MAY YOU ENJOY AND APPRECIATE THE JOYS OF BEING SURROUNDED BY FAMILY AND FRIENDS. ENJOY ALL THE WONDERFUL FOOD AND TREATS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE. KISS THE COOK AND MAKE SURE SHE KNOWS HOW MUCH YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR ALL THE HARD WORK.
ENJOY THOSE CHRISTMAS COOKIES AND PIES. UNWRAP YOUR GIFTS AND APPRECIATE AND THINK ABOUT ALL YOU HAVE AND ENJOY.
DON’T FORGET TO PUT OUT THE COOKIES AND MILK FOR SANTA. KIDS GO TO BE EARLY!
Cooler weather brings out our hunger for hot and hearty foods. Fresh homemade Vegetable, Bean and Ham Soup will satisfy your entire family. This is not your ordinary ham and bean soup. Adding vegetables make a great ham and bean soup into an extraordinary Vegetable, Bean and Ham Soup.
There are no fancy ingredients. Just plain wholesome good food.
1 cup dried navy beans. Sort and rinse.
1 cup dices cooked ham
1 cup sliced celery
1 cup sliced carrots
2- 14 1/2 ounces of chicken broth (I use my homemade chicken broth)
3/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 bay leaves
Soak bean overnight. Drain. In a 4 quart crockpot, combine beans and rest of the ingredients. Stir to mix.
Time to update your toffee reprature. By chance I have just what your taste buds are seeking, Saltine Toffee.
Throw open your pantry doors, everything you need is waiting to be made into this delicious treat. Need something in a rush, here is your solution. Make this in ten minutes, let it harden, break into pieces, package and your out the door. What are you waiting for?
Large baking sheet with sides, line with parchment.
40 saltine crackers which is one pack and maybe 5 more, 1 cup butter, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 cups chocolate chips, 1 cup chopped pecans.
Line your baking sheet with crackers. Melt butter and brown sugar. Bring to a roiling boil for 3 minutes. Don’t stir while boiling. Immediately pour over crackers and spread out.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over hot mixture. With off set knife spread melted chips across top of butter and crackers. Sprinkle with pecans, gently press into chocolate.
Bake in oven at 375 for 6 minutes.
Remove and let cool and harden or set up.
Break into pieces and watch them disappear. ENJOY!
Store in airtight container for 2 weeks or freeze for 2 months.
German Sausage and Cabbage Soup is comfort food to the max. If you are trying to save money by using less meat this the perfect recipe. This simple old recipe is hearty, satisfying, yet good for you with all that fresh cabbage thrown in.
3 cups chopped cabbage
1 medium onion
1 stalk celery
1 tablespoon butter
precooked kielbasa cut into 1/2 inch slices
3 cups red potatoes
3 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon pepper
In a large dutch oven melt butter. Add cabbage, onion and celery. Cook for 4 minutes stirring vegetables until tender.
Add rest of the ingredients. Mix well. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender and soup is completely heated.
Tip: Break out your crock pot. Throw everything in. Stir to combine. Cook on low to medium for 5 hours. ENJOY!
Eggnog seems to be another one of those traditions we only make around Christmas time. Really not certain why and I may have to change that for the up coming year.
Many of you know I try to make as many things from scratch. You know, not going to the grocery store and purchasing things ready-made to eat. First, I am a cheap skate and two I figure I can make it better, healthier and tastier from my kitchen.
Eggnog is not difficult or complicated to make. Start a new tradition and make some homemade eggnog to serve your family, friends and guests.
Ingredients for Eggnog:
2 cups whole milk (I use raw cows milk)
2 cups cream ( I use raw cream)
6 egg yolks (thanks goes out to the girls)
1/2 cup real maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
pinch sea salt
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and mix until combines. Chill. For those of you who want a more adult eggnog, add some bourbon.
Tip: Now I like my eggnog somewhat creamier, so here is what I do.
Save 1/2 cup of the cream and 2 Tablespoons of the egg whites. Beat until stiff. Fold into eggnog for a creamier version.
See how simple and easy that was. Stop buying eggnog and make it yourself. ENJOY!
Fudge making is a Christmas tradition. Personally I think we should make fudge more often. Once a year just isn’t enough. New tradition, fudge making must happen at least twice a year.
I will share my favorite old fashion chocolate fudge and peanut butter fudge.
Old Fashion Chocolate Fudge
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1 cup milk
4 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
Grease or line with wax paper a 8×8 baking dish. Combine sugar, cocoa and milk. Bring to a boil. Be sure to stir constantly. Reduce heat and place a candy thermometer in pan. Cook until thermometer reaches 238 degrees.
Remove from heat and add butter and vanilla. Stir fudge until it looses its shine. I like to use a wooden spoon.
Pour into your pan and let cool. Cut into size pieces you desire.
Peanut Butter Fudge
1/2 cup butter
2 1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Melt butter. Stir in brown sugar and milk. Bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Be sure to stir constantly. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla.
Add powdered sugar and start mixing. Mixture should be smooth. Pour into a 8×8 waxed paper line baking dish. Let firm up and cut into pieces.
Remember, this year we are making fudge twice. ENJOY!
Is it better to freeze a loaf of bread sliced or whole? Does sliced bread translate to more freezer damage? Here is your answer.
Having the attractive option of defrosting a couple slices of bread versus a whole loaf of bread is very appealing.
To find out if slicing before freezing would have any detrimental effects on bread, I baked and cooled two loaves of bread. I sliced one and then put both in zip lock freezer bags and froze them for a week.
After thawing them at room temperature for several hours, we tasted the loaves side by side, as is and toasted. I found them equally acceptable. I achieved the same results with store-bought bread and crusty breads..
The bottom line is: Sliced loaves of bread before freezing them in a heavy duty zip lock bag works just as well as freezing the whole loaf.
If you don’t plan on using the whole loaf at once. Go ahead and slice the loaf and freeze. Remove as many slices as you need. ENJOY!