wishing everyone an almond JOYOUS cheesecake HOLIDAY
Almond Joy Cheesecake recipe link
Without a doubt my favorite kitchen item is my antique waffle iron.
A well seasoned cast iron is a thing of beauty and the cute chicken on the lid doesn't hurt either.
I use my waffle iron so much it sits permanetly on my stove.
Dinner tonight is a Dill Halvarti, pickled jalapeno on white bread.
Waffle is a verb in my house.
I am declaring the coming new year the Year of The Waffle, expect to see more wafflizing as I waffle my way through 2014.
up early this morning and started canning
Do Chua - Pickled Vietnamese Vegetables
I used this recipe. It's quite simple and makes a lot.
In addition to using in traditional vietnamese dishes, I like it on BBQ pulled pork sandwiches.
Jalapeno Pepper Jelly
recipe here - I didn't use mint for this batch of jelly and used cranberries in place of the mint. Both versions are wonderful but my mint has not fully grown back after I cut it to make plain mint jelly.
This is my favorite jelly and I typically can about 45 jars of it every year.
My list of ways that I love jalapeno jelly
Watermelon Rind Pickles
I used this recipe
sweet, crunchy, cinnamon and spicey - I haven't made these in years.
You may find me late tonight, huddled over a jar of these with a fork in my hand eating right out of the jar. You just might.
Tomato Basil Jam
4 pounds tomatoes
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 cups sugar
1/4 cup snipped fresh basil
3 Tablespoons powdered fruit pectin for low sugar
Remove skins from tomatoes, core and finely chop. Place in large pan and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, covered.
Stir in lemon juice and basil, bring to boil. Add supar and pectin, bring to a full rolling boil and boil hard for 2 mintues.
Spoon into hot sterlized jars and process in hot bath for 10 minutes.
Makes approx. 6 half pints.
I love tomato basil jamon grilled havarti cheese sandwiches. It is also great with
grilled chicken breasts
nice topping for crostini
top on brie for a with crostini or crackers
on fresh bread
and also right out of the jar on a spoon
***a big thanks to all the nice emails of concern and well wishes about the dog bite incident
who would have thought that two peach trees could produce so many peaches
I have been canning and freezing but the tree is making more fruit that I can keep up with
the neighbors are sick of peaches
so far, I have:
peaches on the grill
a freezer full of peaches and
the trees are still loaded
today, I have been making peach liqueur
I don't have a specific recipe when I make fruit liqueurs
I keep it simple
You can make a simple syrup but I just put the sugar in the jar on top of the fruit. Let set a couple of days in the refrig and then add the vodka. It takes a few months to brew,I shake the jar once a week and then strain and filter into clean jars.
It's that easy.
It's also that good.
new (old) patterns
Last week, I found a box of uncut patterns at the thrift store and a few found on etsy.
When it comes to vintage patterns, I don't consider the size of the pattern.
I mostly look for interesting style, uncut and in good condition.
there is a ton of information online about resizing vintage patterns
If I have a choice, I like to stay around a size 14 to size 16 and it's easier to take it up or down in size.
here is one that I like but there are many others
this one is good also
Right now, I am interested in vests.
Max the cat photobombing.
A blouse I made this past winter from fabric that I repurposed from a thrift store skirt.
Picture from December, before I lost a lot of weight.
I was happy yesterday to cut all the padding off my dress form.
Several layers had to be added as I gained weight over the winter.
After having my thryoid removed last year, I had gained about 30 pounds.
Once I found a doctor who was able to figure out my thryoid replacement medication, the weight came off in a few weeks time.
Best of all, I can swim again.
I will be eating this salad a lot this year, it is so good.
The Good Salad
1 1/4 cup Israeli Couscous
2 oranges, peeled and segments chopped
1 avocado chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1 cup pomegranate arils
1 cup black beans
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1/2 bottle Kraft Greek Vinaigrette
Cook the Israeli couscous according to package directions, drain well.
I use my own precooked black beans in this salad, the kind that come in the dry form. I soak the beans overnight and cook them in the crock pot. I then freeze the beans in one cup amounts. They freeze well and have less sodium than canned black beans. If you use canned beans, drain the beans well.
I used blood oranges because that is what is currently in season in my garden but any type of orange would work well. My blood oranges are small, so if you use a navel type orange, I would probably only use one. Next time, I might try a Satsuma tangerine in place of the orange.
You could use regular couscous but I prefer the Israeli couscous as it gives more substance to the salad.
Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate a couple of hours before
I love the Kraft brand of Greek Vinaigrette. The flavor is better balanced than the other brands. I think I used about half the bottle on this salad but adjust to your own taste.
The pomegranate was so good in this salad that I am currently researching to see if I can add a pomegranate tree to my garden. The summer may be too tropical but I think I am going to give it a try.
Has anyone tried growing a pomegranate with high humidity summers?
The desert that was made for the New Year but didn't make it into 2013
every crumb was devoured before the sun set on this day
so I will have to make more
if you are bored, Google the history behind this desert that is named after the ballerina Anna Pavlova
I love deserts with a interesting history
Pavlova is so very tasty and easy to make, especially with a stand mixer and perfect if you find yourself with a few egg whites
4 large egg whites
1 cup super fine sugar (I process regular sugar in a food processor)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
Preheat over to 250. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
In a mixer bowl, whisk the egg whites on medium until they hold a soft peak. Gradually add the sugar, spoonfuls at a time, while beating on high spead. Continue beating until the meringue holds a stiff peak and is glossy. Make sure the sugar is dissolved. To check, feel the meringue between your finger and it should feel silky smooth with no sugar grit.
Beat in the vanilla. Sprinkle the vinegar and cornstarch over the top of the meringue and gently fold in by hand with a spatula.
Spread the meringue on the parchment paper making a 7 inch circle, smooth out the edges.
Bake 60 minutes until the outside is dry and a pale cream color. Turn the oven off and cool completly in the oven. The Pavlova will crack as it cools.
Serve with lemon curd, berrries, and whipped topping. The lemon curd is optional as the Pavlova is good served with frest fruit of choice.
That is what I am - a fool for lemons
Fortunate for me, I had a large harvest of lemons.
Determined not to waste a single lemon, I have been busy canning and preserving lemons for the last couple of days.
Both savory and sweet, I love it all.
It used to be that I preferred sweet lemons with walnuts for my tea but it seems now that I can't get enough of the savory lemon with it's salty goodness. (Not in tea thought, I use the savory in cooking.)
I use the salty lemon in tagines, moroccan recipes, and on roast chicken. It's also perfect in a dressing and in a marinade.
Click here for a savory preserved lemon recipe, the only thing I do different is I add thyme to mine and I add quite a bit more cardomen as I love cardomen.
The savory lemon is good in lemon pasta.
The sweet preserved lemon, is not only good in tea but soothing for a sore throat.
It is so good, I have been know to sneak into the kitchen at night and secretly enjoy it right out of the jar.
Here is a recipe for a basic Lemon Suck recipe because I am too lazy to type one out and I have lemon curd cooking nearly ready to can.
I add cardomen to the sweet preserved lemon because not only am I a fool for lemon but an even bigger fool for cardomen.