Monthly Archives: August 2015

Corn Dogs Homemade

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Homemade Corn Dogs

Ingredients needed to make Homemade Corn Dogs.

IMG_08521 Cup yellow cornmeal
1 Cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper
1/4 Cup sugar
4 Teaspoons baking powder
1 egg
1 1/8 cup milk or buttermilk
1 package of hotdogs
8 wooden skewers
oil for frying.

Combine cornmeal, flour, salt, pepper, sugar and baking powder.  Stir to mix.  In a separate bowl whisk milk and egg.  Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.  Heat oil.  Insert skewers into hot dogs.  Dip and roll skewered hot dogs into batter until completely covered.  Cook 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown.

Pull out the ketchup and mustard and enjoy this delicious and fun meal.  ENJOY!

Sewing Envelope Pillows

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One of my children called to ask if I could sew some pillow covers for his classroom.  The instructions for me were simple.  Six pillow covers, easy to remove for washing, plain colors, no prints and they had to fit a standard size bed pillow.

Here you can see the end results of the different colors that were used.  Cutting out took the longest time (and changing out all the bobbin thread).  I spent an enjoyable morning sewing up some easy to make pillow covers.  You can do the same.

1.  Measure you pillow and add 1 1/2 inches to your measurements for the top piece of your pillow.  For the bottom piece you will want to add 6 inches.  Example my top piece is 27 inches by 19 inches.  My bottom piece will be 33 inches by 19 inches.  This give you seam and your pillow will fit properly.

2.  Cut out your top piece 27 by 19.  Next cut out your bottom piece 33 by 19.  With your bottom piece you need to find the center and cut your material in half.  Half of 33 is 16 1/2.

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Bottom piece 33 by 19 inches.

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Cut into two pieces.

See right there in the middle where you cut your piece in half.  On the those two middle sides you will be making a 1/4 of inches seam.  Fold over 1/4 inch press with your iron making a nice flat seam.  Now fold over 1/4 inch again.  Press and pin.  Do this for both pieces.

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Sew your seam down for both pieces.  I like to sew the first seam line and then sew another seam line little bit from the first.  This makes your finished pillow look more professional.  Once you have sew both seams on your two bottom pieces you will want to put everything together.

Lay your top piece right side up on your table.  place your two cut seamed

pieces right side down, on top of your first piece.  Pin everything in place.  Time to sew everything together. After you have it pinned, you can see the envelope opening for your pillow.  Go on get to sewing.

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Clip the corners and turn right side out making sure to bring your corners all the way out.  Place your pillow inside.  CONGRATULATIONS you have just made your envelope pillow.

You can make several for different holidays or seasons without having to buy pillows everytime.  Plus just pull them off to throw in the washer.  Win, Win situation.  ENJOY!

Hash Browns Freezer Friendly

Homemade Hash Browns. Money saving, time saving delicious.
Homemade Hash Browns. Money saving, time-saving delicious.

We have learned how to can potatoes, dehydrate potatoes, make tator tots.  Today is all about the Hash Brown or Breakfast potatoes, whatever name you want to call them.

The wonderful thing about Hash Browns is, you can freeze them in batches ahead of time.  Pull them out, fry them up, in no time you have delicious, fresh side dish on your table.

First peel and boil potatoes.  I usually boil around 5 pounds at a time.  Remember you want your potatoes to be cooked but not mushy.  Next grate your potatoes. Place grated potatoes on a towel and gently pat to remove any excess water.

Grated Potatoes
Grated Potatoes

Using freezer bags or your seal a meal, place Hash Browns into bags.  Try to lay them flat so they don’t take up as much freezer space.  Remove any air from freezer bags and freeze.

When ready to use just pull out a bag.  Heat oil in your pan and fry Hash Browns until golden brown.

TIP:  Don’t forget to add seasonings.

ENJOY!

Please share what you like to add to your Hash Browns.  My favorite is onion and green pepper.

Tater Tots Homemade

Crispy, Hot Delicious Tator Tots, straight from your pantry.
Crispy, Hot Delicious Tater Tots, straight from your pantry.

This week is all about potatoes.  We have been gleaning potatoes from the field.  Taking advantage of this free food has helped fill my freezer.

Most people enjoy eating Tater Tots.  They are expensive and full of preservatives.  Why not make your own.

Simple, easy and the homemade fresh  tutor tot wins hands down against the frozen version.

Here is want you need.  2 pounds of potatoes, 1 Tablespoon flour, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic and onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon dill, 1/2 teaspoon oregano, salt and pepper to taste.  Oil for frying.

IMG_0844   Peel and boil potatoes until cooked through, but not mushy.  Cool and grate potatoes.  Lay out a towel and place grated potatoes on towel and press gently to soak up any extra water from the potatoes.

In a large bowl add grated potatoes, flour and seasonings.  (you can add different seasoning to suite your family taste).  Mix everything.  Using your hands form tater tots.  Heat oil.  Cook until golden and crispy.

Break out the ketchup and ENJOY!

TIP:  Make several batches of tater tots and freeze.  Pull them out and fry them up.  Easy Peasy!

Soft Pretzel Bites

These pretzel bites are so soft, chewy and delicious. You can't eat just one.
These pretzel bites are so soft, chewy and delicious. You can’t eat just one.

If you have never tried making pretzels in any shape before, please give this a try.  Cross my heart you can make these delicious Soft Pretzel Bites.  

1 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons yeast (one package)
1/3 cup melted butter
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 1/2 to 5 cups flour
Vegetable oil
3 Quarts boiling water
1/2 cup Baking Soda
1 egg beaten
Sea Salt

Combine, warm water, sugar, yeast and butter in bowl.  Let sit for 5 minutes.  Add salt, flour and mix well.  If your dough is to wet add more flour one tablespoon at a time.  Knead dough.  Oil your bowl, add dough, turn to coat and let rise for one hour.

Pre-Heat oven to 425 degrees.

Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil.

While your waiting for water to boil.  Divide dough into 8 balls.  Roll each ball into a long rope.  Approximately 22 inches lone.

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Dough divided and rolled into 22 inch long ropes.

Cut rope into one inch pieces.

When water starts to boil add your 1/2 cup baking soda.  It will foam up and fizz.  Don’t worry everything is fine.

Place one inch pieces into boiling water and boil for 30 seconds.  Remove bites from water and place on a greased cookie sheet.  The dough will have puffed up.  Continue cooking rest of one inch pieces.

Brush tops of dough with egg wash and sprinkle with salt.  Bake for 15 to 18 minutes. 

CHEESE SAUCE

1/2 Tablespoon butter, 1/2 Tablespoon flour, 1/2 cup milk and 8 ounces granted cheddar cheese.

Melt butter.  Add flour and stir cooking for 1 minute.  Whisk in milk and cook until thick.  Remove from heat and add grated cheddar cheese.  Stir until smooth.

Cinnamon and Sugar:  Mix your cinnamon and sugar mixture.  Brush pretzel bites with butter and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar mixture.

Please, please let me know how you like these Soft Pretzel Bites.  It has become one of our favorites.

 

 

How to Clean Vintage Fabrics

Love Vintage Hankies and Lace
Love Vintage Hankies and Lace

If you have any Vintage (not using word OLD) fabrics that might be little yellow and stained, don’t worry.  In most cases the problem can be solved.  The very first tip you need to know is don’t use your washing machine or dryer.  Vintage fabrics are just too fragile.

First try soaking your items in cool water with a mild soap.  I like to let my items soak over night.  Rinse everything three or four times in cool water.  Don’t wring out the water.  Squeeze gently and use towels to soak and pat your item dry.

Dry flat on a towel. Don’t lay them out in the sun.

If your item is still stained here are a few other ways to make them clean.  The powdered Oxi Clean dissolved in hot water and before adding your fabric add some cool water.  Swish everything around.  Let soak overnight. and repeat with gently squeezing and drying with a towel.

If your fabric is extremely stained and yellowed you can simmer the fabric in a large pot full of water for two hours.  Just prepare your water using Oxi Clean as instructed above.   Don’t boil, simmer the water.

If you are cleaning pillowcases, tablecloths and napkins go ahead and hang them outside in the sun to dry.

Now you know how to clean all those great vintage fabrics.  ENJOY!

 

Carpet and Upholstery Stain Cleaner

 

Carpet and couch looking much cleaner.
Carpet and couch looking much cleaner.

For those spots that appear on your carpet and furniture, I have a great stain remover recipe.  In my family no one ever knows how those stains appeared, it is a mystery that has not been solved in over 35 years.

Three ingredients is all you need and I am very sure everything is waiting inside your pantry cupboards.  Come along and we will clean up some mysterious stains.

Baking Soda
1 Tablespoon dish soap
1 Tablespoon white vinegar
2 cups HOT water

Sprinkle on baking soda over your stain.  Wait 10 minutes or so and vacuum up baking soda.  Mix dish soap, vinegar and water into a paste.

Using a clean rag dab the stain remover on your stain.  Keep dabbing and blotting until stain is removed.

Repeat if necessary!

TIP:  You might have the entire family watch how you clean the stain.  On the job training is always best.  ENJOY!

 

Aronia Berry Recipes

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These are the Aronia Berries I picked off of one of our bushes.

Yes they look like blueberries.  Health wise these Aronia Berries win hands down.

I explained all of that in yesterdays blog.  Check back if you missed it.

Today I wanted to share some of our favorite ways to use Aronia Berries.

Aronia Berry Smoothie:  2 Cups strawberry yogurt and 1/2 cup Aronia Berries.  Toss everything in your blender and blend until feels like satin.

Aronia Berry Fruit Smoothie:  1/2 cup orange juice, 1 cup peaches, drained, 2 bananas cut into chunks, 1/2 cup frozen Aronia Berries.  Put everything in blender.  Blend until smooth.

Aronia Berry Juice:  8 pounds Aronia Berries, Sugar.  Place berries in large pot.  Add water, don’t cover the berries.  Simmer for an hour or more until everything becomes juice.  Strain.  Server over ice cream, pancakes, waffles, french toast, cheesecake or use a glaze for port and BBQ.

Aronia Berry Syrup:  3 cups sugar, 2 cups Aronia Berry juice.  Combine and simmer, stirring frequently, 15 minutes or until thick.

Aronia Berry Bread:  2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder and baking soda, 2 Tablespoons shortening, 1 egg, 1/4 to 1/2 cup orange juice, 1 cup frozen Aronai Berries.  Grease loaf pan.  Pre heat oven 350 degrees.  Mix first 4 ingredients.  Mix in shortening, egg, enough orange juice to moisten but do not thin like a cake batter. Stir in berries.  Bake for 40 minutes.

Aronia Berry Jam:  3 1/2 cups Aronia Berry puree (use blender, 1 1/2 cups water, 2 Tablespoons lemon juice, 1 package pectin (I use Sure Jel), 4 cups sugar.
Mix 1/2 cup sugar with pectin.  Heat pureed berries, water, lemon juice and pectin.  Heat until comes to a rolling boil.  Add rest sugar.  Bring to a rolling boil again.  Boil for 2 minutes.  Put in jars.  Process in a water bath for 10 minutes.

I hope you try some or all these recipes.  Let me know what you think.  ENJOY!

Aronia Berry

 

 

 

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You see before you a Aronia Berry Bush.  Many of you may have never heard of such a bush.  In my grandfather and great grandfathers day the bush was called a Chokeberry Bush.

Over the years as land was cleared for houses and farming the Chokeberry Bush or Aronia Berry Bush disappeared.

It has taken us many years to realize what a mistake removing the Aronia Berry Bush was.

I have several recipes for Aronia Berries, first let me explain why eating these berries are so important.

Aronia Berry is the new superfood.  These berries have a high concentration of anthocyanin, which has powerful inflammatory properties, thought to slow cancer growth.    More research has shown that a regular diet that included Aronia Berries can low your risk of diabetes and heart disease.  The high antioxidant content doesn’t change whether the Aronia Berry is fresh, frozen or dried.

The Aronia Berry has a tart flavor when eaten fresh.  Many people mistake them for blueberries, because they look so much like blueberries.

Freshly picked ARONIA BERRIES (chokeberries)

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Use these berries to make Smoothies, Juice, Syrup, Bread, Jam, add them to muffins and to granola.  Coming up will be some recipes for you to try making with this new superfood.  ENJOY!

Canning Potatoes

Lovely potatoes canned and ready for when I need them.
Lovely potatoes canned and ready for when I need them.

Several fields of potatoes were planted this year around where we live.  It was very interesting to see how they harvested all those potatoes.  In the process of harvesting tons of potatoes were left on the ground.

If you know anything about me, I asked for permission to glean the fields.  Permission was granted and away we went with our buckets.  In total we canned 28 quarts of potatoes.  FREE!  Granted it was work and a big shout goes out to my dear husband.  He is a master potato peeler by the way.  There were still tons of potatoes left rotting on the ground.  We did our share.  FREE FOOD IS ALWAYS WELCOMED AROUND HERE.

Here is how you go about canning potatoes.  First you must use a pressure canner.  YOU CAN NOT USE HOT WATER BATH.

1.  Wash your potatoes.
2.  Peel your potatoes.  Cut potatoes into 1 1/2 to 2 inch pieces and place them in water with some salt sprinkled in.  This helps to keep your potatoes from turning dark in color.  We used a five gallon bucket full of water to keep our potatoes fresh.
3.  Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Place your potatoes in the boiling water for 10 minutes.
4.  Remove your potatoes from boiling water and run cold water over them.  You want to remove the starchy water and clean potatoes one more time.
5.  Your jars, lids and rings should be clean and ready to be filled.
6.  Add 1/8 teaspoon salt to bottom of jars.  Fill with potatoes.  With boiling water fill jars covering potatoes.
7.  Wipe jars clean.  Place lids and rings on jars.
8.  Process in pressurer canner.  Quart jars 40 minutes at 11 pounds of pressure.

Invite a good friend over for some help peeling potatoes.  Work is always more fun with a good friend.  ENJOY!