Category Archives: Recipies

Why Is My Bread Dough Not Rising

Why Is My Bread Not Rising

Several people have asked my Why Is My Bread Not Rising?  There could be several different answers to this question.

Fall has arrived and winter is around the corner.  There is nothing like the aroma of fresh bread hitting you square in the face as you enter the house.  I love  the whole process of making bread.  Combining the yeast and water, adding flour and seeing it form a dough brings me happiness.

What about those times when nothing seems to go correctly, even if you have made the same bread recipe for the last 34 years.  Here are some reasons why your bread dough doesn’t rise.

Old Dead Yeast:  Inactive dry yeast can live for years.  If your yeast is where the temperature fluctuates this can cause your yeast to die.  So if you find some yeast hiding in the back of the refrigerator just assume it is dead and buy some new yeast.

Yeast is too hot:  Most bread recipes call for the yeast to be added to some type of liquid that has been heated.  If the liquid is too hot, it will kill yeast cells.  When in doubt use a kitchen thermometer to see how hot your liquid is before adding your yeast.

Room is cold or there is a draft:  The room your dough is rising in should be between 75 and 90 degrees.  If your dough sits too long in a cold room or in a draft the yeast will go dormant and die.

Rise Time:  If your dough is taking forever to rise, it could be a cold room or your yeast has died.  Another reason is using whole grain flour which takes longer to rise.  Be patient and let your dough rise.

Pan Size:  Are you using the correct pan size?  Might be your pan is too big for the amount of dough.  8 1/2 x 4 1/2 will hold 3 cups of flour.  9 x 5 pan will hold 4 cups of flour and a 10 x 5 pan will hold 4 1/2 cups of flour.

So your dough didn’t rise.  DON’T throw that dough out.

Roll it out and make flat breads.
Roll out, cut into strips and wrap it around a cooking stick over the campfire and cook.
In your cast iron pan roll out your dough.  Melt butter and spread on top of the dough.  Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top of the butter.  Cook until done.
Roll out as thin as possible and make some crackers.  Add some herbs before baking.

Now go enjoy making some bread.  ENJOY!

Why Is My Bread Dough Not Rising.

Amish Onion Patties

Amish Onion Patties

This is an old recipe but one that you will add to the recipe file once you have made these.  Making onion rings can be somewhat of a hassle.  All that dipping and re-dipping can get very messy.  Not a problem when you make these Amish Onion Patties.

Amish Onion Patties frying in a cast iron skillet.

Amish Onion Patties

1 cup flour
2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 Tablespoon cornmeal
2 1/2 cups chopped onions
1 cup milk
1/2 cup oil for frying
Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, black pepper and cornmeal.
Add the onion and mix.
Add the milk and mix.
Drop by spoonful into the hot oil.  Cook until golden brown.  Turn over and cook the other side.

Amish Onion Patties golden brown.


Amish Onion Patties

Brats and Veggies One Pan Meal

Brats and Veggies One Pan Meal

Pull out your large sheet pan and get ready to throw together a delicious one pan meal that your entire family is going to love.  Easy clean up to go along with a fast and delicious meal to put in front of your family.

Use what veggies you have on hand.  Great way to clean out the refrigerator.  I will share what I used to make this  sheet pan meal but remember you can add what you like and what you have on hand.

Brats (I used Johnsonville Brats and boiled them so they were cooked)
Head of broccoli
Package of mushrooms
1 large onion sliced
Potatoes sliced
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

If you have all your veggies prepped ahead of time it will save you time and energy and make this meal that much faster.

Spread all the veggies on your sheet pan.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Toss to coat.

In a 400 degree pre-heated oven place your sheet pan.  Bake for 30 minutes.

Take out toss and spread out again.  Place your brats on top and return to oven to bake for 15 minutes.  Take out and turn brats over to brown on second side.  Return to oven for 10 more minutes.

Serve immediately.  ENJOY!


Whole Wheat Banana Muffins/Bread

Whole Wheat Banana Muffins/Bread

Starting your morning off right with some type of breakfast is very important.  Honestly I am not a breakfast eater.  Here come the but part.  If you like your morning coffee, tea or hot chocolate well pair it up with a great tasting Whole Wheat Banana Muffin.

Wonderful thing about muffins are the grab and go.  While drinking your hot tea on the way to work or after you get to work, include a muffin.

They are made with whole wheat not that yuck white stuff and no sugar.  Honey replaces the sugar.  Very healthy and makes a great snack for after school or anytime.

Whole Wheat Banana Muffins/Bread

1 cup mashed bananas (3 medium)
1/3 cup oil or melted butter
1/2 cup honey
2 eggs
1 3/4 cup whole wheat flour ( I grind mine fresh and use it immediately, okay if you can’t)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup hot water

Beat oil and honey together.  Add eggs and mix well.  Stir in mashed bananas.

Add all the dry ingredients in the order listed and stir couple time.

Add hot water and mix until smooth.

Bake in a greased loaf pan or muffin pan at 325 degrees for 55 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

May have to reduce time if making muffins.

Cool on wire rack.

These muffins and bread freezes really well.  Make extra now and enjoy later.


Whole Wheat Banana Muffin/Bread

13×9 Sandwich Melts

Sandwich Melts

Needing a really quick and easy meal when there is no time to cook?  This sandwich melt is the perfect solution.

13 x 9 Sandwich Melt

12 rolls split in half ( I used homemade rolls, can us Hawaiian Sweet Rolls)
Sliced Ham
Provolone Cheese
Cream Cheese with onion and chive
6 Tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Fresh parsley chopped

Layer bottom of the rolls with couple of ham slices.

Place provolone cheese on top of ham.

Spread top of the roll with cream cheese onion and chive spread.

Combine the melted butter, parsley and Dijon mustard.  Pour over the top of the sandwiches.

Bake covered with aluminum foil on 350 degrees for 15 minutes.  Remove the foil and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes more or until cheese is melted and roll tops are light brown.

Sandwich Melts



Fruity Baked Oatmeal

Fruity Baked Oatmeal

This fruity baked oatmeal uses fresh or frozen blueberries, peaches and tart apples to really bring out the taste of this baked oatmeal dish.  Serve this for breakfast or let the family have an afternoon snack that you will feel good about feeding them.

Wanting something for your sweet tooth?  Add some ice cream or whipped topping and you have a great dessert.  These fruity baked oatmeal bars are delicious anytime of day or evening.

Fruity Baked Oatmeal

3 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter melted
1/4 cup honey
1 tart apple chopped
1 peach chopped
1/2 cup blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl combine oats, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.

Combine eggs, milk, butter and honey.  Add to dry ingredients and mix.

Stir in apple, peach and blueberries.

Pour into an 8×8 inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.  Knife should come out clean.

ENJOY!  Amish Pancake Recipe  Brown Sugar Honey Baked Oatmeal  Oatmeal Packets Master Mix

Tomato Bacon Jam

Tomato Bacon Jam

Do you love bacon well here is a perfect dip or use it as a topping.  Super easy to throw together.  Makes a wonderful dip or better yet use the Tomato Bacon Jam to top a hamburger, brat or what about a hot dog.

1 1/2 pounds tomatoes
1 pound of bacon cut into 1 inch pieces
1 large yellow onion chopped
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3 Tablespoons water
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Slip the outside skin to your tomatoes by placing them in boiling water for a few minutes.  Plunge them in cold water and remove the skin and core.

Cook bacon.  Remove and drain on paper towels.

Using 3 tablespoons of bacon grease saute the onion until soft.  Add back in the bacon, tomatoes, brown sugar, water, apple cider vinegar, mustard, paprika and red pepper.

Reduce heat and simmer for about 40 minutes or until mixture thickens.

Transfer everything to a blender or food processor and pulse 4 or 5 times.

Store in airtight container in refrigerator up to 5 days.

Summer Time Fruit Drinks

Summer Time Fruit Drinks

During the hot summer months the taste of freshly made fruit drink always hits the spot.  Cold, refreshing, cooling and the taste of fresh fruit makes everything that much better.

Here are some homemade drinks to satisfy your thirst.

TIP:  Pour these into ice pop molds and hand them out.  They won’t last long.

Creamy Pink Lemonade

1 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups (1/2 and 1/2)
5 cups water
1 cup raspberries
1 teaspoon vanilla

Puree raspberries using blender.  Add rest of the ingredients and stir.  Serve cold.   Refrigerate up to 3 days.

cantaloupe Refresher

1 cantaloupe cup into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
6 cups water

Blend cantaloupe until smooth.  Add sugar and stir.  Pour into pitcher.  Add water.  Stir until well mixed.  Serve cold.

Watermelon Refresher

4 cups watermelon slide into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
6 cups water

Blend watermelon until smooth.  Add sugar and stir.  Pour into pitcher.  Add water.  Stir until well mixed.  Serve cold.

Strawberry Delight Drink

5 cups strawberries
1/2 cup sugar
6 cups water

Blend strawberries until smooth.  Add sugar and stir.  Pour into pitcher.  Add water.  Stir until well mixed.  Serve Cold.

Blueberry/Raspberry Swirl Bars

Blueberry/Raspberry Swirl Bars

Here is a wonderful summer treat to make ahead and take to those family gatherings, potlucks and BBQ.  Make this anytime of the year.  Comes together pretty fast and makes a 9×13 pan full of mouth-watering berry flavor deliciousness.


2 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup sugar
9 tablespoons unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter.  Press mixture into bottom of pan.  Bake for 7 minutes.  Cool completely.

Blueberry sauce  and  Raspberry sauce

1 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup water
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon light corn syrup
3/4 teaspoon cornstarch

In a saucepan stir together blueberries, water, sugar, corn syrup and cornstarch.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Reduce heat to low and let mixture cook and thicken for around 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool.

Repeat with the raspberry sauce same as you did with the blueberries.

Cream filling

2 (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup sour cream
3 cups heavy whipping cream

Using your kitchen aid or mixer add cream cheese and confectioners sugar.  Mix until combined.
Add sour cream and mix well.
Add whipping cream.  Start off slow and gradually increase speed of mixer until it thickens.

Spread half of cream filling onto prepared crust.  drizzle with half the blueberry and raspberry sauce.  Top with remaining cream fill.

Spread rest of the blueberry and raspberry sauce on top.  Take a knife and swirl into the cream mixture.

Freeze until firm.  Let stand 15 minutes to soften and serve immediately.  ENJOY!

Blueberry/Raspberry Swirl Bars


Pearl Barley How to Cook/Recipes

Barley How to Cook/Recipes
Barley How to Cook/Recipes

Barley has been overlooked for years.  What is Barley?  Barley is a healthy high fiber, high protein grain.  Cooked barley has a chewy texture and nutty flavor, similar to brown rice.

Pearl Barley is most commonly used.  Now you can find quick cooking or instant barley which cuts down on soaking or cooking time.

Barley can lower cholesterol, reduces risk of coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and colon cancer.

How do I cook Barley?  To cook barley cover 1 cup of barley with 2 cups of water or any type of broth vegetable, chicken or beef.  Bring to a boil and lower to simmer for around 30 to 40 minutes.  Most of the liquid will be absorbed.

Pre-soak Barley.  Cover barley with water or broth and let soak from one hour to over night.  Cooking time is reduced by around 15 minutes if you pre-soak.

What do I do with barley?  Add barley to soups and stews.  Substitute barley in place of rice.  Serve with curry and stir fries.  Eat barley in place of oatmeal for breakfast.  Add some brown sugar, maple syrup to barley and enjoy a warm breakfast.

Here are two wonder dishes using Pearl Barley.

Vegan Barley Casserole

3 Tablespoons butter
1 onion chopped
2 celery ribs chopped
1 cup mushrooms sliced
1 bell pepper chopped
1 cup pearl barley
2 cups vegetable broth (or any type of broth)
1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper

Melt butter in a large skillet.  Add onion, celery, mushrooms and peppers.  Stir and cook until soft.  Add pearl barley, salt and pepper.  Stir to combine.

Pour in broth and bring to a boil.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Pour into casserole dish.  Cover dish .  Bake 30 minutes.  Uncover dish and bake for 15 more minutes.  Most of the liquid will be absorbed.

Barley Risotto

2 garlic cloves minced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cup mushrooms sliced
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/2 cup barley
3 cups vegetable broth ( any kind broth)
1/3 cup ricotta cheese
1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper

Soak barley for an hour or over night.  Drain any left over water off of barley.

In a pan bring vegetable broth to a boil.

In a large skillet add garlic and olive oil.  Cook for 1 minutes.  Add mushrooms and cook until soft.   Add salt and pepper.

Add barley and boiling vegetable broth to skillet.  Cook until almost all the liquid is absorbed.  Should take 20 to 30 minutes.  Stir often so doesn’t stick.

Stir in risotto.  Mix and serve.  ENJOY!