Thursday, December 31, 2015

It's time.... store these away for eleven months!  

Whatever you plan for New Year's Eve, have a safe one!  See you in 2016!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Christmas in the country....

Once again, we went to the country for Christmas dinner!  The Country Couple were wonderful hosts!

The Christmas tree.

Country Man baked a wonderful apple pie in an iron skillet!

Country Girl baked a delicious chocolate cheese cake!

Where was the camera when the freshly-baked bread came out of the oven?!?:-)  It was just as good!

Before Christmas.... was a busy time in the kitchen.

Chocolate Trees (Land o' Lakes recipe)
Eggnog Cookies (can't remember source)
Red Velvet Thumbprints (Betty Crocker)

Lots of cookie baking!

Some of them made it to the cookie tray!  Others on the tray, on the left - Holiday Snowballs; toward the center back - Sugar Cookies (dipped in chocolate).  On the right is a reindeer gingerbread cookie. His feet are white from landing on snow-covered roof-tops!:-)  I hope that reindeer found your roof-top, whether or not there was snow on it!

Thursday, December 24, 2015 they are!

We just recently celebrated the birthday of our adult twin daughters - on December 23, to be exact.  

Flourless Chocolate Cake, from Susan Branch's Sweets to the Sweet book, was the choice for Munchomom as she has become gluten-intolerant.  Italian Cream Cake was the choice for Country Girl.  I must say this - it was a wise decision to send the leftovers home with the girls!:-)

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

It's that time again....

....time to wish a happy birthday to Munchomom and Country Girl!  How quickly the years have flown!

Monday, December 14, 2015

One more time....

Well....for now, anyway.:-)

I know you thought I couldn't possibly have any more suggestions for using pumpkin.  Surprise!  Here is a simple one for you that is based on the popular dump cake.

- Mix up your regular pumpkin pie custard.  Pour it into a sprayed oblong dish.
- Sprinkle your choice of cake mix - white, yellow - on top.  Sprinkle some chopped nuts over this, then drizzle 1 cup melted butter evenly over the top.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes.  
- Let cool for awhile before serving.  Refrigerate leftovers.
A variation could use spice cake mix.  In that case, the usual spices that you add to that pumpkin pie recipe could be lessened to about 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.

Pumpkin custard in the baking dish.

Drizzled with melted butter.  (Probably could have used a little more.):-)

Out of the oven, ready to serve at the potluck!

Leftovers to bring home!

Merry Magical Monday wishes to you!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Be quick....

.....and catch that gingerbread man!  It looks like he's ready to make a run for it!

We will, however, be successful in our attempts to corral him.:-) He's due on the cookie tray!

This recipe was on the card to which a bear cookie cutter was attached.  It seemed to be an appropriate gift for a family member a number of years ago, so the cookies have become known as "Bear" Cookies.:-)

3 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon bakiing soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla
- Sift all dry ingredients together.  Beat butter and sugars until smooth.  Add egg, molasses, and vanilla.  Beat until well-mixed.  Add dry ingredients a little at a time until well-mixed.  Make into a ball and chill for one hour.  Roll out and cut into desired shapes.
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes until almost firm.
Of course, the number of cookies this recipe will make depends on the size of your cookie cutter.:-) This is a new size for me this year!  Now, just to add trim, and he'll be ready!

More to follow!

What do you call them?

I refer to those occasions where you may be asked to bring a dish of food to a group gathering for the enjoyment of those attending.  In our area, this is known as a "covered-dish" or a "pot-luck," but I've heard there may be other terms in other parts of the country.

At any rate, this is what I took to one such event at our church recently.

Once again, I found myself in a bit of a rush as I was preparing this, so didn't stop to take pictures of the process.

As you can see, I've had this recipe for several years.  It came from a much-loved magazine that is no longer published.:-(  This was in the December 2007 issue of Cottage Living.

I will mention that I forgot to include the flour in the cornbread recipe.:-)  As a general rule, my cornbread is made from plain cornmeal rather than self-rising, and it also doesn't include flour.  

The Husband was glad there were leftovers to bring home!:-)

Monday, December 7, 2015


The winner of this - Karen!  Congratulations!  I will have this in the mail to you this week!

Thank you to everyone who entered.  I will have other giveaways during the coming year, so follow along, and you may win the next one!


This is a reminder about the giveaway mentioned last Wednesday.  If you want to be entered, remember to leave a comment on the blog for December 2, 2015!  This will belong to one of you!

Winner will be announced in the next post - Tuesday, December 8!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Caught reading....

....a seasonal book - one or more - for some inspiration!

Actually, we think gingerbread and gingerbread cookies are good at any time of the year, though they seem to be more prevalent during this season.  These books have served to remind me that I need to get busy on those gingerbread cookies!  Some week-end baking may be coming!

Remember - check with the blog from Wednesday, December 2 for giveaway information, and leave a comment if you want to be entered in the drawing!

Enjoy your week-end!

Thursday, December 3, 2015


Perhaps you have some leftovers from Thanksgiving.... this sliced ham, with an empty spot needing to be filled.

Yes!  Biscuits for that ham!  Nothing better!

Just out of the oven!

This is a recipe I have had for many years, and I have baked these many times.  

I altered this recipe just a bit by using three cups of white all-purpose flour and two cups of whole wheat flour.  We like that change!

Also, if you don't wish to bake all the dough at once, it can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days.  I have stored some of the baked biscuits in the freezer until they reappear when we have more people in the house.

Remember - go to the blog for Wednesday and leave your comment if you want to be included in the giveaway.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


....four years as a blogger!  That's right!  This blog is four years old!

So, to help celebrate, it is time for a giveaway!

This Susan Branch calendar will be given to the person whose name is drawn from those who enter.  The calendar measures seven inches square, so it isn't as large as the normal wall calendar.

To enter, simply leave a comment at the bottom of this post.  There are some of you who follow the blog who do not comment, but you know how to reach me by email.  Just let me know if you want to be entered for this giveaway.

Good luck to each of you!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Let them eat cake....

....especially when it features cranberries!

Ready for the oven....

....and out to cool!

Once again, I don't remember the source for this recipe.  I am always clipping recipes that sound interesting to me from newspapers or magazines.  In an "organizational moment," I will copy them over into something that is friendly to organizing.:-)

This was the first time baking this cake, and I chose the 10-inch pan.  The next time, I would choose a 9-inch.  The butter, brown sugar, and orange juice that were mixed together didn't spread all over the bottom of the pan.  In fact, I think I will experiment a bit with this the next time I bake the cake.  It didn't bake in a syrup consistency that might run over the cake when turned upside-down.  However, the glaze is a nice addition.


Happy baking!

For the cookie plate....

....and choosing a favorite seasonal ingredient - cranberries!

Into the oven....

....and out to cool!

Waiting for a cup of hot tea or coffee.  Care to join me?

I don't remember where I found this recipe, probably in the newspaper or an advertising insert.

Cookie plate - designed by Susan Branch
Recipe page - also a Susan Branch design

Saturday, November 28, 2015

A treat for all seasons....

Yes, Santa has made his appearance here.  Looks like he has brought along some tasty goodies!

I clipped this recipe from the local newspaper several years ago.  As you read it closely, you will be able to see that it appeared in the fall, rather near Halloween!  It can easily be adapted for other seasons.  In the spring, Annie's Bunnies would be good to add, and pastel-colored M & Ms would work nicely.  I leave out the chocolate Teddy Grahams at that time, as I do at Christmas.  I have also found that it works best to omit the raisins and miniature marshmallows.  

After our guests left, Santa's goody jar was once again empty.:-(  Probably for the best.:-)

Slightly fewer than four more weeks!  That is, if you're counting!:-)

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Clear skies....

For once, we finally had clear skies here for the Frost Moon!

This is as the moon began to rise behind the trees in the back of our property.

Then, there it was - beautiful and full!

Were you able to see this moon where you are?

Still baking....

....and using one of the season's favorite ingredients here!

Into the oven....

....and out!  Just like that!  In the freezer, and ready for gift-giving!

It is easy to see that I have three loaves.:-)  I used smaller loaf pans for baking, and it turned out very well.

I am not sure about the source of this recipe, or I would happily give credit!  The bread is delicious!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015....

For the bread basket....

Continuing on with the many ways cranberries can be featured is this muffin recipe.

I am not sure about the source for this one, but it is a winner in my book!

Ready for the oven!

Here they are, ready to serve!  They are a great addition to that Thanksgiving bread basket.

Incidentally, tonight is the night for the Frost Moon!  Several nights ago, I was able to take this picture.

The sky was remarkably clear, and there were many twinkling stars around!  I'm hoping for clear skies tonight!

Another version....

From the first Thanksgiving dinner I prepared in 1963 in my first apartment, cranberries have had a place on the table.  This version is one that has been prepared many times through the years.  It comes from a Betty Crocker cookbook from 1969.


For my latest effort, I only had the small size raspberry gelatin, so I added a small size strawberry gelatin to the mix.  Also, jellied cranberry sauce was all that was in the pantry.  I also chose to use a regular serving bowl rather than a mold.  

It will be pretty on the table regardless!

Monday, November 23, 2015


....with the cranberry theme, I want to share with you Susan Branch's method for making homemade cranberry sauce!  She has another version in her cookbook, though this one was on her calendar for November 2014.

3 cups raw cranberries
1 cup sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Combine cranberries and sugar. 
- Place in casserole dish (ungreased!)
- Bake for 35 minutes, stirring every ten minutes.

Ready for the oven.

All finished baking!

Transferred to serving dish to cover and refrigerate until the Big Day!

The serving dish is handed down from my maternal grandmother, who was born in 1888.