Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Hey!  I tried the "recipe search" feature over on the right side & it really worked!  I typed in "pumpkin" and got Judy's recipes for pumpkin and pumkin cookies and my post with the 100 pumpkin recipes!  I'm so excited!  (OK, I don't get out much!)

Monday, October 18, 2010

Great Pumpkin Cookies

Taken of course from the Peanuts Cookbook~which we had as kids and I was lucky enough to find again at a rummage a few years ago!

1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup butte (or shortening)
2 eggs
16 oz. canned pumkin (or fresh prepared!)
2 3/4 cups flour, sifted
1 TABLESPOON baking powder
1 1/2 teas. cinnamon
3/4 teas. nutmeg
1/2 teas. salt
1/2 teas. ginger
1 cup raisins (or more if you like!)
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat the oven to 400. Mix sugar, butter, eggs and pumpkin thoroughly in a large bowl. Sift dry ingredients and add to pumpkin mixture. Blend well. Add raisins and pecans. Drop batter by teaspoonsful on ungreased baking sheets. Bake 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and liff off with a pancake turner. Makes about 6 dozen. It's a great snack while you're waiting for the 'Great Pumpkin'.

Fry Bread

Now know that Ann doesn't like it but my family does and tonight Leah helped make it! My favorite mix is: Wooden Knife (www.woodenknife.com) but here are 2 other recipes. I've made them both and like them.

Basically you make the dough:

Then you pull it flat (or you can roll it, but it's fry bread and suppsed to look funky) and drop it into hot oil:

Then get it to the table and try to get yourself there quick so you actually get some!

The easy recipe:

1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/3 cups warm water

Mix the dry ingredients together. Add warm water and knead until dough is soft but not sticky (depending on the say, you might have to add a little more flour). Let rest for 10 minutes. Stretch and pat dough until thin. Tear off one pice at time, you can poke a hole in the middle and drop into a pan of hot oil or lard. Brown on both sides. Serve hot or warm. You can top it with butter, honey, jam, syrup or use as a base for a sandwich. Or lightly salt it and eat plain!

Navajo Fry Bread (this has dry milk powder so it's a little richer)

(makes roughly 3- 8" rounds or as many blobs as you want)

2 cups flour
1/2 cup dry milk solids (powder)
2 teasppons double acting baking powder
1/2 teas. salt
2 tablespoons lard or vegetable shortening
1/2 cup water

Combine the dry ingredeints in a deep bowl. Add the 2 tablespoons lard/shortening and, with your fingers, rub the flour and fat together until the mixture resembles flakes of course meal. Pour in the water and toss the ingredients together until the dough can be gathered into a ball. Drape the bowl with a towel and let the dough rest for about 2 hours.
After the resting period, cut the dough into three equal pieces. The, on a lightly floured board, roll each piece into a rough circle about 8" in diameter and 1/4" thick. With a small knife, cut two 4-5" long parallel slits completely through the dough down the center, spacing the slits about 1" apart.
Heat the oil or lard until very hot but not smoking (about 1"deep) Fry the breads one at a time about 2 minutes on each side until puffed, crispy and browned. Drain on paper towels and serve warm.

Its Pumpkin Time

OK, now that we've all gone and cooked our own pumpkin, like Judy says to, its time to figure out what to do with it all.

I don't know about you, but I'm really not all that crazy about pumkin pie.  However, I like pumpkin flavor in a lot of other stuff.  This weekend, I made "pumpkin cake."  I took a yellow cake mix, prepared according to the directions.  While mixing, I added a can of pumpkin (about 2 cups) and about 2 tsps. of pumpkin pie spice.  Super simple, super easy.  Great with cream cheese icing.

To get you started on your way, here's 100 ways to cook with pumpkin, courtesy of EndlessSimmer.com

Since there's so many, if you make some, come back here & let us know how it turned out!

Bon Apetit!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Chicken Normandy

This recipe came from Simply Recipes, which I tweaked a little, where indicated.  It was wonderful.  Make this now.  It will make you very happy.  I promise.

It was so good I forgot to take pictures.  Then it was gone.  All gone. 


4 Tbsp butter (always a good way to start)

2 cooking apples (I used Granny Smith), cored and sliced into wedges (I left the peel on, but you don't have to.)
8 chicken thighs (These are really cheap, so that's why I used them, but you could use any type of chicken you want.  This is America, after all)

6 slices of bacon, diced (This was Matthew's suggestion, not in the original recipe.  Brought a tear to my eye.  That's my boy!)

Salt & pepper

1 large onion, peeled, sliced

1/2 cup brandy (apple brandy or Calvados if you have it -- I didn't)  (And, you could totally skip this and just use a little more cider).

1 cup apple cider (the cloudy type) (The recipe called for 2 cups, but I thought that was too much)

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 cup heavy cream cream


1. Sprinkle salt over the chicken pieces and let sit for 20 minutes at room temperature.

2. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Heat 2 Tbsp of the butter in a large, oven-proof sauté pan over medium heat. Add the apple slices and sauté until they turn a little brown around the edges, turning occasionally. Sprinkle the apple slices with a little salt. Set aside on paper towels to drain.

3. Place the chicken pieces in the sauté pan, skin side down. Add the remaining 2 Tbsp of butter. Fry until golden, about 3-5 minutes on medium to medium-high heat on each side. Remove from pan and set aside.  (Here's where I cheated.  I actually grilled my chicken the day before, and warmed it in the over while I made the sauce).

4. Increase the heat to medium-high.  Saute the diced bacon until a little crispy.  (I used the pre-cooked, so there wasn't a lot of grease.  If you're using raw bacon, you may need to take out some of the grease). Add the onions in an even layer to cover the pan.  Sauté the onions, stirring occasionally, until they just begin to brown, about 5-8 minutes.

5. Add the brandy to the pan, if using. Using a wooden spoon, scrape any remaining browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Let the brandy boil until it has reduced by about half. Add the cider and bring it to a boil.

6. Sprinkle in the thyme. Add just a pinch of salt to the cider. Arrange the chicken in the pan so the skin faces up and is not submerged by the cider-brandy mixture. Place in the oven and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes.  (Unless you used my method.  Then just place the warmed pieces into the sauce and let simmer for a few minutes.)

7. Remove the pan from the oven. Remove the chicken pieces from the pan and set aside. Place the pan back on a stovetop burner on high heat. Add the apples and boil down the sauce by half.

8. When the sauce reduces to the point where it's a little syrupy, add the cream and turn down the heat. Taste for salt and add some if needed.

To serve, spoon some apples and onions on the plate, top with sauce and a piece of chicken.
Serves 4.

Did I mention how good this was?  I think I liked the last of the sauce off the plate.
Bon Apetit!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Anyone else having problems?

This @#!$@ thing won't let me sign in for purposes of leaving comments.  Anyone else having this problem?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The BEST Apple Crisp

Mom used to make this and it's the only one I would kill for~others are okay but this one is YUMOLA!

Thank You Betty Crocker!

4-5 cups sliced, pared, and cored baking apples of your choice (about 6 medium)
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 nutmeg
1/3 cup soft butter

Heat oven to 375 (quick mod. according to Betty, whatever THAT is!). Place sliced appls in greased square pan, 8x8x2" or a baking dish, 10x6x1 1/2" or 1 1/2 qt. baking dish. Blend remaining ingredients until mixture is crumbly. Spread over apples. Bake 30-35 minutes or until apples are tender and topping is golden brown. Serve warm with cream, ice cream or whipped cream.

Okay, that's the recipe but what I do is fill the bottom of a 9x13" pan with apples about 2" deep. Then I double the toppping recipe and bake as above. I usually eat it right out of the pan too. Why get a plate dirty! And sometimes I even tell the kids that I made it too!

Bon Apetite!

Don't Try This At Home

Originally scheduled for this spot was a beautiful photo array of how to make creamy cauliflower and leek soup.

I cut up a whole cauliflower, 3 leeks (white part only) and put it in my crock pot with home made chicken stock, & lots of salt & pepper.  I cooked it on low overnight, planning to puree it this morning, add heavy cream and spices (hot sauce, nutmeg & cumin) and take it for my lunch today.

About 5 a.m., I awoke to the most horrible smell.  Upon entering my kitchen, I saw what looked to be a crock pot full of toxic waste.  Smelled worse.  The leeks were burnt.  The cauliflower was the color of old leather.  Matthew came upstairs and promptly gagged.

Where did I go wrong?  It seemed like such a good idea at the time.......

On a side note, this is an actual quote from Matthew Tuesday night in the produce aisle of the grocery store:  "MOM!  Look! They have bags of broccoli and cauliflower already cut up & mixed together!  Can we get some?"  I thought the old lady at the apple bin was going to have a stroke.  BTW,  he won't eat Twinkies..........

Bon Apetit!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

How to 'make pumpkin' for pie

Okay, here's what we did:

1) Went to get pumpkins~both for pie and for carving, after all, Halloween is coming very soon!

Then we took them home, washed the pie pumpkins, cut them in half and seeded them.

We then baked them at 350 for between 45 minutes to 1 hour and 15 minutes depending on the size. We could tell when they were done whn a knife poked in them went in easily. We then let them cool, and with spoons, scooped out the guts and put them in a bowl. Then we mashed them with the hand mixer till they were smooth.

The last step was to put them through a sieve or in our case this strainer to drain the excess moisture out.

As most recipes call for 2 cup measures of pumpkin, we put them, in 2 cup increments, in freezer bags and froze. Haven't had time to actually make a pie but we'll add it to the comments when we do and let you know how it worked out!