Thursday, April 29, 2010

Easy Baking Recipes, Desserts: Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/4 cup butter; room temperature
1/4 cup honey
1 large egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Grease a cookie sheet.

Cream butter and honey. Add remaining ingredients, except for the chocolate ships and mix well.

Stir in the chocolate chips.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet.

Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ready For Oven

Bake 8 - 10 minutes, being careful not to over brown.

Remove from cookie sheet and cool on a wire rack.

Yield 16 to 18 cookies.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Easy Baking Recipes, Deserts: Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Brownies

The sour cream makes these brownies nice and moist; the chocolate chips make them sinfully good!

Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Brownies
Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Brownies
1/2 cup butter; melted
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons baking cocoa
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease and flour an 8' x 8" pan.

Melt butter.

Beat the eggs and sugar together until well blended and creamy.Mixing Sugar and Egg

Add butter, mix well.Adding The Butter

To the butter/egg sugar mixture add the cocoa, flour and sour cream. Combine well.
Adding in Flour, Cocoa and Sour Cream
Stir in the chocolate chips.Adding the Chocolate Chips

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, being careful not to over bake.Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Brownies, ready for oven

Let cool on a wire rack 30 minutes before cutting.Out Of The Oven

Yield: 16 Brownies

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Sometimes the craving for meatloaf gets too strong to ignore. Last night was one of those nights!
butter; for greasing the pan
2 large eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 1/2 pounds hamburger
1 medium onion; diced
2 slices bread; toasted and diced
1 tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon mustard powder
4 cloves garlic; minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
salt and pepper; to taste

Preheat oven to 350°F

Grease bottom and sides of a loaf pan with the butter.

In a large bowl beat the eggs and milk with a fork.Mixing Egg and Milk for Meatloaf
Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well, clean hands work the best for mixing.

Place mixture in the loaf pan and bake for about an hour.Meatloaf, ready for oven

Pasta and Egg Scramble

We love pasta and cheese. This is an easy recipe that makes a great meal.
Pasta and Egg Scramble
Pasta and Egg Scramble
1/4 pound spaghetti; uncooked
4 large eggs
3/4 cup cheddar cheese; shredded
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter
1 small onion; sliced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 pound sirloin steak; cut into bite size strips
2 handfuls baby spinach

Ingredients for Pasta and Egg Scramble
Cook pasta according to package directions.

In a medium bowl beat eggs. Add cheese and salt. Mix well and set aside.

Heat butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onions and crushed red pepper and saute until the onions start to become translucent.

Add meat. Stir often until meat is lightly browned.

Mix in cooked pasta. Put the spinach on top of the pasta/meat mixture, then pour egg and cheese over spinach. Mix well and cook until the egg sets.

Serves 2
Cutting the meat for Pasta and Egg Scramble

Monday, April 26, 2010

Starting Seeds

starting seeds
I think I am a bit behind schedule, but I finally got some seeds started today. I have a folding wire rack that came from an old convenience store that I pull out every spring and set up in front of our south facing windows. A friend saves me a few of the plastic containers that salad comes in (I should add that to Household Hints) and I use them as mini greenhouses for the seeds.starting seeds
I also start some in regular small flower pots.

In the next few days we will do more in the greenhouse. I enjoy doing some in the house as well as the greenhouse (I think the ones in the house get more attention!)

Egg and Cheese Breakfast Sandwich

Egg and Cheese Breakfast Sandwich

Grill both sides of 2 slices of buttered bread in a skillet. Fry an egg and put on one slice of bread. Add cheese on top, cover with the other slice of bread and grill for a bit longer to give the cheese a chance to melt a little. Serve hot.

Easy Meals; Pot Roast

Pot Roast

We have no set recipe for making pot roast; every time is different and it always comes out great. The secret is long cooking so the meat is so tender will break away with a fork.

Any size roast will do; we add potatoes, carrots, sweet potato, onions, garlic, whatever we have on hand. We also like to add different seasonings, such as oregano, dried dandelion leaves, thyme, again whatever we have on hand and seems to blend with our other ingredients.

Place your meat in a covered pan; add all your vegetables and herbs/seasonings. Cover everything with water and put in a 350° F oven for about 5 or 6 hours, until the meat falls apart with a fork. Check the water every so often and add more if needed. It is hard to over cook a roast like this, as long as there is enough water in the pan.

The second day we break the meat up small (if there is any left!) and turn the whole thing into a soup. We may add a few more ingredients if needed. Sometimes we add barley or rice.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Household Hints

We love kitchen and household hints. These are a few that we use often, but would love to hear from you if you have more. Please share your favorites!

Household Hints

Rub oil into your measuring cup before measuring honey, the honey will pour right out. This also works well for molasses.

To remove the smell of onions and garlic from your hands, make a paste of vinegar and salt and rub all over your hands. Rinse well with warm water.

Add some salt to boiling water before poaching eggs, it will help set the egg whites.

Chew on citrus peel after eating a garlic-y meal, it will freshen the breath. Cinnamon and whole cloves work as well.

Apple cider makes a nice change from water for steaming vegetables.

Add a pinch or two of salt to the water when boiling hard boiled eggs, they will peel better.

Club soda will remove chocolate stains from clothes, salt will remove wine.

Use beer instead of water or stock to make a great tasting beef stew.

A potato ricer works great for mashing an avocado.

When making a cheese sauce, don't cook at a high temperature, this will make the cheese tough and stringy.

Onions that are too strong to use raw in a salad can be soaked in cold water for an hour or so.

Once a week pour a gallon of boiling water down the kitchen drain to help break up grease and prevent clogs.

It is best to hand wash kitchen knives, even if they can stand the dishwasher, the detergents can pit the blades.

Wiping the shower down with a towel after each use will help keep soap scum from building up.

Add ½ teaspoon of baking soda to every 3 eggs to make a fluffy omelet.

Add a pinch of baking soda to milk when boiling to prevent curdling.

For garlic flavored potato chips, put a peeled clove of garlic in a bag of chips and let sit a few hours.

Add apple cider to a stew for great flavor.

When buying oranges for juice, look for the heaviest ones, normally they contain the most juice.

Orange juice can take the place of wine for cooking fish.

One pound of potatoes will make about 2 cups of mashed potatoes.

Empty wine bottles work well for drying plastic bags.

Use kitchen shears to cut canned tomatoes without removing them from the can; easy and no mess.

4 or 5 medium tomatoes equal one pound.

Remove yeast from the refrigerator about an hour before using, it is less active when cold.

If you let doughnuts stand for about 15 minutes before frying they will absorb less fat.

Shake raisins or other dried fruits in flour before adding them to dough, they won't sink to the bottom of the pan during baking.

You can keep the yokes from crumbing while slicing hard boiled eggs if you keep dipping your knife in clod water.

If possible, keep tomatoes at room temperature, the taste will be much better.

Boiled turnips are sweeter if you don't peel them before boiling.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Herbed Cheese Spread

Herbed Cheese Spread

We are new to cheese making, so we thought we would start out with something easy.

Herbed Cheese Spread

2 quarts whole raw milk
1/3 cup herbal vinegar
salt and herbs; to taste

Heat the milk in a non-reactive sauce pan over medium heat until the temperature reaches 180°F.
Heating The Milk

Reduce heat as low as possible and heat for about 10 minutes longer, keeping the temperature as close to 180°F as possible.

Remove pan from the heat and add the herbal vinegar (we used raspberry) Vinegar for Herbed Cheese Spread
Stir with a slotted stainless steel (or wooded) spoon to incorporate.

Set the pan aside for about 15 minutes to let the milk curdle.

Line a colander with a double thickness of cheesecloth. Place the colander over a larger kettle to catch the whey. (chickens and pigs love this)Cheese Cloth Ready For Milk
Pour the curdled milk into the cheesecloth and let the excess liquid drain through.

Gather the corners of the cheesecloth together and tie into a knot. We hang the bundle from the faucet on the kitchen sink.Draining Cheese

Allow to drip for a few hours.

Remove cheese from cheesecloth and place in a bowl. At this time salt and other herbs can be added to taste.

Chill for a few hours before serving.