last time, I had a house full of teenage young men who stayed with us for 7 nights as they campaigned for our state representative. It was rather hectic here. But on top of that, my eye disease decided to rear its ugly head and I was having a hard time reading or typing for very long. It’s just no fun when you see two of everything!! And then – more company and more cooking. And then – two canning classes and a case of hives and more double vision. All in all, with excuses aside, it all boiled down to one main culprit: Writer’s block!!!!
Yep. My brain has been fried. I have not had one single thing to write about. I’d start, but the words wouldn’t come and when they did, there were two of each. Soooo, I gave up. I have now chilled, rested and used not just a few ice packs and I am back in business.
And speaking of business, we had a winner for our Fall Giveaway, reader and FaceBook fan, Sue Feely won two packages of our Frontier Fixin’s bread mix. Next week, right after Thanksgiving, a new giveaway will be introduced just in time for Christmas! So be watching.
With this being Thanksgiving week, a time for family, memories, gratitude and turkey, I thought that I would give you a way that I like to use my leftover turkey that is pretty tasty. The recipe originated from a cookbook that I’ve had for years and is evidently no longer in print, titled “Favorite Brandname Cookbook”. I tweaked the recipe for leftover turkey but use chicken as well and home canned chicken or turkey is really great in it. If you want to can your turkey after Thanksgiving and then use it later, this is a good way to use that, but straight off the bone is fine too. I like white meat in my recipes but both white and dark work well too. It’s all a matter of preference. In this tutorial, I am using chicken, but will be making it with turkey on Friday!! And just as a note, I use dehydrated celery, mushrooms and onions and they work great.
1 cup sliced carrots
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup chicken or turkey broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 pkg turkey gravy mix (if using turkey for the meat) mixed with 1 cup cold water
1 cup sour cream
3 cups cubed or shredded chicken or turkey
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 Tbsp. chopped green pepper
1 Tbsp. chopped pimento
1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese (sharp is good)
In a bowl, place the meat, either shredded or cubed. If using canned meat, it will shred.
Place veggies, minus the peppers and pimentos, into a saucepan with 1/4 cup chicken broth, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Add a little water if needed to keep from cooking dry.
Add sour cream to the meat
Add cream of chicken soup and turkey gravy mixed with 1 cup water to the meat and sour cream
Add Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper
Add remaining 1/4 cup chicken broth and mix all ingredients well
Pour the meat mixture into a casserole dish. I am using a Pampered Chef stoneware deep dish baker here. Set dish aside.
In a bowl, add flour, salt and baking powder and stir.
In a separate bowl, lightly beat eggs and milk together
Add cheese and peppers to the flour mixture and toss until the cheese is totally incorporated with the flour
Pour egg mixture in with the flour mixture and stir well
By spoonfuls, place the batter mixture in a ring around the outside top of the meat mixture in the casserole dish. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes at 350º until golden brown.
It’s pretty and it’s good! Serve hot with a salad and you have a meal!
(Don’t forget to comment to enter our newest giveaway for this heavy, heavy, marble and wooden rolling pin and package of a Made In Oklahoma mix to roll out! Winner will be announced Labor Day weekend.)
Those of you who have been reading this blog over the past four years – yes, y’all! Four years! – know that I am a little crazy. Well, not certifiable, just nutty. Sometimes, I wonder if God wired my brain differently from other people so that it operates just a tad off-the-wall. It just seems that I look at my situations, circumstances and just plain life with the oddest revelations. I can’t just say, “Oh! Look! Fresh corn is on sale!” No. I have to ponder the price, calculate how many ears it will take to fill 50 wide-mouthed pint jars, and, though it’s June, immediately plan who I will be inviting to Thanksgiving dinner in order to determine if 50 wide-mouthed jars of corn can meet the yellow vegetable requirement on the menu! And a simple act of compassion in nature of taking in an orphaned raccoon to bottle feed until it is old enough to make it in the wild on its own, turns into an emergency room visit with a leg broken in five places and a doctor who doesn’t believe I wasn’t up in a tree with the raccoon. OK. So who does that anyway?
So, this past weekend, I made Mr. Fix-It a pretty, darned good buttermilk pie, if I do say so myself. And the kitchen smelled heavenly. If you haven’t ever had a Buttermilk Pie, you HAVE to try it! According to Wikipedia, it was originally a British desert that became a standard here in the deep south. Evidently, it offered a sweet alternative to fruit pies when fruit was out of season. However, Wikipedia also said that you just don’t hear about these pies anymore. I don’t know what they are talking about, because Buttermilk Pie is served in restaurants around here, and Texans claim that, of course, their’s is the best there is! There is a drastic difference between a Buttermilk Pie and a Chess Pie as there is no corn syrup or corn meal in a Buttermilk Pie, and individual cooks like to add their own touches of extra nutmeg and cinnamon, or cloves, lemon extract and rind, or other various flavorings to this versatile custard pie. Anyway, I’m guessing you won’t be surprised that as I made my pie, rolling out the pastry, beating the eggs and such, even though I had no clue that this was a British confection, my brain had a 1960′s British Invasion, and I couldn’t stop singing the Beatles’ Uncle Albert song. You know – “so I had a cup of tea and a butter pie (you have to pronounce it ‘buttah’); the butter wouldn’t melt so I put it in the pie”. And I’m STILL singing it. ~Sigh~ Parts of the tune are hauntingly beautiful and the lyrics are harmless enough, although those boys must have had way too much pie as they came up with that song – or maybe something else. Here, you can click on the song so that it will rattle around in YOUR head for a week.
Here is my recipe for Buttermilk Pie. It’s a pretty ancient one. I sure hope you enjoy it as much as Mr. Fix-It. And as you munch on it, just contemplate what a special man he is to patiently endure my crazier side!!
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened (1 stick)
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 eggs beaten
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 9″ pie unbaked pie shell
variations: Add 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp ground cloves or
Add 1 tablespoon lemon extract and 1 tsp lemon zest
You can use any pie crust recipe. Of course, I use my recipe! I like my recipe because it has butter in it instead of just shortening. Flaky and buttery! Roll out your crust and place it in a 9″ pie tin. Of course, you CAN use a store bought pie crust..cough..cough.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the flour and mix further.
In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs.
Add the beaten eggs to the creamed butter and sugar mixture
Add the buttermilk and vanilla
Add the nutmeg. If you want to add cinnamon, cloves, more nutmeg or any other flavorings, you would do that here. Mix until well incorporated and creamy.
Pour the creamy custard into the pie shell. Dust the top of the custard with cinnamon. Bake in a 425º oven for 15 minutes and turn down to 350º to continue baking for 30-40 more minutes or until top is golden brown and center is firm, not liquid. It will jiggle a bit but won’t be sloshy. The center will solidify as it cools. Chill and serve cold, but some people like it at room temperature.
Serve with whipped cream and unhook your belt!!
(Don’t forget to comment to enter our newest giveaway for this heavy, heavy, marble and wooden rolling pin and package of a Made In Oklahoma mix to roll out! Winner will be announced Labor Day weekend.)
I’ve been sitting here, patiently twiddling my thumbs, having dutifully turned off all computers and the water heater due to a power outage this afternoon, that occurred without warning. I called the power company to alert them that we are without electricity and the woman laughed at me! She did. I asked if she had any idea how long this outage would last, and again, she laughed. Did I sound that funny? Or maybe she heard the terror in my voice as I assumed that she was hinting to me that we would never have electricity again?
Mr. Fix-It isn’t here this afternoon and so I am totally on my own. I am like Mrs. Ingles on the prairie, only with two dogs and two cats instead of children. And you can’t eat your dogs and cats any more than you can eat your children!!! How will we survive? I have already assessed my stock of deydrated food stuffs, mentally preparing what could be on the menu for the evening meal. I still have two quart jars of my homemade beef jerky that I have managed to hide from Mr. Fix-It and lots of veggies. I have water in the Berkey to boil and pour in with the veggies and meat to make soup and figure that could last us a few weeks. But it just dawned on me that we are under a burn ban so there will be no fire to boil the water. And it is getting stuffy in here. Never mind that the 115 degree days have broken. It has been 88º outside and who can live in 88º without air conditioning? I mean, really? Well, that’s all there is to it. We are all going to die. I remember the nice man who came to talk to us about a generator. We had all chuckled that if we invested that much money into something, we would end up never needing it. That is how Murphy’s Law works, you know. We didn’t buy one. Now it is payback. No generator – no electricity. I can’t even get the car out of the garage because the door is electric and HEAVY and I haven’t competed with Olympic heavy-weight lifters in some time now. And I have no water! Ack. The well pump is not working. All I have is what is in the Berkey. I have to conserve and I feel like it’s been weeks since I had a drink of water. My tongue is sticking to the roof of my mouth. This is rough.
Oh wait. Never mind. The lights just came on. Yep! And water is coming out of the faucets. I’m tellin’ you. That was the longest ordeal! The electricity was off, like…let’s see…hmm…an hour and a half? Really? Huh. I thought it was weeks. You know, you just lose all track of time when you are having to rough it.
OK. So I’m being silly. The fact of the matter is that Mr. Fix-It is looking into a generator and I’m thinking this episode will give him a little extra boost toward that purchase! We lose electricity a lot in Oklahoma. And this has given more pause for thought on our water situation, as well. A hand pump would be a handy addition to our well system or a windmill with a tank. We’ll have to think about that too. We all need to be thinking about ways that we can live more sustainably without depending so much on outside forces. And trust me, two quarts of beef jerky won’t cut it!!
This kind of thinking always sends my tastebuds to grilling out. Unfortunately, we can’t do that right now. Too dangerous with a chance of a grass fire. But it hasn’t been that long ago that we weren’t under a burn ban and I tried a meat marinade that Mr. Fix-It found online that is just to die for. He said that he found it at American’s Test Kitchen. It is wonderful and unique and doesn’t take much time. Try this out. I promise that you that you will be hugging yourself and saying, “Who needs a Steak House??!”
So, here’s hoping that you have electricity all the days of your life…and that you will be well-prepared just in case you don’t!!
Warm-Spiced Parsley Marinade with Ginger
1/2 cup (packed) fresh parsley leaves
1 jalapeno chile pepper, seeded and chopped course
1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped course
3 medium cloves garlic, peeled
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/s cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
3 or 4 one inch to one and a half inch thick steaks, preferably New York Strip, Ribeye, Filets or Sirloin
Place first 10 ingredients into a food processor or blender
Process until all ingredients are well-blended and fine
For Kabobs, trim all fat from steaks and cut into 1″ cubes. Sprinkle with tenderizer. Or, leave steaks whole and sprinkle with tenderizer.
Place steaks or cubes into a container that has a tight lid and add marinade from the food processor. Seal with lid.
Toss until all cubes or steaks are coated with the marinade. Place in the refrigerator, covered, from 4 up to 24 hours. I did mine overnight and until the next evening – probably 18 hours.
For kabobs, on skewers, alternate meat with pineapple, sweet onions, green pepper or you can also add mushrooms and parboiled new potatoes.
Place steaks or kabobs on a hot fire. Coals should be gray, glowing red. And these are now my instructions about how we cook a steak. Sear one side of the meat until browned and quickly turn to the other side. Immediately cover the grill with lid and allow steaks or kabobs to cook, undisturbed for 7 minutes for medium-well, 6 minutes for medium and 5 minutes for medium rare.
Immediately remove steaks or kabobs to a platter and cover with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes.
I know. I know. I’m behind. I can’t seem to catch myself coming or going. But I did manage to catch a car!! And it didn’t involve one of those icky salesmen either. We got a normal, honest one.
For those of you who follow the blog, you know that I have been on a frustrating search for a hunk of metal with four wheels that doesn’t take $100 to fill the gas tank and that uses what IS put in its tank, sparingly. I have driven one model after another, enamored with the outsides, only to find doors that felt like aluminum foil and innards like a bumper car. And then I discovered the Nissan Versa Hatchback and fell in love. It is heavy for a car its size, is very roomy inside (seats 5 people), actually has pep and gets 33 mpg highway miles (Mr. Fix-It and I checked it). I splurged and got fancy alloy wheels today and so now I really look Up-Town…well, as Up-Town as a platinum haired (we don’t say ‘gray’ around here) woman can look. I love the back end space where there is plenty of room to haul Oklahoma Pastry Cloth™ gift baskets for delivery. Yep. I’m a happy camper. Oh yes, and I found out today, that it actually stays on the highway when we have our 40 mph winds sweeping down the plains!!
And so, between finding a car, filling orders and playing with my grandbaby, time has slipped away and I all of a sudden realized that this is Thursday. Oh no!! I’ve been seriously blogless this week. Of course, the March Bread Pans Giveaway is still ongoing, so be sure to leave comments to enter. And it appears that quite a number of people tried the new bread recipe posted last week and found it as delightful as Mr. Fix-It and I did.
Therefore, I thought I’d show you one of the ways that I use the French bread from my last post which just tickles Mr. Fix-It to death. I make my own French Onion Soup recipe and top it with a toasted piece of this yummy bread, melted Swiss Cheese over that and serve it piping hot. Here is my recipe for French Onion soup. (And you must remember that I am a dump cook so I measured what I was dumping for you. You can increase amounts according to the size of your family)
2 tbsp real, honest to goodness (not the margarine or yogurt stuff) butter
2 tbsp flour
1/2 cup cool water
1 medium onion sliced into thin rings
1 clove garlic finely minced or pressed
4 cups beef broth or 4 cups water and 4 beef bouillon cubes
Melt butter in a 2 quart sauce pan over medium high heat
Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are tender
Add two tbsp flour and stir to make a roue
Add 1/2 cup cool water, stirring quickly to form a thick gravy
Add beef broth and stir until thoroughly mixed.
Stir soup occassionally as it simmers at a low boil for 30 minutes, adding water or broth if liquid reduces
Take 4 slices of crusty french bread and toast lightly. May butter if you wish.
Pour soup into bowls that have been placed on a cookie sheet.
Place bread slices on top of the soup and top with slices of Swiss cheese. Place the cookie sheet and bowls into the oven on broil. Broil until cheese is bubbly.
Garnish with parsley and serve hot with a salad or fruit. Yum!!