Friday, December 29, 2006

Yum Yum!!

For Thanksgiving, I made a pumpkin cheesecake. It turned out picture perfect, so I had to post a pic online.
My sister, Treva, is the pie maker in our family, and she makes some delicious pies. I think this past Thanksgiving she brought 6 or 8 pies to Thanksgiving dinner. Unfortunately, I was in MN and was unable to partake. I probably should have tried my hand at making a pie in her honor, but I chose to make a pumpkin cheesecake instead. It certainly was delicious. Maybe next year, I'll make a pie, too. :-)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

early Thanksgiving 2006

We celebrated Thanksgiving a little early this year (the Saturday before), because Nathan came for a visit. I made the whole spread--9 lb turkey, stuffing, potatoes, gravy, green beans, cranberry sauce and applesauce and pumpkin cake for dessert.

It was fun to do, but I was a little pressed for time. Dinner was supposed to start at 5 p.m. (We'd invited the Elders over as well, and they had a baptism at 7 p.m., so timing was essential), but the turkey didn't cook quite as quickly as I'd calculated. We ended up eating around 5:45. :-( Everything tasted good, so I think I'd do it again--without any morning plans. (I'd spent the morning at a PartyLite regional meeting, and hadn't gotten home until 1:45 p.m.)

Here is a pic of our Thanksgiving dinner table. We even used the good dishes.
I would have liked to have gotten a few more pictures from the evening--with the missionaries, Nathan, Jeff and I, but we were too short on time, and I wanted the Elders to be able to eat.
I saved the turkey carcass after dinner to try my hand at making some homemade turkey soup. Here's a pic:
The soup turned out pretty good, but it could have definitely used more salt and more substance. I put in celery, carrots, turkey (of course), potatoes and orzo pasta. Next time, I'll definitely add more of everything and no orzo pasta. I thought that would be good, but it got too mushy and was a weird slimy texture. Next time, I'll think I'll use spirals. With only 3 of us at home, we'll be eating soup for quite awhile! :-)
I also made some baking soda biscuits--from scratch--to accompany the soup. I'd never made them before. They tasted pretty yummy, but they didn't rise all that much. Maybe that's the way they're supposed to be...

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Canning Applesauce

The Apples, Apples, and More Apples post didn't give me enough apples to satisfy my apple curiosity.
(I made apple cobbler, German apple pancakes, sliced 3 quarts to freeze, and made one batch (1 qt) of applesauce to freeze.)

So I went and picked up another bagful of apples.

I made an apple crisp.

Today I made and canned 6 pints of applesauce! (I decided to can instead of freeze because our freezer is full!!) It was my first time canning since helping my mom when I was a little girl. I was going to can yesterday, but I didn't have any canning tongs. And it's out of season at Wal-mart for canning supplies.

I called a sister in my ward to see if I could borrow hers. She gave me her canning pot, too. I was very grateful for her helpful advice and for letting me borrow her supplies. Unfortunately, I did not use her pot. It was too big for our stove (in my opinion), and it was too intimidating for me. Everything I'd read said the bottles needed to be submerged with 1 inch of water covering the jars. I didn't see how it was possible to do that with the pot she gave me, so I just used my own deep pot.

I did lots of research on the Internet about canning before starting this venture (that's how I knew about the 1 inch of water cover). I kept looking for advice on how to can without a canning pot (with rack for the jars). I'd read that the jars should not touch the bottom of the pot, so I searched and searched for a way to get around this without purchasing a specific tool. Finally I found something that would help me! They said to put a towel in the bottom of the pot in prevent the jars from touching the bottom and breaking (from the heat?). So...this is what I did today. I also only did two pint jars at a time. It took me 2 1/2 hours to complete the process.

I still have quite a few apples remaining, so I may make more applesauce on Friday. We'll see...

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Egg-less pancakes...Oops!

Yesterday morning, I thought it would be nice to make some pancakes for breakfast for our little visitor. Nathan was visiting us for the weekend. Nathan is my stepson; he is 7 years old.

Unfortunately, I kept getting distracted by him and by Jeff that I accidentally forgot to crack those eggs into the batter before having Nathan mix it all together. When I was putting them on the griddle, the batter seemed a little thick. I just added some water to help the consistency.

I didn't really think too much about it until an hour or two later. I don't know why I was thinking about the pancakes again, but I just couldn't visualize cracking the eggs. That's when it occurred to me that I had forgotten them. Oops!!

Turns out...maybe the pancakes didn't really NEED the eggs! They tasted just normal to me. In fact...they were delicious.

Still, next time I'll try to remember to add 'em.

Sunday, October 1, 2006

Apples, Apples, and More Apples!!

A sister in my ward had a lot of extra apples, so I thought, "Why not? Free apples are tastier than those from the store."

I'll probably freeze most of them to use for pies and baking during the winter.

Of course, I've been using some right away!

Last night I made a delicious Apple Cobbler.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Homemade Cream Filled Individual Sponge Cakes

Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Homemade Cream Filled Individual Sponge CakesWe had a ward dessert social tonight. It was potluck, so I found this recipe for homemade Twinkies (R). I changed the recipe to make them more like homemade Suzy Q's (R). I was surprised to find only one remaining when the clean-up began!

I was so excited to try out this recipe. Just ask Jeff. He said I was giddy like a school girl! I have to admit I was pretty silly. I thought the procedure of making these would be challenging, but it was surprisingly easy.

Below is the recipe...

Homemade Cream Filled Individual Sponge Cakes
Submitted by: TNthree Rated: 4 out of 5 by 9 members
Prep Time: 45 Minutes Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 1 Hour 15 Minutes Yields: 24 servings
"Yellow cake bars are frosted with a shortening and evaporated milk filling in this homage to the famous snack cakes."

  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package
  • yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 (5 ounce) can evaporated
  • milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1. Bake cake according to package directions in a 9x13 inch pan. Cool and cut into bars. Cut each bar in half lengthwise to make two layers.
2. In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat in shortening, a little at a time, until fluffy. Gradually beat in sugar. Combine evaporated milk and vanilla and beat into filling, scraping the bowl, until fluffy.
3. Sandwich the bars with the fluffy filling.

Printed from 9/10/2006

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Banana Oatmeal CookiesI had some bananas in our freezer that I needed to use before our move. Individual snacks move much more quickly in our home, so I found this recipe for banana oatmeal cookies. These turned out wonderfully; although, I did need to decrease the cooking time to around 9-10 min. If you have overripe bananas, this is an excellent recipe!

Banana Oatmeal Cookies III

Submitted by: JoAnn Bork Rated: 4 out of 5 by 12 members
Prep Time: 15 Minutes Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Ready In: 45 Minutes Yields: 36 servings

"These are delicious moist cookies which freeze very well and a great way to use those overripe bananas."

Banana Oatmeal CookiesINGREDIENTS:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup shortening
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • 1 3/4 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Cut in shortening until almost no lumps remain. Stir in the egg and bananas; mix well. Finally, stir in the oats and walnuts. Drop by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are browned. Remove from pans immediately to cool on wire racks.

Printed from 7/23/2006

Monday, July 10, 2006

Chocolate cake...Yummy!!

Tale of Two Sisters and Their Kitchens | Chocolate Cake

If you know me, you know I love to cook/bake for gatherings. Jeff and I had dinner with some friends the other night, and I offered to make dessert.
I wanted something cool and summery and found this recipe on All Recipes. It turned out delicious.
The recipe is below. It yields a 9x13 cake, but I didn't need one that large. I divided the cake batter into a round cake, and 12 cupcakes. Also, I used strawberry gelatin. I needed to modify the frosting a bit because my grocery store didn't have the whipped topping mix. Instead, I used frozen whipped topping i.e. Cool Whip (R). I mixed it with the chocolate pudding and added some milk to help with the consistency.

Chocolate Cake IV
Submitted by: REB Rated: 4 out of 5 by 2 members
Prep Time: 20 Minutes Cook Time: 35 Minutes
Ready In: 55 Minutes Yields: 12 servings
"Use any flavor of gelatin to compliment this refreshing chocolate version of the poke cake. Serve it straight from the freezer."

  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package
  • chocolate cake mix
  • 1 (3 ounce) package fruit
  • flavored gelatin mix
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 2 (3.9 ounce) packages instant
  • chocolate pudding mix
  • 2 (1.3 ounce) envelopes
  • whipped topping mix
  • 3 cups cold milk

1. Prepare and bake cake mix according to package directions for a 9x13 inch pan. Poke holes in cake while still hot with a fork. Make gelatin with 1 cup of boiling water, then stir in cold water. Slowly pour liquid gelatin over hot cake. Cool cake completely in the freezer before frosting.
2. To make the frosting: Using an electric mixer, beat together the instant pudding, whipped topping and milk until thickened. Pour over completely cooled cake. Keep cake in freezer until ready to serve.

Printed from 7/10/2006


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