Not Quite The Farmers Daughter

Not Quite The Farmers Daughter

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Biscotti

There is nothing better than hot coffee and some yummy spice cookies to dip!  October is almost here and it's getting to be pumpkin "everything time"!  Here in Central Ohio, October is a big month for flavor.  In Circleville there is the Pumpkin Show and in Groveport there is Apple Butter Day.  Wow! Talk about both being mouth watering experiences of sugar and spice and everything nice!  If you are going to be in Ohio in October, I would encourage to you look up both festivals.  They have great homespun crafts and music too. 

So with that said, my cookie recipe for our Happy Hump Day Comfort Series, week #4 is Pumpkin Spice Biscotti.  What a wonderful treat!

Pumpkin Spice Biscotti

3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3  teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup mashed canned pumpkin
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 (6oz) bag of white chocolate chips for melting

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice in a large bowl; stir well. In another bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, and vanilla, stirring well with a wire whisk. Slowly add pumpkin mixture to flour mixture, stirring until dry ingredients are moistened. (Mixture will be very crumbly; it will gradually become moist after stirring.)  Knead or gently stir cooled nuts into dough. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and divide into 4 portions. Lightly flour hands and shape each portion into a 1 x 15" long log. Place logs 3" apart on lightly greased cookie sheets. Bake for 23 minutes; cool logs 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300. Cut each log diagonally into 1/2" slices using a serrated knife. Place slices on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool completely on wire racks
When cooled, melt white chocolate chips in a double boiler over medium heat until smooth.  Take a spoon and drizzle over your cooled biscotti and let dry.

These look great in clear cellophane bags tied with a colorful ribbon to give as a gift to someone...that is, if you don't eat them all first!


Monday, September 26, 2011

Happy Fall Snacking! Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dip and Caramel Apple Candy Mix

Many of us have high energy children that require lots and lots of nutrition.  I don't know about you, but my grocery bill now that I have a teenage boy in my mist is crazy!  So I am always looking for ways to make snacks stretch for the least amount of money, this can be quite the challenge, especially when you want to keep things on the healthy side. 

My son is known for his sweet tooth.  He could devour a large bag of peanut butter cups every day after school if I would let him.  He enjoys the traditional fall favorite of apple slices and caramel apple dip, but it's not always portable enough for him with his sport packed lifestyle.  So I made a play on a simple snack my mom to this day still makes.  Candy corn and peanuts.  It has the sweet that my son loves with a nice little pack of protein and fiber from the peanuts.  Another plus, you can really make this stretch!

3 12oz bags caramel apple candy corns
1 12 oz can of skinned, salted peanuts

Mix together in a bowl and you are ready to go!  For a party or just for kids on the go, fill medium sized wax paper bags half way with this yummy treat!  This will help with serving sizes so no one just sits down and eats a whole bowl, which is very easy to do!

Another fun and easy dip is anything made with pudding.  You can take the following recipe and change it up to suit your needs.  This is great for any party or afternoon sweet tooth craving!

3.4oz box of pumpkin spice pudding made according to pie directions
12 oz whipped topping thawed
8oz cream cheese softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
chocolate graham crackers for dipping

Take pudding made to package directions for a pie, let setup for about 10mins in the fridge.  Whip in cream cheese and peanut butter, no lumps.  Then fold in whipped topping until mixed through.  Back in the fridge for at least an hour to let flavors mix.  Serve with chocolate graham crackers for added flavor and crunch.  This is also yummy with sliced apples or cut up celery!


Sunday, September 25, 2011

Leftovers...bring on the next meal! Curry Mash

Leftovers are always an area of contention in our house like many others. I can only eat the same thing for a couple of days.  My husband on the other hand can eat the same thing everyday all day long and then my son, "don't even think of feeding me leftovers".  So as a mom, leftovers become an art form when it comes to creative meal preparation

The best thing about leftovers for me is how to challenge the creative part of my mind.  Especially when it begins in the early hours of the morning.  For example, this morning was our traditional Sunday morning Farmer's Breakfast, bacon, eggs, biscuits, fried curried potatoes and, for extra fall kick, fried cinnamon apples.  Can we say, "MMMmm, mmm Good!"  Since this morning was a hurried morning with my husband going to work, we ended  up with quite a bit of leftover curried potatoes.  All I could think about was that wonderful sweet curry smell and how I wanted to have it for dinner.  Hmmm, what to do, what to do?  Off to the fridge to check out what else is leftover and where this road is going to take me.   Let's see, some chicken broth, shredded chicken, misc frozen veggies...sounds like a meal to me!  I decided to call this Curry Mash.  Using the same pan I cooked the curry potatoes in makes the broth/sauce for this extra wonderful!

3 cups leftover curried home fries
3 1/2 cups chicken broth/stock
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup frozen okra
1 medium can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup shredded chicken
salt and pepper to taste

Over medium heat add the chicken broth to your pan that you originally cooked your curried home fries in, the dripping will give you lots of flavor to your broth.  Cook until it comes to a simmer.  Mash your left over home fries and add to the broth mixing well.  Add your frozen veggies, mushrooms and season with your salt and pepper to taste.  Let simmer until it thickens to your liking and veggies are heated through.

This is wonderful as a stand alone soup.  Or thicken and serve over rice, more mashed/smashed potatoes or even noodles.


Friday, September 23, 2011

Food Poisoning, let's avoid it! Here is Food Temp 101

I think we all have had that unfortunate circumstance of having food poisoning or know someone who has at some point in our lives.  When eating out it come sometimes be hard to determine if the food you are getting ready to devour has been properly handled or fully cooked.  Here in Central Ohio the Health Department has visual rating on all the entrances to local eateries.  This lets you know if there are any problems with food management or environmental management.  That one wonderful and quick way to avoid a food poisoning experience.  Most of the time it's not that simple.  It can be anything from a food preparer not washing hands to poor temperature control regarding food storage. 

So I have compiled a list of proper temperatures for different meats that could possibly make you or someone you know quite ill.  Remember to always wash hands when handling any raw foods and in between handling different foods so not to cross contaminate.  To avoid being the cause of any food poisoning mishaps as the chef, besides hand washing, definitely invest in a meat thermometer.  There are many different kinds to fit all levels cooking expertise as well as your wallet.

I saw the following poster on, and I just had to share it with you!

Beef, lamb, duck breast, and veal steaks, chops, and roasts (USDA minimum: 145F) *
Raw Less than 125F (52C) Bright purple-red, cool, stringy, slightly juicy
Rare 125-130F (52-54C) Red center, warm, tender, juicy
Medium rare 130-140F (54-60C) Pink center, warm, firm, can be juicy
Medium 140-150F (60-66C) Tan with hints of pink, firm, not very juicy
Medium well 150-160F (66-71C) Tan center, firm to tough, little juice
Well done more than 160F (71C) Tan to brown center, tough, little juice
Ground meats, burgers, meat loaf, and sausages (USDA minimum 160F)
Safe 160F (71C) or more Tan-brown (no sign of pink)
Pork steaks, chops, and roasts (USDA minimum: 160F)
Raw Less than 125F (52C) Bright pink center, cool, stringy, slightly juicy
Rare 125-130F (52-54C) Pale pink center, warm, tender, very juicy
Medium rare 130-140F (54-60C) Creamy with a slight pink tinge, tender, juicy
Medium 140-150F (60-66C) Cream colored, firm, slightly pink juices
Well done more than 150F (66C) Cream colored, firm to tough, clear juices
Pork ribs, pork shoulders, and beef brisket cooked low and slow at 225F **
Tender and juicy 190F (88C) Pale white to tan center, tender, clear juices
Pre-cooked ham and hot dogs
Safe 140F (60C) Purple-pink meat
Turkey (USDA minimum: 165F)
Safe and moist 165F (74C) Cream colored, tender, clear juices
Chicken (USDA minimum: 165F)
Safe and moist 165F (74C) Cream colored, tender, clear juices
Fish (USDA minimum: 145F)
Medium 135F (57C) Slightly translucent meat, flakes easily
Well done 145F (63C) Opaque, pearly meat
Unpasteurized eggs (USDA minimum: 160F)

Safe cooking everyone!!
160F (71C)

Solid yolks

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Happy Hump Day! Let's Get Comfortable Series Week #3

Happy Hump Day!!! That means just two days until Friday! I don't know about you, but as always the week just can't go fast enough.  Today is an extra special day in our house, my hubby is celebrating his birthday today.  So with our annual festiveness, it's all about Dad today and all of his comfort cravings.  This most likely will be ice cream cake and anything from pizza to potato soup.  So in his honor today I am sharing his favorite Fall soup recipe.  This is one of those comfort soups that fills you up and keeps you feeling warm and fuzzy all day long!  I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Dad's Favorite Mashed Potato and Bacon Chowder
1-2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
1 bag, 32 oz frozen cubed hash brown potatoes
1 bag, 12 oz frozen mixed veggies with okra
5 cups chicken stock or  broth
1 bunch Chopped green onion
½ lb bacon fried and crumbled, reserve 2 tbsp of bacon dripping
3 cups heavy cream (use more if you want extra creamy)
1 1/2 cups Shredded Colby/Monterey Jack Marble cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
3 tbsp Arrowroot or cornstarch (if using starch dissolve in some room temp broth before adding to soup) 
1tbsp Garlic powder
Sea salt to taste
Ground pepper to taste
1/2 tsp Chipotle chili powder  (optional, but gives great flavor) 
Small sprinkle of cayenne pepper (optional but gives depth to the soup)
Olive oil and 3 tbsp butter

In soup pot coat bottom with olive oil, butter and 1 tbsp bacon rendering (optional), heat on medium.  Add seasonings and warm until fragrant, add frozen veggies and arrowroot(cornstarch).  Add 3 cups of chix broth and cook on medium high until veggies are thawed.  Once thawed add mashed potatoes and rest of chicken broth.  Add bag of cubed hash browns and put heat on medium.  Add bacon and 1 ½ cups cream.  Heat through.  Taste and season accordingly.  Once all heated through and potatoes soft, add green onion, cheese and sour cream.  Heat until thickened slightly and serve. 

This is a great recipe to double and put in a crock pot for a big family gathering.  Serve sides of croutons, extra crumbled bacon, shredded cheese and chopped green onion.  Great to make the day after Thanksgiving when you have a ton of leftovers and can serve with toasted turkey sandwiches!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pumpkin Cream Puffs to make your day wonderful!

I am dedicating today's Blog to my mom, Queen of the traditional whipped cream puff drizzled with chocolate! I can remember as a little girl these wonderful delicacies made by my mom.  My sister and I would watch her stir the glistening dough on the stove and turn these little dough mounds into a sinful delight filled with real whipped cream and covered in chocolate...makes my mouth water just thinking about them!  So now it's my turn as mom to create wonderful memories through sweets and treats for my family.  So I have made my own cream puff creation for Fall.  Cream puffs filled with a creamy and fluffy pumpkin filling and drizzled with a maple cream glaze.  It sounds complicated, but it's one of the simplest desserts you will ever make.

The Puff

1 cup water
1 stick butter (do not use margarine)
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
4 eggs

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  You will bake your puffs for 10 mins at this temperature, then turn heat down to 375 degrees for 15-20mins or until puffs are golden brown.  If you take them out of the oven and they quickly start to deflate, lower your oven temp to 325 and bake for an additional 5-10mins, keeping watch over them.  Weather such as high humidity will play with your puffs.  Once out of the oven transfer to a wire rack and cut open tops to let steam escape and cool before filling.

Using a pot over medium heat, pour in water and add butter.  Bring to a boil.

Now add your flour, salt and sugar.  Stir until dough starts to ball up.

Remove from heat and quickly stir in one egg at a time until dough becomes shiny.

Once all your eggs are stirred into the dough.  Use an ice cream scoop or large spoon and place 6 large dollops of dough on your cookie sheet.  I use non stick foil to cover my cookie sheet and prevent sticking without burning.

Pumpkin Cream Filling

1 3.4oz pkg pumpkin spice pudding (usually available in the Fall and around Holidays)
1 3/4 c milk
8 oz whipped topping

In bowl mix together pudding and milk blending thoroughly.  If you can't find pumpkin spice pudding mix, you can use butterscotch or vanilla with pumpkin pie spice added.  Let chill for about 15mins in the fridge.  Now fold in 8oz of whipped topping and place back in the fridge until ready to fill your puffs.

Maple Cream Glaze

1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 tbsp cream
1/2 tsp vanilla
1tbsp real maple syrup

Mix together all ingredients and let sit to the side until you put your puffs together.

Enjoy your little piece of pumpkin heaven!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Tip of the week: Fall Garden Clean Out

As many of us know the our gardens are coming to an end.  This is a great time to begin cleaning out your garden for winter.  Currently I still have tomatoes growing, but I know as soon as the first frost hits they will be done for the year.  So what I would suggest is start cutting back over grown herbs that have gone to seed, start cutting down your sunflower stalks that the birds have picked free and clean out vining plants like cucumbers and zucchini that appear to have completed all their production.  If you do composting put all this plant material in your composter, it will make a nutrient rich compost to mix in your soil for the next planting season.

Here are some additional tips you might consider if you have a large backyard garden:

The following is an easy list of things to do:
  • Rake leaves. Left on the lawn, they will cut off sunlight to the grass and trap moisture, encouraging fungus diseases. But don't discard them if you have a place to start a compost pile. Shredded and broken down for a few months, they are prime organic matter to improve your soil.
  • Spread finished compost on perennial, vegetable beds or on the lawn to enrich the soil and make room for the new crop of leaves. Half-finished compost should go back in the pile with the new leaves as well as old annual, perennial and vegetable plants.
  • Weeds may die when frost hits, but their seeds survive in the soil. So pull all you see and discard them in the compost or put them into the landscape waste.
  • Tidy up. Any plant you suspect might be diseased should go in the landscape waste including diseased tree and shrub leaves. Otherwise, removing the stalks and foliage of perennials is a matter of taste: Cut them down if you are the neat type, or leave them if you like the look. Most people leave ornamental grasses standing.
  • Clear out the vegetable garden.
  • Put diseased plants in the landscape waste and the rest in the compost. Dig composted manure or other organic matter into the vegetable bed so by spring it will be nicely broken down in the soil. And once you've tidied up, plant your winter crops.

If you are someone that does a container gardening make sure to take out all dead plant material and dirt.  You will want to wash out your pots and store them for next year.  When doing container gardens you will want fresh dirt every year to ensure healthy growth of your new plants and seeds.

Have a great week!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Busy mom, quick and easy meal to feed the masses!

What a gorgeous Saturday in Central Ohio! Nothing better than a crisp fall day and Ohio State Buckeye football!  Since we are doing a night game tonight our house is bustling with the sounds of housework and lawn mowing.  Now my men are HUNGRY and want fed NOW! Nothing spells quick and easy more than soup and sandwiches that are filled with true "stick to your ribs" ingredients.

Lean ground beef and ground sausage are staples in my freezer.  Check out my earlier Blog about stocking a Fall Pantry for ideas on what to keep on hand for fast and easy meals.

Sloppy Joe Sandwiches

3lbs ground beef browned and drained
3 18oz cans Manwich Bold Sloppy Joe Sauce
American Cheese slices
Toasted hamburger buns

You can imagine why I like this, just mix your meat and sauce, pile on the bun, add cheese and you need nothing but some lip smacking and a napkin to clean up your saucy smiled family and friends!

Sausage Chili Soup

1lb pork sausage browned
4 cups beef broth
29oz can tomato sauce
14oz can diced tomatoes
11 oz can Delmonte Summer Crisp corn
21 oz can Bush's Grillin Beans, Black Bean Fiesta flavor
2/3 cup orzo pasta

Use a pot to brown your sausage in, once brown add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a simmer for about 20mins or until orzo is soft.  Then serve with your Sloppy Joe's! 

What a great combination on a cool weekend day! It's fast and easy and your family will love it!


Friday, September 16, 2011

Fall Kitchen Clean Out and Stock Up

Well the weekend is here!  So what are your plans for the weekend?  Most people are busy with football Friday night and Saturday college game day tailgates.  But by chance if your favorite team isn't playing or you just have that urge to purge....this weekend is as good as any to get started!

Twice a year, usually around the season change or time change, I clean out the house.  In the Spring it's looking around the house to de-clutter and clean out closets.  In the Fall it's all about switching out the Summer attire to the cool weather attire.  And of course, the BIG refrigerator clean out and pantry reorganization and winter restock.  I find that the months going into the holidays we tend to entertain a little more than normal.  Grilling out once the weather changes isn't always convenient, so I like to have ingredients ready for a yummy comfort meal for guests that show up for a visit.

Cleaning out the refrigerator is something that should be done, in my opinion, a couple times a year when it comes to a total removal of everything for inspection.  I do a weekly clean out for leftovers that may be done whether anyone wants to eat them or not.  Wiping down shelves and bins keeps your fridge smelling good and keeps any bacteria growth to a minimum.  It is also a great time to get rid of out dated condiments that might make you or someone else sick.  Doing this will help you manage your fridge space much better and you will find that it is easier to have space available when you need it.

There are many ways that you can stock your pantry.  One thing that I do when stocking my pantry is sit down and write out names of recipes that I make often and recipes that I like to make when I have pop in guests.  If you think this might work for you, write down the ingredients you will need and make sure you have enough in your pantry to make two of everything.  Here is a list of some staple items you might want to consider having on hand all the time.

Flours – unbleached white, wheat, rice, cake
Sugars – brown, cane, powdered, turbinado or demerara
Dry Pastas – a few different shapes and sizes
Grains – couscous, rice(white, brown and wild), barley, oats, cornmeal
Oils – olive oil, canola oil, coconut oil, peanut oil, sesame oil
Vegetables – onions, potatoes, garlic
Canned/Jarred Tomatoes – sauce, diced, stewed, paste
Spreads – peanut, almond & hazelnut butters, jam, jelly
Natural Sweeteners – honey, maple syrup
Vinegars – balsamic, white, red wine, apple cider, rice wine
Specialty Sauces – hot sauce, Tabasco, oyster sauce, mirin, rice wine, soy sauce
Nuts – almonds, walnuts, pecans, pine nuts, coconut
Dried Fruit – raisins, apricots, dates, cherries, cranberries
Dried or Canned Beans- black, navy, pinto, kidney
Canned fish/seafood - tuna, salmon, clams, sardines, anchovies
Specialty Items – artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, olives
Herbs and Spices – oregano, basil, parsley, rosemary, cumin, peppers and many more
Salts – kosher, sea salt, pickling salt, rock salt
Baking Ingredients – baking powder, baking soda, yeast, cream of tartar, chocolate
Extracts – vanilla, almond, lemon, peppermint
Beverages- coffee, tea, cocoa
Stock- boxed chicken, beef and vegetable broth

Some things to keep stocked in your freezer include any kind of cut up fresh veggies and fruit.  Great for quick soups or pies!

Thank Heavens for the Weekend!!

Welcome to Friday everyone!!! We finally made it through another week and I have no doubt that I am not the only one completely exhausted!  I thought and thought about what I wanted to bring to everyone today, but I felt after such a long week and feeling my brain just cramp from all work it's done, I would just keep it to KISS. Keep It Simple for Saturday!

Who feels like cooking on a Saturday morning after the hustle and bustle of a long week.....well I do! Cooking has always been a great source of stress relief for me.  Much like running 12 miles is to an active runner, I could cook for 12 hours and feel the same satisfaction.

So here it goes for my Saturday morning simple luxury food that is cheap to make but feels so glamorous on the palate.

Hot Ham and Cheddar Scones with Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice! What is great about this recipe is you can buy the ham already chunked up at the store and the cheese already shredded.

2 c all purpose flour
1 tbsp sugar (I like to use about 2 tsp raw sugar when I can instead, adds more flavor)
1 tbsp baking powder
1 1/4 tsp kosher salt (but 1/2 tsp regular salt will do)
1 stick unsalted butter, chilled and diced into small pieces, plus 2 tbsp butter melted for brushing the tops after they come out of the oven
2/3 c heavy cream, plus some for brushing before putting in the oven
1 cup grated cheddar cheese (tastes amazing if you can find white cheddar)
1 cup cubed ham (cubes or pieces should be small)
fresh ground pepper to taste

The trick to a tender scone is not to over mix your batter.  Heat your oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowel combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt using a pastry blender or two knives (use scissor method), cut mix until it is crumbly. Stir in 2/3 cup heavy cream. Add ham, cheese and pepper.  Gently knead with your hands to mix cheese and ham through forming a ball.  Then flatten on a foil covered baking sheet until about 1 inch thick disk.  Cut into quarters.  Brush with leftover heavy cream to coat and pop in the oven for about 30mins or until golden.  Brush with melted butter when they come out and they will be ready to serve!

Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice

How many oranges will depend on how many people you are serving.  So you can either go the easy way and go to your local Whole Foods Store and buy it already squeezed or get that juicer out that you never thought you would use!  About 5lbs of oranges will serve about 2-3 people depending on how much they will drink.  Me, I am a cheater....I buy it already juiced at the local organic store!


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: What a chilly morning! Let's Warm It Up!

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: What a chilly morning! Let's Warm It Up!: Fall has definately settled into Central Ohio this morning. Chilly, gray and rainy is the weather recipe of the day. I have definately fel...

What a chilly morning! Let's Warm It Up!

Fall has definately settled into Central Ohio this morning.  Chilly, gray and rainy is the weather recipe of the day.  I have definately felt the tug of the blankets trying to lull me back into a lazy slumber.  Unfortunately duty calls and time to get my husband and son off to work and school.  And time for mom to get some things done around the house before heading to work.  But not before I take my time out before enduring a chaotic day and feeding this hungry soul with some well deserved comfort food!

So this morning it's time to break out some baked eggs, crusty bread and sweet curry potatoes!

Baked Eggs

1/2 tsp butter
1 egg
1 tsp whipping cream
salt and pepper
minced fresh basil or chives

Prepare a 6oz ramekin or custard cup with the 1/2 tsp butter. Break egg gently into prepared ramekin.  Sprinkle to taste with salt and pepper. Pour 1 tsp cream over egg.  Place ramekin in a shallow pan with 1 1/4 inches of water in the bottom and bake at a preheated temperature of 350 for 25mins or until egg is set.  Top with your fresh basil or chives when ready to serve.

I usually always have boiled potatoes and eggs in the fridge ready to be used.  My husband absolutely LOVES potato salad.  And he also LOVES curried potatoes.  So I started making this dish for him a couple of years ago and it finds it way to our table for breakfast or dinner!

2-3 Large potatoes pre-boiled until soft but not mushy, they will need to be cubed
2 tbsp butter
2 tsp sweet curry powder
salt and pepper to taste
smoked chipotle powder (optional

Heat a skillet on medium heat and add butter until it melts coating the bottom of your skillet.  When the butter starts to bubble add your curry, salt and pepper (and chipotle powder) to warm in the butter.  The warming of the spices really releases some great aromas and flavor!  Add your potatoes and cook until they are golden brown or a little crisp depending on how you like them.

*I purchase all my spices from Check out their website and see if they have a location near you. It's well worth the trip!

So now I will finish my creation off with some crusty butter bread and some Chai Tea....oohh so good!


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Happy Hump Day!....Let's Get Comfortable Series

Happy Hump Day everyone!!!! I decided that Wednesday deserves to be a day of comfort because it's the middle of the week and we all need a break in the middle.  Let's just take a moment to let out that BIG *sigh* and concentrate on what makes us comfy and happy!

One of my favorite comfort meals as a child was breakfast for dinner.  I remember my mom making chip beef on toast, scrambled eggs and, one of my personal favorites, PANCAKES!!!!  I can say this has to be one of the most comfort giving foods I have ever experienced.  Adding fruit or nuts is what our mom's and grandmothers often did to make our mouths water.  Now it's not just about fruit and nuts, but adding in proscuitto and asparagus drizzled with Hollendaise sauce.  Other pancake dishes include making pancake sandwiches.  The Wig Wam in Canal Winchester, Ohio is known for their wonderful Pancake Record Sandwich, two HUGE pancakes with bacon and eggs sandwiched in the middle drizzled with hot melting butter and maple syrup....oooo yummy!

Today I thought I would share my recipe.  My mom used to make these pancakes for me as a little girl and when I got old enough I started adding to it to make it my own.  Now my son's friends ask to spend the night on the weekends just because they know they will have a wonderful pancake breakfast to enjoy the next morning.

Mama Worley's Old Fashioned Flapjacks

3 eggs
1 c all purpose flour
3tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tbsp wheat germ
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c buttermilk
2 tbsp butter melted

In large bowl beat eggs until fluffy. Add flour, baking powder, salt and both sugars.  Beat until smooth.  Add wheat germ, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla and buttermilk and butter.  Stir in until smooth, don't over mix.  Heat your griddle/skillet, throw on more butter to give your cakes some crust and use a 1/4 cup measure for your batter....or larger if you want bigger pancakes.  Flip once the batter starts to make bubbles on the top.  Cook until golden.

Mixed Berry Syrup

Take two cups berries and mash in a pan.  Add 1 c sugar and heat over medium heat.  Can turn up to medium high and cook until mixture thickens and bubbles. Pour through a strainer and add 1tsp vanilla.  Serve over your cakes and add fresh berries and nuts.  If not sweet enough after mixture thickens add some powdered sugar.  Pour over your hot flapjacks and sprinkle with extra berries.  Ohhh sooo good!


Monday, September 12, 2011

OLD HOUSE KITCHEN: Gooseberry Patch Review and a Giveaway: Caramel Crunch Apple Pie

Wonderful Gooseberry Cookbook Giveaway!!! Head on over to the Old House Kitchen and take a look!
OLD HOUSE KITCHEN: Gooseberry Patch Review and a Giveaway: Caramel Crunch Apple Pie

Happy Monday! Let's start our weekend planning today!

Just because it's Monday doesn't mean we can't have a weekend frame of mind! I don't know about you but I am just a planner at heart.  And really, thinking about the weekend on Monday really helps my week go fast most of the time.  Yes, I am still on my Halloween kick! I am a little disappointed that I did not get my decorating completely done yet, but I did get our mums planted this weekend with the help of my hubby! 

So this week I am starting off with some craft ideas as well as some Fall health tips. 

I pulled this link to the Centers for Disease Control.  It has some great helpful hints and tips to prepare yourself for the season change and the Flu season which is not far off.

Pumpkin People, how fun to dress up and place in your front yard!  Now is a great time to look over your front yard and figure out what space or spaces you might want to decorate.  Hit the local thrift stores for costume items for any of your Halloween needs.  Also, a lot of your craft stores already have Halloween decorations marked down because crafters have to work well ahead of the season. 



Halloween decorations can be as easy as making a snowman. The Stack Family can be on hand to greet all your guests.
What you need:
  • Pumpkins in graduated sizes: small, medium and large
  • Wooden chopsticks
  • Children-size Halloween costumes or old clothes
Make it
  1. Build and stabilize each pumpkin stack by pushing three chopsticks into each pumpkin and attaching to the pumpkin below it.
  2. Dress pumpkins in costumes.
Always supervise and assist young children when they are working with scissors or small pieces of craft materials.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: It's a Tailgate Party!!!!! GO BUCKS!

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: It's a Tailgate Party!!!!! GO BUCKS!: No matter who your favorite college or NFL team may be, there is always reason to have a great tailgate party! Some history of the infamous...

It's a Tailgate Party!!!!! GO BUCKS!

No matter who your favorite college or NFL team may be, there is always reason to have a great tailgate party!  Some history of the infamous tailgate beginnings go all the way back to when the Green Bay Packer fans coined the actual term "tailgating" during the teams first year in business in 1919. Back in the day, the fans would back their pickup trucks around the field and fold down their tailgates for seating. Naturally, food and beverages were brought along to keep the fans happy. 

My favorite cool weather tailgate menus most often include a hug pot of chili, spiced apple cider and anything with Buffalo sauce! So in honor of all those wonderful college games this weekend, including my personal favorite, THE OSU BUCKEYES!  GOOOOO BUCKS! THIS IS FOR YOU!

Buffalo Buckeye Balls (These can be made the night before and put in the fridge and fried before the big game)
  • 3 large cans chicken breast drained and pulled apart with a fork 
  • 1/4 cup Buffalo sauce (recommended: Frank's Red Hot Buffalo Sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1 3/4 cups sharp or mild Cheddar
  • 1/4 cup freshly sliced scallions (optional)
  • 1 cups flour
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs 
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
Have oil heated to 350 degrees F.
Drain chicken from cans and place in a large bowl.  Use fork to pull apart. Add the hot sauce, pepper, cheese, and scallions, mix gently to combine. Roll the chicken into 2-ounce balls, about the size of a golf ball. Place the flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Roll each ball in the flour, then the egg and then the bread crumbs. Set aside. When the oil is hot fry the chicken balls in batches. Cook for about 2 minutes per batch. Remove the chicken to paper towel lined plate to drain any excess oil.

Serve with Blue Cheese dressing or Ranch dressing.


Tell me about your favorite Tailgate experience or food!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Let's Get It On.....the Soup that is!

Today's post is dedicated to Oma, my soup loving friend! More gray and rain in our weather here in Central Ohio today which begs for some wonderfully rich tasting soup!  Soup is a great and easy way to fill an empty belly or multiple empty bellies in your home.  As we head into the winter months there is nothing better than a wonderful rib sticking stew or old fashioned chicken soup to soothe the weary soul.

Here is a versatile recipe that is quick and easy and will fill up your family in friends in no time!  Serve with some crusty bread or just plain crackers.  The best thing about this recipe is you can change it up and add or omit ingredients.

Tomato and Wild Rice Chowder

15oz can tomato sauce (plain)
14.5 oz can diced tomato (I used RedGold Chili Ready to some extra kick)
12oz pkg frozen vegies, soup mix style with okra
2 cups chicken stock  (don't have stock, use chicken boullion diluted in water)
1 cup cooked brown rice/wild rice mix
salt and pepper to taste

Mix the first four ingredients together in your soup pan over medium heat until warmed through, then add seasoning and rice.  Warm and serve!


Options: Use tomato sauce, diced tomatoes (plain), add 1-2 cups milk or 1 cup cream, a sprinkle of garlic powder and 1-2tsp dried basil.  Heat and serve with some parmesean cheese.

Don't have tomato sauce or diced tomatoes but you do have pasta sauce....just add milk, or add some chicken broth, cooked sausage and some cooked orzo for an Italian soup twist!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Happy Hump Day....Let's Get Comfortable!

Hopefully for all of you that work you survived your first work day back after the long holiday!  I know my work place was less than pleasant and anything that could be a crisis seemed to find a path to me.  So I decided to make this short week seem a little less long.  We woke up to cool, gray, rainy weather this morning.  The kind of morning you just want to snuggle back down into your favorite blankets and stay in your jammies.  With this thought in mind, but the realization that I still have to go to work, I decided that today called for a comfort food dinner tonight! And what doesn't scream comfort food but a casserole with all your favorite ingredients!

Mama Worley's Noodle Doodle

1lb pasta noodles prepared according to pkg
1 10 3/4 oz can of cream of celery soup
1 10 3/4 oz can of cream of mushroom soup
1 10 3/4 oz can of cream of chicken soup
1 12oz pkg frozen vegies - your choice, I used vegetable soup mix with okra
3/4 cup sour cream
1 cup milk
3-4 cups cubed meat, I used leftover pork chops that I grilled over the holiday weekend
3-4 drops hot sauce (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
Cheese....and lots of it!

Prepare a 13x9x2 casserole dish/baking dish with cooking spray, in a small bowel combine soups, milk, sour cream, seasoning and hot sauce if using. Mix well and set aside.  Drain your noodles and layer on the bottom of your dish.  Then layer your vegies (I put them in the middle so my son won't judge the dish before he tries it just because it consists of vegies), and last layer on the meat.  Pour over your soup mixture using a spoon to smooth it over the dish evenly.  Cover with cheese and bake at 350 for 30mins or until your cheese is nice and melty.  This is even husband and teen proof if they can operate an oven safely and react to a timer :)

You can make this dish with any type of meat and it can be made ahead (mine is ready to bake for dinner tonight in the fridge) or even frozen to be baked at a later date.  I would recommend if freezing using it within a month of making it for the best taste.  You can even make this with all vegetables or fish.


What is your favorite comfort dish?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: Fall is coming!

Not Quite The Farmer's Daughter: Fall is coming!: Ahhhhhhhh! Finally some cooler weather is here! I have to say it was wonderful that the last two mornings getting up to a crisp breeze. I h...

Fall is coming!

Ahhhhhhhh! Finally some cooler weather is here! I have to say it was wonderful that the last two mornings getting up to a crisp breeze.  I hauled out some Halloween decorations, just to get myself started into the season of pumpkins.  I can't remember being so excited for a season change before.....I think it has a lot to do with how hot this summer was for all of us.  Football season is here and so is tailgate food!

What is your favorite Tailgate Food?  I look forward to all the traditional hot wings and pigs in a blanket, but there are a few old standbys that from the time I was a kid until now I just can't get enough of when the pigskin season hits!  Grape Jelly Meatballs and Horse Radish Wraps.

Grape Jelly Meatballs

1 bag of frozen meatballs
1 large jar of grape jelly
2 jars chili sauce

Mix jelly and chili sauce together and pour over meatballs in a crockpot.  Cook on high until heated through then turn down to low.

Horse Radish Wraps

1 pkg Budding Roast Beef slices
1 pkg cream cheese softened (plain)
1/2 cup horse jarred horse radish

Mix together cream cheese and horse radish.  You can add less horse radish if you want less of a kick.  Take a small spoonful and place in the middle of the beef slice and fold to encase the cheese.  Use the toothpicks to hold together.  Refridgerate for at least an hour before serving.

Now is also a great time to start thinking about what bulbs you are going to plant for the spring. Clean up flower beds and your summer garden.  It's also a great time to start scoping out where you want to divide your Hostas and plant some mums. I have started on some of this, but need to get going before time gets away from me.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Labor Day Weekend....Mmmmm What to Eat??

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

I thought I would start with the definition of Labor Day.  It's been a long time since Mr. Snepp's 8th Grade History Class back at Woodward Park MS and I needed a refresher. And I couldn't help but think about what this definition says and what the reality of our current economic situation really is for those of us in the middle class and lower middle class.  So I am dedicating my weekend cookout menu to those of us who work hard but have to stay on a budget!  So I have looked in the cupboards and freezer and this is what I have come up with:

Pulled Pork sandwiches (pork roast from the freezer)
Potato Salad
Hot dogs
Macaroni and Cheese
Baked Beans

The best part is you can make all of these dishes into other dishes once your cookout is over.  One thing my husband loves are what I call Campfire Scrambled Eggs.  The next morning  scramble some eggs in a bowl and sit aside, cut up your extra hotdogs, put a tab of butter in a hot pan and add the dogs.  Let them brown a little then add your eggs.  When eggs are cooked, I add a slice of cheese if there is any left and take some warm baked beans and put those on top and serve with toast.  Mmmm so very good!

Another idea, add some pulled pork to the mac and cheese, great for a quick dinner :)  Be creative with your leftovers, they will go fast and give you meals for a couple says past your cookout!