Sunday, October 16, 2011

Apple Dumplings

Still using up apples...I love fall!!! This is Phil's all time favorite dessert...a recipe passed down from my mother-in-law.

2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter
¾ cup milk

Make dough, roll ¾ inch thick. Cut into 6 or 8 squares. Fold in 1 cup chopped apples plus 2 tsp lemon juice. Put into pan.

2 cups white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp flour
½ tsp salt
2 cups water
¼ cup butter
dash of nutmeg

Pour boiling sauce over dumplings. Bake at 325-350 F for 30 minutes. Baste and brown.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Nutty Broccoli Soup

We love soup in the fall...this is one of our favorites!  I was pleasantly surprised how creamy this soup is!

1 large head broccoli
1 teaspoon ghee or olive oil
1 cup chopped leeks or onions
2 teaspoons Bragg Liquid Aminos or tamari (low sodium soy sauce can be substituted)
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon marjoram
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon dill
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ cup almonds, finely chopped or ground, or substitute 2 tablespoons almond butter for a richer taste (I've used peanut butter when I've been out of almond butter)
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Cut the broccoli head into florets.  Peel and chop the stalk.  Heat the oil in a soup pot.  Add the leeks, aminos, herbs, and spices.  Saute for 2-3 minutes, then add the broccoli and the finely chopped almonds.  If you are using almond butter, add later.  Saute the almonds and broccoli with the herbs and spices for several minutes, stirring frequently.  Add the stock, bring to a boil (if you are using almond butter, add it now), then reduce the heat.  Simmer the soup until the broccoli is almost soft.  Be careful not to overcook the broccoli.  Let the soup cool for about 10 minutes, then puree with a hand blender or food processor.  Reheat, then add the lemon juice.  Ladle into bowls and garnish with chopped parsley.  Use different vegetables in this soup recipe such as carrots, squash, potato, and cauliflower.  Each makes a delicious soup combination.

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

This is a yummy favorite given to me by my mum.  :o)  A fall favorite at our house!

Ingredients for cake:
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 2/3 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 - 15oz. can of pumpkin
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Mix eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, and pumpkin until smooth and fluffy.  A mixer is preferred.
  • Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon.
  • Stir slowly into pumpkin mixture until thoroughly combined.
  • Spread batter into an ungreased jelly roll pan and bake for 25-30 minutes.
After cake is cool, add cream cheese frosting.  Recipe below.

Ingredients for Cream Cheese frosting:
  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 1/4 pound cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
Tip: I double this recipe for my frosting loving husband.  ;o)

  • Cream together cheese and softened butter.  
  • Stir in vanilla.
  • Add sugar a little at a time, beating until smooth.  A mixer is recommended.
Enjoy this fall favorite!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bread and Butter Pickles

Bread and Butter Pickles
This is a very simple recipe that I have made several times over the years and it has become a family favorite. Very good with hamburgers and hotdogs.

30 medium unpared cucumbers (about one gallon sliced)
2 to 3 large white onions
1/2 cup pickling salt

  1. Rinse and trim ends of cucumbers then thinly slice (I use the thick slicer on my food processor)
  2. Cut onions into fine strips.
  3. Place prepared vegetables in a large bowl or kettle. Dissolve salt in enough ice water to cover vegetables (I usually add any ice I have in my cube trays) and let stand for three hours. Drain but do not rinse.

Combine in a large kettle:

5 cups sugar
5 cups plain white vinegar
2 Tablespoons mustard seed
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon celery seed
  1. Bring to boil. Add drained vegetables and heat to boiling point. Do not boil. Pack into sterilized jars and seal. (I do not process) Yeild - seven to eight pint jars. These are so good even on the first day since there is usually a little left over that won't fit in the jars. They don't last long.
  2. When making pickles I have always used plastic and enamel bowls, utensils and pots, avoiding metal or steel. Don't know if it makes a difference or not but just something I learned from my mother.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Potato Cheese Perogies

Perogies have been a favorite in our family for over thirty years...a bit of work but are worth every bit of time it takes to make them....great any time of year
I applogize...but as you can see...I am no photographer.


  • 5 or 6 good sized potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt for boiling potatoes
  • 1 pound cheddar cheese (I prefer old)
  • 1 Cup finely chopped onions (these are optional)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

  1. Peel, cut and boil potatoes in salted water until fork tender. Drain and reserve the potato water.
  2. Beat potatoes, add cheese and onions (heat from the potatoes will melt the cheese) then add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.


  • 3 Cups unbleached flour
  • 1 Teaspoons salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Cup cooled potato water

  1. Sift flour and salt together in bowl.... Add the two lightly beaten eggs to the cooled potato water and add a little at a time to the flour mixture until a soft dough forms...(should not be a dry dough but a sticky dough which will be eliminated when it is rolled out on a floured surface.) It is important once the dough is formed to cover with plastic and rest for at least one half hour.
  2. Remove a small amount of dough and roll out on a lightly floured surface until thin...cut in circles using a fairly large glass or jar top (remembering to keep the remaining dough covered with a damp cloth it it's bowl) place one generous teaspoon of filling on each round....crimping edges tightly closed....I have learned to fold the crimped edges over and crimp again just to make sure they are well sealed. If the edges do not stick together the dough is too dry so wet your fingers with water to crimp. (Myself I remove a small amount of dough at a time a roll each one separate, fill and takes longer but the dough seems to stay moist and is easier to handle....Place formed perogies on a floured towel or waxed paper until ready to boil.
  3. Because this is a time consuming recipe I make a lot and freeze individually on floured wax paper on a cookie sheet so they are not touching...once they are frozen you can place them in a lage zip lock bag or any freezer container and remove the amount you want as you need them.
  4. To cook perogies drop individually into a large pot of salted boiling water careful not to cook too many at a time or they will stick together. When they float to the top, and the edges appear a little translucent...they are done. Remove with a slotted spoon to a colander...then place in a bowl and toss with butter.
  5. Best of all....serve with large dollops of sour cream.  Perogies can also be served with carmalized onions or crisp crumbled bacon.
Leftovers can be fried in a small amount of butter (My husband prefers them this way). Enjoy

Friday, June 3, 2011

Challah Bread

Last year, a fellow foodie friend of mine, suggested a book called Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François.  The premise of this new kind of bread baking book is that you make a large batch of dough that can stay in the refrigerator for an extended period of time.  All of their recipes require you to mix a large batch of dough that is refrigerator stable.  Then, when you want bread, you slice off a hunk of dough, form it, let it rise and bake it on the day you need it.  I've tried several of the recipes and even purchased their second book, Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day which includes gluten free, seeded, and unusual flour recipes.  I highly recommend!  I felt like a master baker in one day.  :o)

Today I want to share with you a recipe from the book for Challah Bread.  Challah bread is a traditional Jewish sweet loaf enriched with eggs.  It is absolutely yummy - sweet gets my vote any day!  Here is what Wikipedia has to say about Challah bread (I will not pretend to know anything about it aside from its yumminess:

According to Jewish tradition, the three Sabbath meals (Friday night, Saturday lunch, and Saturday late afternoon) and two holiday meals (one at night and lunch the following day) each begin with two complete loaves of bread. This "double loaf" (in Hebrew: lechem mishneh) commemorates the manna that fell from the heavens when the Israelites wandered in the desert for forty years after the Exodus from Egypt. The manna did not fall on the Sabbath or holidays; instead, a double portion would fall the day before the holiday or sabbath.  It is these hunks of bread, recognizable by their traditional braided style (although some more modern recipes are not braided) that are commonly referred to as challah.

Enough history now... onto the recipe!

  • 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of granulated yeast (or two packets)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 1/2 cup of melted butter (or neutral tasting oil), plus extra for greasing the baking sheet
  • 7 cups of unbleached all purpose flour
  • Egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water)
  • Poppy or sesame seeds for the top (optional)

Directions for mixing and storing:
  • Mix the water, yeast, salt, eggs, honey, and butter (or oil) together in a bowl.  I add these ingredients to my Kitchenaid mixer bowl.

  • Mix in the flour without kneading, using a spoon, a 14 cup capacity food processor (with dough blade), or a heavy duty stand mixer (with dough hook).  If you are not using a machine, use wet hands to incorporate the dough.
  • Cover (NOT airtight) and allow to rest at room temperature until the dough rises and collapses/flattens (approximately 2 hours).

  • You can use the dough immediately or refrigerate for up to 5 days.  After 5 days, dough can be frozen in 1 pound portions (four loaves) in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks.  Defrost and allow the usual rising time.

Directions for baking:
  • On baking day, butter or grease a cookie sheet.  Dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1 pound piece (about grapefruit size).  Dust with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the ball down to the bottom on all four sides, rotating a quarter turn as you go.

  • Divide the ball into thirds.  Roll each piece into a long thin rope.  Braid the ropes starting from the center and working to one end.  Turn the loaf around and braid from the center to the last remaining end.

  • Allow the bread to rest on prepared baking sheet for 40 minutes (unrefrigerated fresh dough) or 80 minutes (refrigerated or previously frozen dough).

  • If you're using a baking stone, preheat the oven to 350° 20 minutes before baking.  If you're using a baking sheet, 5 minutes is adequate.  Brush the loaf with egg wash.
  • Bake in the center of the oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.  The challah is done when the braids near the center offer resistance to pressure.
  • Allow to cool before slicing and eating.

    Oat and Wheat Bran Muffins


    I apollogize for not being around for the last while, hopefully I will get back into the swing of things....special appologies to my dear Daughter-in -law Kim.


    3/4 Cup Oat Bran

    3/4 Wheat Bran

    1 Cup Buttermilk

    1/3 Cup Canola Oil

    1 Egg

    2/3 Cup Brown Sugar

    1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla

    1 Cup Unbleached Flour

    1 Teaspoon baking soda

    1 Teaspoon baking powder (generous teaspoon)

    1/2 Teaspoon salt

    1/2 Cup Raisins


    1. Preheat Oven to 375 F

    2. Line Muffin pan with paper liners

    3. Mix oat and wheat bran with buttermilk and let stand for ten minutes (if you don't have buttermilk I use two tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar, add milk to make one cup and let sit till it curdles, this only takes a few minutes)

    4. While bran and milk are standing....Measure out oil, add one slightly beaten egg, the vanilla and raisins....set aside.

    5. Measure out the brown sugar and set aside

    6. Measure out the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt...stir till blended and set aside.

    7. When the ten minutes are up, add brown sugar to the bran mixture, stir in the oil and egg mixture....then add all to the flour blend and stir only till moistened, careful not to overmix

    8. Spoon batter into muffin cups and bake for 15 to 20 minutes....test using a toothpick

    These are fast and simple and so good....enjoy
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