Wednesday, October 14, 2009

6 Week Bran Muffins

This recipe was given to me by my step mom many years ago.
The batter will keep in the refrigerator for up to
6 weeks, getting tastier and darker as it has time to 'meld'.
I have never had it last that long, however, as I bake them
up within a couple of weeks. They are the perfect healthy
breakfast or snack!

2 cups boiling water
5 teaspoons soda
1 cup shortening (I use half Crisco, half butter)
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 quart buttermilk
5 cups flour
1 Tablespoon salt
4 cups All Bran (original or buds)
2 cups Bran Flakes ( I used Raisin Bran)
2 cups raisins (and dates if you like)
1 cup chopped nuts
(I didn't use 'cuz I don't care for nuts in my breads or muffins!)
Add soda to boiling water and set aside to cool.
(I always get excited when the soda fizzes in the water!
I know ~ simple pleasures for simple minds! ;~} )
In a very large bowl:
Cream shortening until fluffy.
Add sugar to blend.
Add eggs, one at a time ~
Just look at those bright orange yolks
in those eggs my girls lay for me everyday!
Stir in buttermilk, then add the flour and the salt.
In another bowl:
Stir the soda/water mixture into the bran flakes and buds.
Add raisins (and dates and nuts, if using).
Pour into buttermilk mixture and stir to combine.

You can now bake some muffins or
store in a covered container and refrigerate to bake fresh
anytime you want.
Remember, they get better as they 'age' a few days!

Be sure to stir batter before spooning into muffin tins.
Bake at 375* for 20 minutes.
(I know my muffin tin is kinda groady looking, but it is well used
and works better than my newer shiney ones!)

Serve these old fashioned muffins plain,
with sweet cream butter or
your delicious homemade apple butter!

Note: You can add a bit of chopped apple or other fruit
just before baking for variety.


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A mess of beans!

Green Beans are one of my favorite vegetables!
I especially like them the way my Grandma made them.
Saute 1/2 lb. bacon with 1/2 of a large sweet onion, chopped.
While the bacon and onion are cooking,
I rinse the beans and snip tops and tails off
and toss into the pan of bacon.
I don't measure, just cook what you think you will eat.
(Remember, they will shrink a bit when cooking.)
When your pan is almost full, add a little water and some
minced garlic. Put on the lid and let simmer at least 15 minutes.
Season with a little salt and pepper and serve!
I can make a meal out of just this!

Monday, August 24, 2009

French Peach Pie

This is our favorite pie recipe that we use for either apples or peaches.
I have a big box of peaches almost ready to can.
A few of the peaches are ready to use and
I just can't wait to taste these beauties!
(Oh, and this recipe has a 'secret ingredient'
but I won't reveal that to you just yet!
First you have to promise not to share this recipe with
just anyone, but only to very special people ~ that is
the way I received it ~ about 30 years ago ~and
that is why I am now sharing it with you!)
Now, let's bake a pie!
Prepare and set aside one unbaked pie shell
(or use a pre~made one like I did today)
Select 8 large ripe peaches (or apples). Peal and slice into a bowl
into which you have measured and mixed together:
1/2 Cup sugar
1/4 Cup flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Stir to coat fruit.
Spoon into prepared pie crust, heaping the fruit
in the center, and sprinkle
with 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
In a small bowl, combine with a pastry blender
or two knives or even your (clean) hands:
1 Cup flour
1 scant Cup sugar
3/4 Cup butter
Top fruit with butter mixture
(Now for the secret part!)
Center the pie into a large, heavy brown paper bag!
Close the open end by folding a couple of times
(if long enough)
or by stapling
or with paper clips.
Try to not have the bag touch the top of the pie.
Place on baking sheet and bake at 400* for 15 minutes
then turn the oven down to 350* and
continue baking for an additional 45 minutes.
Do Not Open The Oven Or The Bag
during baking!
Remove from oven and let pie remain in unopened
bag for another 15 minutes.
After the 15 minutes, cut or tear open the paper bag
and reveal the most delectable pie you've ever eaten!
This pie is best the first day, while the topping is still
crisp, but you usually don't have to worry about that!
It never lasts long!

Extra special with a scoop of French Vanilla Ice Cream!
Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sweet/Hot Dill Pickles

3 quarts thinly sliced cucumbers

To each jar add:

1 head of dill

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

1 or 2 small dried red peppers

Bring to a boil:

4 cups sugar

4 cups cider vinegar

4 Tablespoon pickling salt

Pour over cucumbers in jar and put sterilized lids and bands on jars.

Process in boiling water bath 10 minutes.


This recipe is only for 3 quarts of pickles.

I double it and make many batches.


These are our favorite pickles! I hope you try them! ;~P

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Banana Bread Deluxe

Because we had lots of overripe bananas!

2 cups sugar
1 cup shortening
6 ripe bananas
4 large eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped nuts (opt.)
Cream shortening and sugar in mixer. Add very ripe bananas and eggs alternately.
(If bananas are not too ripe, they are best mashed ahead of time)
Add sifted dry ingredients
(I never sift ~ I put dry ingredients into a bowl and stir well with a wire wisk)
Mix until moist
Fold in nuts if desired (I don't! I'm a purist~no sugar or cream in my tea and no nuts in my banana bread!)
Spoon into 2 greased loaf pans ~ bottom and sides
Bake 350* 1 hour or until toothpick comes out clean
Cool completely
(I think I must be a non-conformist! I can't wait for it to come out of the oven, much less wait till it is cooled! But I have to say ~ this is better the next day when the top gets sweet and sticky!)
(I'm sure you will! ;~} )

Friday, July 17, 2009

Wild Black Cap Jam

Prepare jars and lids.

Bring water to a boil in a water bath canner

or a large pot with lid.

(Filled jars need to be covered by 1-2 inches of boiling water.)


* Measure 5 cups of crushed/mashed Wild Black Caps (black raspberries) into a large, heavy pot


*Stir in one box of fruit pectin and 1/2 teaspoon butter


*Bring mixture to a full rolling boil while stirring


*Add 7 cups sugar (I use organic)


*Return mixture to a full boil and continue to STIR CONSTANTLY for

1 full minute


*Remove from heat and skim off any foam (to an awaiting saucer for

an awaiting child to enjoy ~ preferably with homemade bread!)


*Ladle into jars, wipe rims with damp cloth, cover with lids and bands and

process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes.


*Remove jars and place on a towel to cool


*Listen to the music of 9 jars of beautiful jam sealing!

Music to my ears!

Edited on June 4, 2012
to join laura Williams' Musings
Carnival of Home Preserving

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Farmhouse Quiche


Into a baked pie crust add:
1/4 sweet onion, chopped & sauteed

cooked, chopped vegetable of your choice
ie. asparagus, spinach
(I used steamed broccoli)
about 3/4 cup
a nice handful of cut up ham, sausage or crumbled bacon
3 three eggs, beaten with one cup milk
salt & pepper
Cheese (lots!)
Bake in a 350* oven for 35-40 minutes or until a knife inserted into center
comes out clean
Great for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Strawberry Shortcake


1/4 cup sugar
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup butter
1 beaten egg
2/3 cup milk

Stir together sugar, flour, and baking powder. Cut in the butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Combine the egg and milk; add to dry mixture. Stir just to moisten. Spread the batter into a greased 8 x 1 1/2~inch round baking pan.

Bake in a 450* oven for 15 to 18 minutes or till a wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan.

from Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book

Top with strawberries and sugar mashed with a pastry blender. I used a pound of berries with about 1/4 cup sugar. And don't forget the fresh whipped cream! A pint of whipping cream, a couple of tablespoons of sugar, and a nip of almond extract (I use this stuff in everything now); beat with an electric mixer till fluffy. Just see if any makes it out of the bowl and onto the shortcake!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Farmhouse Potato Salad

With the 'girls' working extra hard these last few weeks, we have an abundance of eggs!
Here is one of my favorite ways to use them up.
Farmhouse Potato Salad
Boil 8-10 small/medium sized potatoes
Peeled and cubed
1 doz. boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
(Of course, I only use our chickens' eggs. They are only fed organic feed and have free range.)
1/2 pint of your favorite dill pickles, chopped
(I use my home canned dills. I will share the recipe and canning instructions during canning season.)
1/2 sweet onion, diced
1 - 1 1/2 cups Mayonnaise
(depending on how moist you like yours)
Mix all together in a large bowl.
Salt and pepper to taste.
I always sprinkle Paprika on top
('cuz that's how Grandma used to do it!)
I don't know that it adds any flavor
but it looks pretty!

Perfect for your next picnic!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Chicken Corn Chowder

I'd like to introduce you to my "three sisters!" Well, actually, I don't have three sisters, that is just what I call this standby combination of carrots, onions and celery! I use these three vegetables for the basis for so many of the dishes I cook; soups, sauces and even stir fry.
Here is how I put them to work today.

Cook 1/4 lb. natural uncured bacon till almost done.
Add 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 organic carrots, chopped
Cook till "three sister's" are tender
Add 6 thawed, chicken tenderloins, cut into bite sized pieces
Cook till no longer pink.
Season with Sea Salt, Organic Pepper and Mrs. Dash (Garlic and Herb)
When chicken is done, add 3 potatoes, peeled and diced
Cover with 2 cups Organic/Free Range Chicken Broth
Cover pot and simmer till potatoes are done.
Add 2 cups Organic Half & Half
1 cup organic frozen corn kernels
1 teaspoon Superior Touch Better Than Bouillon Chicken Flavor
Heat but do not boil!
(Thicken with 1/4 cup flour/milk mixture)
Season to taste
Then taste...and taste...and...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Simple Seafood Salad

Here's a fast, easy salad that can be a
jumping off point for other menu items.
Toss together in a pretty, large bowl;
1 lb. Salad Shrimp
1 lb. Immitation Crab meat, chopped to the size of the shrimp meat
3 green onions, thinly sliced (whites only)
1 &1/2 Avocado, chopped
(sprinkled with just a dribble of lemon juice to keep from turning brown)
1 small tomato, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup Best Foods Mayonaise
Sea Salt, Pepper and Johnny's Seafood Seasoning to taste

This could be served on a bed of lettuce, stuffed in celery hearts or hollowed out tomatoes or peppers, or as a delicious sandwich filling.
Right now, I am going to stuff myself with some!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Cheese Stuffed Shells

Here is a tasty variation on my recipe for Stuffed Manicotti.
Cook Large Shell pasta (25)
or 14 pieces of Manicotti
about 10 minutes in boiling salted water.
Drain and set aside.
In a large bowl mix;
1 15oz. tub Ricotta Cheese
1/4 C. grated Parmesan Cheese
2 C. Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1 Large Egg, beaten
2 T. chopped fresh parsley (I didn't have any today)

You can use
3 C. Spaghetti Sauce
or "doctor" it up like I do; here's how.
In a pan, fry 1 lb. ground beef
(I use ground venison because Gentleman Farmer hunts and that's what we have in the freezer.)
1/2 small sweet onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
When browned, add your favorite jar sauce and 2 T. brown sugar
Simmer for a bit.
Spread thin layer of sauce on bottom of a 9X13 baking dish.
(I used a round one ~ I rarely follow the rules!)
Fill shell pasta with cheese mixture and nestle into sauce in dish.
Filling pasta can be messy, but I use my handy small ice cream/cookie dough scoop.
Makes filling go fast.
Manicotti, on the other hand, is always a challenge. I fill a heavy duty zip lock bag with cheese and snip off a corner. Squeeze into Manicotti. Makes filling the tubes easier!

Top with remaining sauce.
Cover with foil and bake 375* for 35 minutes
(Because I'm a little O.C.D. - see post at The Parables - I don't want foil to come into contact with my food so I always cover with parchment before using foil.)

This can be topped with more shredded cheese of your choice. I chose not to use any because we don't need it.
Serve with a nice salad and a vegetable and garlic bread!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Bread in a Flower Pot!

Country White Bread in a Flower Pot!
3 T. yeast
2 C. warm water (110* - 115*)
1/2 C. sugar
1 T. Sea Salt
1/4 C. powdered milk
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 C. vegetable oil
6-7 cups bread flour
Dissolve yeast in 2 cups warm water.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, salt, eggs and oil.
Add in yeast/water and 3 cups of the flour and powdered milk.
Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form soft dough.
(I added 1 cup White Whole Wheat as part of the flour.)
turn onto a floured board and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.

Place in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise until double~about 1 hour.
(I preheat my oven to 200* and then turn off and let dough rise in there.)
Punch down dough. Divide in half and shape into loaves if using regular loaf pans (greased) or
fill well seasoned terra cotta pots 1/2 full.
NOTE: Use only unglazed terra cotta pots to avoid lead poisoning!
Also, regular pots need to be seasoned with oil in a warm oven.
I cut waxed paper to fit in my large pot just to make sure it wouldn't stick. (greased)
You can check the internet for directions for baking in terra cotta pots.
(My pots were made for baking in. But I got them so long ago, I can't remember where.)
Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled, again about 1 hour.
Bake at 375* for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from pans/pots to cool on wire rack.


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Farmhouse Calico Beans

Tonight just seemed like a 'Bean Night'. Gentleman Farmer agreed.
Here's the recipe.
In a deep pot, brown 1 lb. Hamburger (ground turkey, or 1 cup. cubed ham can be subtituted. Tonight, I used ground venison breakfast sausage.)
along with 4 strips bacon and 1/2 large onion, chopped.

When meat is cooked through, add
1 can pork and beans ( I used Bushe's Maple Cured Bacon)
1 can kidney beans, with liquid
1 can black beans, with liquid
1 can Butter beans (or any white bean you prefer)
1/2 C. ketchup (I use 1 can stewed tomatoes)
1/3 C. brown sugar
2 T. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 t. dry mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
Stir and simmer about 1 hour.
Be careful, this will scorch on the bottom if not stirred now and then.

Serve with piping hot buttered corn bread. Enjoy!

This will be even better the next night!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Pasta and Cheese

Greenhouse Pasta and Cheese

(I don't use a recipe with this, just add stuff 'til it's right, the way Gram did. So I'm making some estimates here.)

I love all the many different pasta shapes; pretty much anything you like will work ~ macaroni, fusilli, penne like I used today...

Cook your pasta according to the package directions.

In another saucepan, melt about 4 tablespoons of butter and stir in about 4 tablespoons of flour. Make a roux (paste, another thing from Gram). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in about 4 cups of milk ~ we like whole. =) Then start adding your cheese. We use whatever cheese is hanging out in the fridge, so tonight it was some tangy Mexican queso and some shredded cheddar. Mr. Browning likes the sauce thinner, so maybe 2 cups of cheese altogether. Save some to sprinkle on the top when you pour the sauce over the pasta.

Bake for 15 minutes at 350* until it's bubbling and thickened and you just can't stand it any longer! Dig in!

I've heard of an infinite number of things to add like bacon, chives, bread crumbs...egg (if you're like our favorite president Reagan.) The possibilities are endless. Toss in whatever sounds good to you at the moment.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Peanut butter cookies with a twist

I started mixing up a batch of peanut butter cookies a few days ago and then realized that I had plum run out of vanilla. I searched through my spice drawer and found some almond extract; would that work as a substitute? I took the risk and now this recipe is a weekly request. My husband (who doesn't expound normally) said that they are the best cookies he's ever eaten! My heart swells.

Go try them out!

Greenhouse Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup peanut butter (do you like crunchy or creamy?)

1/2 cup sugar (go with the real stuff here, no faux)

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 egg (guess which egg we used today)

drum roll, please...1/4 teaspoon almond extract (this stuff is strong!)

1 1/4 cup flour

Cream together the butter and peanut butter. Add the sugars, soda, and the baking powder. Beat in the egg and almond extract. Stir in the flour. Shape dough into 1 inch balls; make cross~marks with the tines of a fork. Bake for about 7 minutes at 375*. A baking stone makes great cookies, if you have one!

~I revised a recipe from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book~

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Curry Turkey Meatballs

Sometimes I just crave curry! I only have two recipes with curry and this is one of my favorites! ;~}
In a large bowl, mix
1 pound ground turkey
1 large egg
1/4 c. dried bread crumbs
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/3 c. finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon salt
until well blended.
I use my (very clean) hands, just like Grandma used to do.
Shape into small balls

I double these ingredients and use half for turkey loaves
(makes great sandwiches).
In a frying pan, over medium heat, stir
1 c. chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
2 cloves chopped garlic
1 tablespoon oil
until onion is soft, about 5 minutes
2 tablespoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
(more if you like things hotter)
Stir about 1 minute until spices are fragrant.
3 c. chicken broth
and bring to a boil over medium high heat.
Drop meatballs into boiling broth.
Cover and simmer over low heat until center is no longer pink,
about 8-10 minutes.
In a small bowl or measuring cup
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/3 c. chicken broth
Add to pan, stirring until sauce boils.
Salt to taste.

Serve over steaming hot rice!

I have served these on toothpicks as appetizers with great response.
I hope you enjoy them, too!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Starting with the basics

What better recipe to start off with than everybody's favorite
Chocolate Chip Cookies!
This particular version is the favorite here at The Farm.
Soft, chewy and milk chocolatey good!
Begin by preheating the oven to 350*
In a small bowl, combine
1 1/2 c. flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
with a wire whisk.
Set aside.
In a large bowl, using a hand mixer
or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) softened butter (the real thing)
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
until creamy about 3-5 minutes (I never used to think this mattered. They are only cookies, right? Take the extra couple of minutes to get this creamy ~ it does make a difference.)
Beat in
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon real vanilla extract

Gradually stir in flour mixture (I do this part by hand with a wooden spoon)
Stir in
6 oz. Milk Chocolate Chips
(Note: As far as I am concerned, this recipe is finished! I eat the cookie dough raw! You may prefer to continue on ....
and drop by rounded spoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet.
Again, I use a small scoop and bake on a Pampered Chef
Bake 8 - 10 minutes.
Let cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes before removing to rack to cool completely
or whenever cool enough to get from fingers to mouth! :~P

Enjoy with a friend and a cold glass of milk!

This recipe only makes 1 1/2 - 2 doz. cookies. I like to double it and freeze half
in wax paper rolls for just baked cookies on a whim. Actually, these take no time to mix up, but frozen, they are nice to give to busy mommies to fix for cookie hungry daddies and kiddies!