Archive for January, 2011

A Couple of Pies

January 31, 2011

Okay….so it’s 2 pecan pies…we’ve been here done this….big deal.  Oh, but I beg to differ.  The one closest to you is a regular pecan pie from a previous post.  It’s going to Oregon with Rex’s brother Dean.  As I was about the slam the trusty Betty Crocker cook book shut, out popped a different recipe.  A yummy nummy recipe.  A crunchy chocolatey delight.

Chocolate Brownie Pie

2 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted

2 tbsp butter, melted

3 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup corn syrup (original recipe says dark, I used white)

1 cup pecans

Mix all together and pour into unbaked pie shell.  Bake at 375 for 40 to 50 minutes or until set.  This pie is enjoyable warm or cold.  Two kinds of pie, right??

Told ya it was yummy!!!!


Pickup, Pieces, Parts and Pickled Beans

January 30, 2011

Meet Peebles…My Honey’s pride and joy.  She will be with us forever.  We are done with the new stuff and now have vehicles a person can actually work on.  She is about the third one like this that I have had and I lost count at how many of these my Honey has had of this body style.  It’s a bit like going home when you jump in and drive.

My honey had decided to put a 4BT and new tranny in her.  A 4BT is a baby Cummins diesel engine.  Supposedly she will get 20MPG, but who knows.  He will have to drive her for the rest of his life to make up for the cost of this “little” project, but who cares.  It makes him happy.  Having and working on older vehicles is a disease……a very costly disease and I don’t think there is a cure.  I have a tad bit of the same disease my self, but I really think there are alot worse things in the world to keep one occupied.  If you or someone you know is interested here is the link to his thread on a Ford forum.  I will continue with updates once in awhile, but he keeps his thread up to date and alot more involved.×4-swb-cummins-4bt-build.html

At any rate, took a road trip in the fog to Idaho Falls and got him an engine.  We stopped at Michaels.  I was looking for some texture paint for a project for WyoNella, but apparently Duncan ceramic paints are not to be found in this part of the country.  One more place to check in Twin Falls and then…oh gee, a road trip to Portland.  We also stopped at a junk store in Shelley.  I found a matching tiki glass from Harrahs in South Lake Tahoe that was in my Mother’s things.  More on that later.

By the time we got home it was time to start thinking about dinner.  Sliders would work and I grabbed a jar of pickles beans that I had made at sometime this summer when I had “the over abundant garden stare” going on.  I had frozen all the green and yellow beans we could use, given alot away and still had plenty.  I was glancing through an old Ball canning book and found a recipe I could adapt with what I had on hand.

Pickled Beans

2 lbs. trimmed green beans

1 tsp dill weed

1 tsp dill seed

1 tsp cayenne pepper

2 1/2 cups white vinegar

2 1/2 cups water

1/4 cup sea salt

2 or more cloves of garlic

Trim beans lengthwise to fit in your jars.  Bring water, vinegar and salt to a boil.  Add garlic and 1/4 tsp of each spice to each jar.  Cover with hot liquid, seal and process in boiling water bath for 10 mins.  Makes 4 pints.

These were a BIG hit with family and friends.  We like them all the time.  They have found their way into Leon’s Famous Bloody Marys, the juice gets drank straight and fights have nearly erupted over the garlic cloves.  So I solved that problem by grabbing a bag of already peeled and cleaned garlic cloves at COSTCO and pickling them in the same juice.  Hope you try these and enjoy.

Oh no….more green beans to be planted this spring…I can feel it coming.

French Baquettes

January 26, 2011

This recipe from and was posted on Facebook.    It sounded quick and easy for a yeast bread.  I read the reviews and they all sounded promising.  Although this recipe is originally written for a bread machine, it works just great without.  I used my KichenAid…..Layla, I love you….almost as much as my Honey.


  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon water

Proof the yeast in water with sugar.  Add to flour in mixer and knead.  When just about finished kneading, add the salt.  Lightly grease and place in a bowl to rise until double.  Punch down then roll to 16X12 rectangle and then cut in half.  Roll each half starting on the 12 side, pounding out air bubbles as you go.  Place side by side and cut slits in each loaf.  Let rise until double then brush egg and water over and bake at 375 for 20 to 25 minutes with some water in the oven in another pan.

This bread is crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.  Yum!!!  It wil make great sandwich rolls or dipping/dunking bread.  I admit that I forgot to brush the egg on the top to aid in browning, but they turned out ok anyway.  I need to work on my shaping too, but sure tastes good.

I was poking around some of my favorite blogs.  I found the cutest parkas made by finnskimo.  She is Finish and Eskimo and lives above the Arctic Circle in Kotzebue AK.  She is always making things for her kids and with her kids and just having a great time and enjoying almost every minute of life.  If ya get a chance check it out.


January 25, 2011

I seemed to have an over abundance of canned applesauce.  The kids get it with commodities every month and being in a can…just tastes toooo tinny.    So I was digging through the old old recipe box in hopes of finding some thing to make.  Ah Ha….The kids great grandmother”s recipe jumped out.

Grandma Tugman’s recipe uses fresh apples and you make it in a big roaster in the oven.  Well, I am feeling better, but not THAT much better.  So decided to come up with one just as yummy but not so much.

Crock Pot Apple Butter

8 15oz cans applesauce

2 cups brown sugar (sugar to taste.  We like ours on the tart side)

1 lemon  juice and zest

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp salt

2 tsp allspice

1 tsp nutmeg

Throw it all in the crock pot for about 24hrs.

Then bottle it like always.  You end up with the prettiest brown and yummy concoction.

We got an unexpected 6…count em 6 inches of snow last night.  What a pleasant surprise.  When my Honey got home at midnite thirty or so, he said we had a couple.  Even the Idaho boy was surprised.  Buses and school were running two hours late and that put a cramp in things, but all in all, good to see.

But the birdies aren’t happy.  Have a great day everyone!!!!

Chocolate Chip Cookies for Cheaters

January 23, 2011

Well, at least I know now why I have felt “out-of-sorts” most of this week.  The dreaded flu.  Hope it only last today.  I really don’t feel like blogging today, but I have already missed too many days.

Earlier in the week, as I put the last of the brownies in my Honey’s lunch, I knew I had to whip up some kind of cookies for the next day.  It was late in the afternoon and I didn’t feel like it.  Something easy and quick.  Well, here it is… from….


2 1/3 c. sifted cake flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 c. soft butter
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 (12 oz.) pkg. semi-sweet chocolate pieces
1 c. walnuts, chopped
Sift together flour, soda and salt; set aside. Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Add dry ingredients; mix well. Stir in chocolate pieces and walnuts. Spread mixture in greased 15 1/2 x 10 1/2 inch jelly roll pan. Bake in 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until done. Cool in pan. Cut into 2 inch squares. Makes about 35.
Now please understand that I have always been chocolate chip cookies challenged.  No recipe…nothing I have tried has ever prevented flat spread out ugly cookies.  These are nice and flakey.  I will use this anytime the family or I have a craving for chocolate chip cookies.  My only tip or suggestion is to dampen whatever you are going to use to spread out the dough..fingers or spatula.  The dough is really sticky.

A Little Early, but…..

January 19, 2011

Snowed again last night….not much, but at least it covered up the ugly.  It started as rain so it’s kinda crunchy now.  Even delayed school for 2 hours, so the whole day has been off schedule.

I know it’s early, but I promised myself I would make at least one thing a month toward Christmas.  Started out easy.


These are soooo easy.  You use 2 beveled holly leaves…the even have pre-drilled holes in them.  Line up the holes so you like the way the leaves fall.  Glue them together.  I use E6000….it works great on glass.  Glue 2 red glass globs (you know, those glass things at the bottom of your fish tank or  “faux” flower arrangement) as the berries.  Let dry and string cord through the hole.  It took me all of 20 minutes to make 6 of them.  Hardest part is getting the cord through the hole.

Now on to some gifts.  Vanilla Extract.  Hhmmmm….  I have read a few different recipes, but they all are basically alike.  Vanilla beans and Vodka.  So if you happen to give some to someone who doesn’t cook, they can always drink it.

I cut up 3 vanilla beans, put them in the bottles and filled them with cheap ass Vodka….after all, we aren’t sipping it here.  Seal them up and they sit for a month and the longer the better.  I will  show the finished product in a month.  And as a bonus, as your vanilla disappears, you can refill with more Vodka until the color doesn’t darken anymore.

I really thought the bottles where going to be tall and skinny and I would have just split the beans…would have looked prettier, but no they were short and fat…like me…LOL.  Got the beans and bottles from Beanilla on line.  They have all sorts of beans from all over the world and buying them in bulk you can save a bunch.  They are shrink wrapped when you get them and very very fresh.  They also carry vanilla paste and lots of other vanillaey things.

Wonder who’s getting Vanilla for Christmas???


Black Bean Veggie Soup

January 18, 2011

I am always looking for new soup recipes.  My Honey loves soup.  And now that he working at a place that has a microwave in the break room, now I can send it in his lunch.  This is similar to my chicken chili, but no chicken and not quite so spicy….yet anyway.  This recipe is from the Allrecipes website.



  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (8.75 ounce) can whole kernel corn
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes


  1. In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat; cook onion, garlic, and carrots, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is softened. Add chili powder and cumin; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add stock, 1 can of the beans, corn, and pepper; bring to boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in food processor or blender, puree together tomatoes and remaining can of beans; add to pot. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until carrots are tender.

I followed the recipe except that I added some celery and used V-8 instead of vegetable stock.

Well, it passed my Honey’s approval and is on its way to work as I speak, or blog or whatever.

Beer Here

January 17, 2011

Yesterday was a rainy, dark and dreary day.  My Honey and Rex were going to split wood, but that project just wasn’t in the cards.  Sooo……I cleared off my counters (which needed it) and turned the kitchen over to the men.

We buy brew kits from Wind River Brewing in Wisconsin.  The kits come with all the ingredients you need…except the water.  They also have all the basic equipment you need, along with ever accessory you think you may need.  And…knock on wood…..we haven’t had a batch go wrong.

So I now have not one, but two 5 gallon brewing buckets sitting on my counter.  The will get moved today to the back bathroom tub where they can merrily brew away for 2 weeks until they get moved to the carboys for another brew spell.  Beer sure does take awhile.  Glad I can buy it in the store.

I was sitting here in the dark this morning, enjoying the quiet and I kept hearing water…..not dripping, but definitely water.  My first thought was the cat…on the counter…sure death, but no…..the Gopher Pale Ale is busy burbling out its bubbler on top of the bucket.   Yeeeaaahhhhhhh.

There’s a Moose on the Loose

January 16, 2011

My neighbor texted me on Friday while I was in town that there was a moose in her yard.  Thinking she had had one too many frozen margaritas, I called my Honey, who hadn’t gone to work yet and asked him to go check.  And sure enough, there it was.

I guess everybody’s first thought was  “Where’s Mama?”  We have been hearing alot of rifle shots lately, closer than normal, so I bet Mama is hanging to cure at someones house.  Out here on the Rez, the Natives can hunt anytime…it’s just us white folks who can’t.

There are moose around, but until now, you couldn’t have proved it by me.  Even my Honey, who moved out here when he was 12, hasn’t seen one.  They are in the hills way east of us or down in the “bottoms”.  It’s an overgrown area where the Tribe runs cattle that borders the American Falls Reservoir.

I didn’t think much more about it, but when the gkids went out to do chores yesterday afternoon, they came smokin’ in the house.  “There’s a moose out there”.  I grabbed my camera and took a few shots. Gramps gave the kids the talk about watching for it when they go out to play or do chores and not to corner it because it would run over them.  6 year old Bubba looked up at him and said, “Ya mean like Grandma got run over by a reindeer?”.  Outta the mouths of babes.  ROTFLMAO!!!   Have a great Sunday.

A Little Different…laundry detergent

January 15, 2011

I got this recipe from WyoNella…who got it from her MIL.  And my MIL has been after me for the recipe to send to a friend.  So I just as well tell everybody about it.


1 bar FELS-NAPHTHA soap

1 cup Arm and Hammer WASHING soda…not baking

1 cup 20 Mule Team Borax

The above makes 4 gallons of detergent.  You can halve or quarter it…depending on how much you want to make.  First grate the bar of soap finely.  I used the hand grater the first few times, but the soap is soft enough that the food processor works just fine.  Melt the soap in simmering water until dissolved stirring quite often.  When the soap is dissolved, add the washing soda and borax, stirring until dissolved.  Pour into your container, add enough water to make the total amount and shake shake shake and shake some more.  Whatever container you use, make sure there is plenty of shake room.  For the next 3 days, shake it whenever you think about it.  The more the better.  Then transfer it to a smaller container if need be.

I put 2 gallons in each one of my 20lb kitty litter jugs.  The more you shake the less lumps.  Seems to work in cold or warm water.  And is way cheaper…about 2 bucks a gallon.

It does separate so when you use it,  shake it some more.  Happy laundry day!!