Posts Tagged ‘winter’

Welcome March

March 9, 2011

OK…OK..so March is almost half over.  But I am soooooo very glad that February is over!!!  Between internet meltdowns, computer meltdowns…then having to learn a new one with a new operating system…remembering passwords and trying to remember favorite sites, family meltdowns, sickness or just generally not feeling good, and the gray skys leading to the infamous “winter funk”.  One good did thing happen in February….WyoNella came for a visit.  We did have a good time.  We had plans of going to Twin Falls to a Stained Glass/Ceramic Shop, but the weather stopped us.  So we stayed home and colored her hair.  I left her eyebrows and trim to someone alot more talented in that field than I am.  I didn’t even make anything ahead for Christmas.  But I am so thankful that the whole damn month is done!!!!!

So whats been so much better about March??  Lets see….

These came in the mail.  Ought to be fun to try to make these.  They came from the Extension Office in Fairbanks.

Pocatello Old Town had their first annual Beerfest this Saturday.  My Honey and I had a great time.  A dozen or so microbreweries brought their wares for all to sample at some of the pubs in town.  It was a walking tour, but one needed a DD to get home.  One of the brews was 7.8…WOW.  We have a little brewery here in town…Portnef Valley Brewery.  I must admit that I enjoyed their brew the most.

On Sunday we finally bottled our own beer.  A batch of Gopher Pale Ale…which is WyoNella’s favorite and a batch of Dunkelweisen.  Both of them were both yummy.  It will be about 2 more weeks now before the carbonation does it’s thing and they are ready to drink.  Can’t wait….but will have to.

DeeJaye finally got my hair done.  I am back to being a redhead and I feel so much better.  She also got my brows done and I can now hold my eyes open, now that I don’t have double eyebrows to hold up.

We did have 3.6 inches of snow the other night.  Made for some nasty driving for a few hours, but the sun came out and things melted off the next day.

Plans for the garden are now under way.  Ordered my heirloom tomato plants from a local grower.  I ordered Amish Paste and San Marzano..both romas, Matt’s Wild Cherry, a tiny cherry that is sweeter than candy, Omars Lebanese and Siberian Russian…early varieties and new to our garden, and Wonder Light…a yellow variety.  Cutting down on the garden this year…or so we say.  Onion sets on sale, so will pick some up tomorrow.

This came in the mail today.  I saw it in Mother Earth News.  Wyonella gave me her bread machine…alas…no directions.  I will muddle through with the help of my new cookbook.  Like I need another one.  If al else fails, I will use the recipes by changing them to old fashion kneaded bread.  Whatever works.

And the Iditarod started. 

Thanks to the Anchorage Daily News for the pics.  Most of the mushers and teams are in Takotna just about ready to leave from their 24 hour layover. 

Good luck Martin Buser!!!!!!  Speed and safety be with you and your dogs.

Yes…..It’s Been Cold Here

February 3, 2011

Boy, the way the weather has been this winter I was beginning to think that we might have just missed the below zero weather, but alas, it found us.

How cold has it been???

The hens have all but quit laying.  Two eggs a day is all the ole girls will give up and I can’t say as I blame them.  The cats refuse to go out.  It’s much nicer to lounge on the back of the couch in the sunshine.  Everytime the door opens, the dogs have their noses in the door wanting in, or they are curled up on the patio chair pads.  The kids and I have added insulated coveralls to our wardrobe for doing chores.  And my Explorer, which has to sit outside because there is no room in the garage, will start, but doesn’t really want to.  When it does there is the loudest screeching noise as the belt slips around until it warms up.  In other words…………

So we need a good hot breakfast.  How about home made chorizo, potatoes, eggs a bit of cheese??  Works for me.

Fry up some spuds, add chorizo and fry till done, throw in some scrambled eggs and when they are about done, add cheese.  Simple enough.

CHORIZO

5 lbs ground pork

3 medium yellow onions

1 poblano pepper

8 cloves garlic chopped

3 Tbsp paprika

5 tsp salt

1 Tbsp cumin

1 Tbsp oregano

2 tsp cayenne pepper

3 Tbsp dried crushed red peppers

1/2 tsp cinnamon

I ran the onions and pepper through the grating blade on the food processor.  I had plenty of juice from that mixture and the pre-chopped garlic, but if you think you need a little more liquid use a tad bit of dry red wine.   I put it all in Layla with the dough hook and let it mix away.  Every once in awhile I brought up any unmixed sausage from the bottom with a spatula.  No raw meat under my fingernails or in my rings!!!!

My tablespoons measurements are heaping and all of them are to taste.  To try yours out and make sure you are happy with it, fry a little patty and taste test.  This recipe is NOT that greasy red stuff that you buy in the casings at the grocery store that turns everything red.

UPDATE……….

The 4BT is here!!!!!!!

 

APPLE BUTTER

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!!!!

Birdie Biscuits

January 13, 2010

I found a recipe in our local Sunday paper for making homemade birdseed biscuits.  I thought it might be a fun thing to do with the grandkids and it has been really cold out, so why not a little extra for our outside friends.

BIRDSEED BISCUITS

3/4 cup birdseed

1 tbsp flour

2 tbsp water

Mix together and pack into a sprayed cookie cutter that is sitting on a foil covered cookie sheet.  Insert half a straw into seed mixture to make hanging hole.  Bake at 170 for an hour until the biscuit is hard.  Let cool and then remove straw.  Thread ribbon through hole and hang outside in a sheltered spot.

This recipe makes 2 3-inch or 1 4-inch biscuit.  Ahahahaha.  Not a good idea around here.  I started out with 3 cups of seed and upped the flour and water accordingly.

This is the first batch that Bubba made.

This is a very messy project, but not too much so that we didn’t try it again when the girls got home from school.

But we were all MOST disappointed.  We ended up with 2 birdie biscuits.

And a cookie sheet that looked like this

I thought maybe the first bunch hadn’t been compacted very well, but on the second bunch we were extra careful to get the seed scrunched down.  Soooooo…….we are going to try adding a little lard and hope that helps stick things together.  I will let ya know.

And she brought the snow

November 20, 2009

Wyonella came over this weekend and not only did she bring the boys, but she brought Sarah and her new baby Brenna.  That was a very nice surprise. Of course that makes me a great grandmother of sorts.And this time of year, Wyonella is famous for bringing the snow with her and of course she did not disappoint.   Not much on Saturday morning but enough to have to clear the walk.  And I was amazed.  My Honey hasn’t forgotten how to shovel snow after 5 years in the Sand.

The family has decided that they have a new favorite dessert for Thanksgiving.  Hooray…..that means I can forgo the soggy pumpkin pies.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1 3/4 cups ginger cookie crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 stick melted salted butter

Filling:

  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pureed pumpkin
  • 3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For crust:

In medium bowl, combine crumbs, sugar and cinnamon. Add melted butter. Press down flat into a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

For filling:

Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add pumpkin puree, eggs, egg yolk, sour cream, sugar and the spices. Add flour and vanilla. Beat together until well combined.

Pour into crust. Spread out evenly and place oven for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours

The original recipe was Paula’s, but I changed the crust and added some more spices.  Next time I think I will add a bit of fresh grown ginger.

Coconut Cake and More Snow

March 23, 2009

Made something today that makes me wonder if the aliens had taken me.  Coconut in any form is yucky and I was so out of my comfort zone.  However, Daughter #2 wanted a coconut cake for her birthday and let’s face it …..we will do just about anything for our kids.  So I told her that as soon as I got back I would get started.  Today was windy and snowy…just a white kind of day to make a white cake.  In fact, I made two batches.  One in cupcake form.

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I used Paula Deen’s Jamie’s Coconut cake for the cake, filling and frosting.  I will have to let you know how it tastes later.  I did sample the batter for the cake.  I must admit that I was a bit disappointed.  It didn’t taste coconutty, even though it did have coconut milk in it.  I think that if I make it again, I would use regular milk and use coconut extract.  The rest of  it will have to wait for the critique from a coconut eater.  If you decide to make cupcakes, only fill the cups half full instead of the normal 2/3’s.  Otherwise you will have the mess I did on my first batch.  Sorry… too pissed to take a pic.  Here’s the recipe.

Cake:

  • 2 sticks butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups sifted self-rising flour
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Filling:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut

7-Minute Frosting:

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar or 1 tablespoon white corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 to 3 cups flaked sweetened coconut

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) cake pans.

Using an electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugar and continue to cream well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and coconut milk alternately to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and continue to beat until just mixed.

Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 3 or 4-inches above counter, then dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure you of a more level cake.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until done. Cool in pans 5 to 10 minutes. Invert cakes onto cooling racks.

Filling:

Stir together sugar, sour cream, milk, and coconut in a bowl until well blended. Place the first cake layer onto pedestal. Using the wrong end of a wooden spoon, poke holes approximately 1-inch apart until entire cake has been poked. Spread a third of filling mixture on cake layer. Top with second layer, repeat process. Top with last layer and repeat process again.

Cook’s Note: As each layer is stacked, stick them with toothpicks to prevent cake from shifting.

Frosting:

Place sugar, cream of tartar or corn syrup, salt, water, and egg whites in the top of a double boiler. Beat with a handheld electric mixer for 1 minute. Place pan over boiling water, being sure that boiling water does not touch the bottom of the top pan. Beat constantly on high speed with electric mixer for 7 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Frost the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle top and sides of cake with coconut

I will keep you informed

Freezing Fog and Pea Soup

February 3, 2009

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Picture this, with a gray background.  For about a week now it has been the view from my kitchen window.  But as you can see, the fog is begining to lift.  But it is still very cold out there.  Don’t get me wrong, it is very pretty, but white…white…white.  I needed of some color.  And some soup.  Green, I think.

Super Simple Spit Pea Soup

1 lb package of dried split peas, green, yellow or combo, rinsed and sorted

chopped onion, chopped carrot, garlic

Throw it all in the pot and cover with 6-8 cups of water, chicken stock or a combination of.    Simmer, with the lid tilted off to the side, for 45 min to an hour.  Serve as is, smash it with a potato masher, run it through a counter top blender or use an immersion blender.  You can add a ham bone, left over ham or pork when you start the pot.  But if you do…..PLEASE remember to remove the bone.  Blenders don’t like bones very well.

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I had some cheese/garlic bread sticks (from the day old rack at the grocery store) and yum……just the thing to warm me up.