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September 25, 2011

A Quiet Sunday


"The grass withers and the flowers fade,
but the word of our God stands forever."

Isaiah 40:8

September 24, 2011

Having Fun with AJ

    Go look at the post from January 16, 2011
Here's the same little boy
eight months later!


AJ is honestly, one of the most happy
babies I've had the privilege of loving!


How can anyone resist baby feet!?!
They have yet to walk in the grass, run along a beach,
jump in mud puddles, crunch the fall leaves as he walks,
 or make snow angels in the snow!


He is one happy little boy!
I wonder what wonderful things are
in store for him as he grows up?

September 16, 2011

A Crockpot Kinda Day

It's a rainy day....   a day with appointments to keep
and time to save! A perfect day to try one tried and true
and a brand new (to me) recipe....Have you ever made
Crockpot Lasagna?
No, well me either until today.

Ingredient list:
Spagetti sauce  (I used one can Hunt's, one jar of
home made and 1 can of paste)
Sweet sausage & grond beef
Package of frozen cheese ravioli
Fresh baby spinach  (optional)
Shredded cheese 
Crock Pot
(size depending on quantity you want to make!)

Directions:
Cook the sweet sausage and ground beef then
add the sauce to make a nice thick spagetti sauce. 
(I also added about 2 TBsp of my frozen pesto for added flavor)
I sprayed the inside of the crockpot with an
olive oil spray to keep things from sticking...
this is totally optional.

Put a little bit of sauce on the bottom then start layering:
frozen ravioli  (enough to cover the sauce)
a little fresh spinach
a little shredded cheese
top with sauce
Repeat until you've used up your ingredients... top with cheese!
Turn the crock pot on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 4.
Serve hot with garlic bread... DELICIOUS!

Now for desert, how about a little  APPLE CRISP
with vanilla ice cream.... yummy!! 
 I can hardly wait to come home and smell this all cooking!

Peel and cut up 6-8 good sized apples 
(enough for 6-8 cups) put into a large bowl add
3/4 Cup brown sugar
1/2 Cup flour
2TBsp water
1 Cup oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 TBsp butter   (cut up)
Mix all of this together and put into a 4 quart crock pot
(Previously sprayed with olive oil so it won't stick).
Cook on low for a few hours!! 


Seriously, most crock pot recipes are very forgiving... 
 if you cook it a LITTLE bit longer or
shorter length of time it will be ok.
You can also USUALLY cook on high for
almost half of the time.



September 13, 2011

Corn

My hands are tired from all the picking,
husking & cutting of corn! BUT... thinking
about the rewards of eating yummy fresh-tasting
corn during the cold winter months
make it all worth it!

I picked three rows of corn and blanched the ears about
8 at a time (roughly 6-8 minutes in boiling water,
followed by immersing the ears in ICE COLD
water to end the cooking). The ears fit into a
medium sized laundry basket and the cut
off kernels fit into two large bowls
 and a 9X13 baking pan!

I packaged the corn in quart and gallon sized
freezer bags... the larger bags will be perfect for
corn chowder or shepard's pie and
 other yummy recipes!

 Roughly, 58 cups of corn all neatly packaged
and ready for the freezer!

Corn stalks cut down and ready to go
feed the pigs!

This has been shared on Healthy 2Day Wednesdays
and Simple Lives Thursday!

September 7, 2011

Recipes

I have one of my grandmother's cookbooks. It isn't too old...  a copyright of 1946, but there are some 'interesting' foods you can learn to cook such as roasted 'squirrel or opposum'!

I can't say I've tried these recipes, but I have read some of them! Old cookbooks are a lot like history books. You can learn about the culture through the foods they ate (or that was common for that generation). I've read about rendering fat... that still comes in handy when butchering pigs!


Honestly, I cannot picture my grandmother preparing some of these things, but you just never know. She did what needed to be done to feed her family of six.

I did come across a couple of notes that my grandfather had written tucked in the cookbook! One was a score card for a game they had played and on another he was figuring the cost of gas! Can you remember when gas was 14.9 cents per gallon! These are treasures!


I wish I had more of her hand written recipes... but I do have this book, one hand written recipe and a fews recipes of hers written by my mom, so that's ok! One of her recipe follows....

Put N' Put  
One of my childhood favorites!

The recipe name was given
because you put and put and put
ingredients repetitively
in to the pot, right up to the top!


The idea is to layer the contents: 

bottom layer:
cut up stew beef or chicken
or meat of your choice (not cooked)

then a layer of cut up:
potatoes
carrots
onions
a layer of  'dumplings'
then sprinkle with salt & pepper

(Basically the dumplings are a 1 1/2C flour,  3/4 tsp salt,
3 TBsp shortnening, 3/4C water or milk. Mix dough then
rolled out and cut into strips or rectangles.)

Then start layering again:
meat, potatoes, carrots, onions,
dumpling, then salt & pepper. 

Finish layering the ingredients in your
soup pot and then fill it with water.

Cook this on low till the veggies are
soft and the meat is tender.

The dumplings will thicken and the water will
become a yummy broth!

Ahhh, the kitchen will smell delicious (and more
so if you've made bread or dinner rolls to go with it!)

These are things childhood memories are made of!

September 3, 2011

Applesauce

I LOVE THIS TIME OF YEAR!
I love the smells, the cooler night air,
the beauty and bounty of the garden in full growth,
the leaves just starting to turn, ahhhh... 
don't you just LOVE IT TOO!


My husband brought in a 4 1/2 gallon pail of field apples!
(My definition: apples picked from a tree that was not
sprayed or cared for like those in an orchard!)
It's applesauce time!
Applesauce is SOOOO EASY to make and store!
Simply cut up the apples.
No need to peel or seed them.


 Add a little bit of water to the pot and start
cooking over low to medium heat. The apples
will soften enough to mash with a potato masher
and stir around with a big spoon.
 Next, I use my FAVORITE TOOL...  the Foley Food Mill
to take out the seeds, stems & peels and into the bowl
goes smooth and delicious sauce! (It is wonderful to use
when making spaghetti sauce too!)
Back into the pot and add a little sugar (personal taste here)
add some cinnamon if you want to (I don't) and heat it back
up to boiling. Put into pints or quarts and water bath
the jars for 20 minutes!!
Aren't these beautiful!!
4 1/2 gallon bucket = 15 pints of sauce!
I love the way the skins make the
sauce pretty in pink!
(Applesauce is also EASY to freeze!
If you don't want to can it, simle put the finished
sauce into freezer bags or containers after it
has cooled down, seal and freeze!)

IT IS YUMMY EITHER WAY!
PS. If you want to make apple jelly too, you can
peel the apples before cooking. THEN after the
sauce is made, boil down the peelings and hang
them up in cheese cloth or in a NEW white pillowcase.

Use the juices to make jelly!
The jelly has an awesome flavor too!

This post was shared on Healthy 2Day Wednesdays
and Simple Lives Thursday !

September 1, 2011