Sunday, June 29, 2008
My garden has taken off these past few weeks. It seemed liked it never would grow there for awhile. We just picked our first ear of corn this morning. How exciting! I had not tried to grow corn before. I have early memories of my grandma having a huge garden. There were rows of corn, peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, fruit trees, melons and the like. She would then can her bounty and we would be able to enjoy her garden all year round. I wished I had learned more about gardening and preserving from her. She had a stroke when I was a young girl and wasn't able to be very active after that. I pretty much just wing it when it comes to gardening. I plant and it grows or not. I don't use any pesticides and pretty much just let it do its thing. This year we will have pumpkins, melons, peppers, too much zucchini, and of course tomatoes. I live off of fresh tomatoes during the summer. This past year I started really trying to eat only seasonal vegetables and fruits. We did okay for the most part. I just had my first tomato of the season last week and boy was it delicious. I look forward to more bounty this summer. My goal is to have a potager, a year round garden. I want to try to have more control on where my families food comes from and what is in it.
Friday, June 20, 2008
I know this is bad. I really meant to take a picture of our dinner tonight. After I served my family, we sat down to eat and it was so good that I forgot to take the pictures. I remembered as I was wiping my mouth. Here is what you missed, Pioneer Woman's beef brisket, home fries, garden green beans, watermelon and carrots. It was sooooo good! Hubby wants what little leftover there is tomorrow with his eggs (he has to lay claim to the food or the boys will get it). I have never cooked a brisket before but after reading PW's recipe, I thought it looked easy enough for me to try. I also like that I can get more meals off the brisket. With the way the economy and gas is, I need to try to stretch our meals if I can. I bet the brisket would be great in enchiladas, as a hash, with scrambled eggs or as a sandwich. PW even has a recipe for brisket nachos. YUM! If you are wanting a low calorie, low cholesterol or low fat recipe, you might want to keep on looking. Her recipes kinda remind me of Paula Deen, where bacon fat and butter rule!
Just so you know, I am a huge fan of Pioneer Woman. If you don't read her blog here it is. She is hysterical! I came upon her blog about 3 months ago and became hooked. She is one of the few blogs I check daily. She was a city gal who upped and married a country rancher (I guess that's redundant, since a rancher is in the country) and she writes about her experiences living in the middle of nowhere and learning to live the cowboy or rather the cowgirl life. She is homeschooling her four kids and writes about her life, cooking, her homestead and photography. She even has her love story on her website call "Black heels to Tractor Wheels". I stayed up one evening past midnight reading her story. I know, I know, I need to get a life! Anywho, check out her site, you will get a good laugh and I know you will come back again and again.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
This was dinner tonight. It was really good. I made my version of a Hawaiian fried rice. I have made it many times before, but this time I used a new sausage. I was at the store last week and came across this new sausage from Aidells. It was pineapple and bacon chicken sausage. I know it sounds weird, but it was really good. I thought it would taste great in my fried rice. I usually make this rice with linguica and it gives it a nice kick, but I didn't have any in the house. But, isn't that what fried rice is all about, use what you have. So enjoy, I hope you like the recipe as much and my family does.
Hawaiian Fried Rice
4 cups of cooked rice, cooled completely
3 strips of bacon, chopped
2 links of sausage, chopped ( use what you like i.e., linguica, Italian sausage, chicken sausage)
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
3 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
1/2 carrot, peeled and diced
Put bacon and sausage into large skillet and cook over medium heat until bacon is crisp and sausage is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add carrots and cooked until tender crisp, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium high, add rice and stir fry vigorously to prevent sticking, until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add oyster sauce and soy sauce and mix well. Add 2/3 of the scallions and continue to stir fry until all ingredients are heated through, about 2 minutes more. Top with remaining scallions and serve.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Carrot Cake Cookies (adapted from Martha Stewart)
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1 1/2 cups finely grated carrots (about 3 large carrots)1 cup raisins
Cream Cheese frosting
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine sugars and butter, and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and beat on medium speed until well combined.
2. In a large bowl, sift together flour baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg; stir to combine. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture; mix on low speed until just blended. Mix in oats, carrots, ginger and raisins. Chill until firm, at least 1 hour.
3. Shape 1 tablespoon of dough into a ball and place on prepared baking sheets, 2 inches apart.
4. Bake until set, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Repeat baking process with remaining dough. Once cooled completely, use an offset spatula to spread about 2 teaspoons of cream cheese frosting onto a cookie. Sandwich together with a second cookie. Repeat with remaining cookies. Store in an airtight container up to 3 days in the refrigerator.
Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Place cream cheese in a medium mixing bowl. Using a rubber spatula, beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually add butter, and continue beating until smooth and well blended. Add in confectioners' sugar, and continue beating until smooth. Add vanilla, and stir to combine.
Friday, June 6, 2008
This has been a good school year for O. It's hard to believe that he will be in first grade.