My "back porch" is my kitchen, my favorite room in the house. Come on in, the coffee is fresh, and I just made a pitcher of sweet tea. The cookies will be out in a minute. I have over 40 years of recipes to share with you, along with my opinion on everything. Oh my, you are right, it is cocktail time. What can I get you? Of course I can make you a Mint Julep! Stop by anytime, something is always cooking, and the back door is never locked.

Bon Appetit, Y'all

Friday, August 31, 2012

Tomato Curry Soup

I know I should be posting Labor Day recipes, but we have the same thing on Labor Day that we have on Memorial Day, and the Fourth of July. We need to be using our tomatoes before they are gone. I wish. I haven't made this soup in forever. I forget about all this good stuff because I'm busy making something else new.

This is great because you make it the day before serving.

Serves 4-6
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6 large ripe tomatoes, peeled
1 medium onion
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (I like the thick)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons mayonnaise
About 1 tablespoon curry powder
3 tablespoons chopped parsley

The day before, put the tomatoes and the onion through a food mill, using the coarse blade. (Do not use a blender; the mixture will be too thin.)

In a bowl, blend the tomato-onion mixture with the Worcestershire, sugar, and salt. Cover and chill overnight.

Combine the mayonnaise and the curry powder to taste. Add the parsley. Fill a soup cup with the tomato mixture, and top with 1 tablespoon of the curry mayonnaise.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Baked Eggs with Garden Vegetable Hash

I can't believe I found this recipe in Back to the Table: Art Smith. This is so much like a dish that an old boyfriend use to make all the time. Not just for breakfast or brunch. His favorite time was for supper. We called it Art's Baked Eggs. Yep! His name was Art Smith. This is the perfect time to make it while you still have vegetables in the garden. He would make the egg dish, I would make the sausage gravy and Pillsbury made the biscuits. What a team!

Makes 6 servings
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1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes (about 4 medium), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 small red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 medium zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch thick half moons
1 medium yellow onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound Roma or plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
6 large eggs
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F. Lightly oil a large baking sheet or roasting pan.

Toss the potatoes, bell pepper, zucchini, onion, and olive oil on the baking sheet and season to taste with salt and pepper. Bake, occasionally turning the vegetables with a spatula, until the potatoes are almost tender, about 40 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic, and thyme. Bake until the vegetable are browned, about 20 minutes more. Transfer the vegetables to a 2-quart ovenproof serving dish.

Spacing them evenly apart, break the eggs over the vegetables. Bake until eggs are set, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and serve immediately.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Pear Chutney

I love a good homemade chutney. You can use this same recipe for peach chutney. Now that I've finished, I hope, with the basic canning and freezing I have time for the fun stuff. It's wonderful to have these on hand for the perfect hostess gift, or to add a little class to your Sunday dinner.

Yield: about 7 pints
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4 quarts finely chopped peeled, pitted peaches or pears (about 20 medium)
2 to 3 cups brown sugar
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped onion (about 1 medium)
1/4 cup mustard seed
2 tablespoons ginger
2 teaspoons salt
1 clove garlic, minced
1 hot red pepper, finely chopped (Remove seeds for a milder version.)
5 cups vinegar

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Simmer until thick. Stir frequently to prevent sticking. Ladle hot chutney into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Adjust 2-piece caps. Process 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Pears With Dark Chocolate

It seemed our summer pears were late this year. Or maybe I'm late getting to them. I should have pick pears yesterday but I'm taking a canning rest. I'll go today. I think all my neighbors have pear trees.

This dessert is so quick and easy you can have it any night of the week. It is also delicious served over vanilla frozen yogurt.

Serves 4
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4 ripe summer pears
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon sea salt

Slice pears onto four plate, removing the centers and stems. Arrange slices in a fan pattern. Carefully melt the chocolate with the vegetable oil over very low heat in a saucepan or in the microwave. Spoon the warm chocolate over the pears. Sprinkle sea salt over the chocolate.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Blackberry Tart

How did it get to be the last week in August! Summer is almost over. Of course with the temperatures still in the high 80's and 90's you would not know it. The nights are really cool for sleeping with the windows open. Instead of picking quarts of blackberries, I'm now lucky to get a pint. But a pint is all you need for this cool and refreshing late summer dessert.

Yield: 8 servings
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2 cups crushed ginger snaps
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
8 ounces cream cheese, softened (You can use non-fat if you like)
Zest of 1 lemon
1 pint fresh blackberries, rinsed and patted dry with paper towels
1/2 cup of local honey

Combine cookie crumbs, butter, and sugar. Press into 8-inch tart pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. Stir yogurt, cream cheese, and zest together until smooth. Spoon yogurt mixture over the cooled crust. Place berries in an even layer over the yogurt mixture. Chill until ready to serve. Drizzle honey over all just before serving.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Saint and Scripture Sunday

The decision to use this mediation today is based on the fact that for the past month I've intended to write about "Recharging Spiritual Batteries". With any luck I will have that ready for you next week.

Faith is like the air in a balloon. If you've got it you're filled. If you don't you're empty. - Peggy Cahn

Being faith-filled takes effort, not unlike becoming a good writer, tennis player, or pianist. Faith rows with our hearts, but we must devote time to foster this growth. Daily discussions with God are required, frequent quiet times to hear God's messages to us - just as practice on the court, hitting balls or sitting for extended periods at the computer or a piano are necessary to attainment of these goals.

Life's difficulties are eased when we have faith. The most frightening situation, a job interview, an evaluation with our boss, a showdown with a friend, can be handled confidently when we let our faith work for us. But, we must first work for it, work to attain it and work to keep it. Like any skill, it gets rusty with lack of use.

I will make sure to add to my reserves today. We never know when we may need to let our faith direct our every action. I will make a friend of God, and that partnership will carry me over any troubled time.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Farewell to Kary ,Plus Dried Tomatoes Preserved in Oil

I know that is a strange title, but I selected a recipe that I thought Kary would love. There is a memorial service at her home today for family and true friends. I hope SL gets the message. Let's lift our wine glass, light a candle, and say a prayer for our dear friend. Kary you may be gone, but never forgotten. We send our love and support to John, Teddy and the kitties.

This ones for you sweet girl!

Dried Tomatoes Preserved in Oil
Yield about 3/4 cup
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2 pounds beefsteak or plum tomatoes
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon dried basil or mint
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 sprig rosemary
1-2 dried chiles (optional)
1-2 garlic cloves, cut into slivers (optional)
Olive oil to cover

Halve the tomatoes and arrange, cut side up, on a wire rack placed over a foil-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with the salt, sugar, and dried basil or mint and then finely drizzle the extra-virgin olive oil over the top.

Place the sheet in an oven set to the lowest possible temperature and leave the door slightly ajar to allow the moisture to escape. Bake for 8-12 hours, or until the tomatoes are dry but still pliable. I dry mine in the dehydrator.

Pack the dried tomatoes into a sterilized jar along with the rosemary, dried chilies, and garlic, if using.

Pour olive oil into the jar, making sure the tomatoes are completely covered. Poke the contents of the jar with a wooden skewer to be sure there are no air pockets, then seal. The tomatoes will be ready to eat in 1-2 days, but improve with age. Shelf life - 2 years, refrigerated.

Use to flavor salads, pasta sauce, stews, and breads

Friday, August 24, 2012

Roasted Tomato Sauce

I used to make my tomato sauce like everyone else, simmering fresh tomatoes in a big pot until I discovered not just one but two fabulous new sauce recipes. This is quick and easy with that intense tomato flavor. The other one from Joyce's blog is slow cooked for hours in your slow cooker. It has the taste of fresh from the garden tomatoes. On Friday I made a batch of each, plus my dehydrator was full of tomatoes. Talk about tomato overload!

Makes 3 cups
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5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 pounds Roma or plum tomatoes, cut lengthwise in halves
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F. Generously brush a large baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.

Season the cut sides of the tomatoes with salt and pepper. Place, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Brush the skins with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Bake until the tomato skins are lightly browned and the tomatoes are tender, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely. Pull the skins off the tomatoes and discard.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the garlic, and red pepper in a small skillet over medium heat until browned, about 2 minutes. Puree the tomatoes and garlic oil in a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Stir in the basil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve hot. (The sauce can be prepared up to 3 days ahead cooled, covered and refrigerated, or frozen for up to 2 months.)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

My Birthday!

How in the world did this happen! Today is my birthday and I didn't even think about it until last night. That's a really good sign of old age. It's hard to think about canning and freezing and your birthday. Especially at my age.

Growing up I always wanted the same meal for my birthday, Chicken and Dumplings, brown beans, sliced tomatoes, cottage cheese, homemade rolls and banana pudding Not grocery store cottage cheese, the kind my grandmother made. I can taste it now.

It's funny how our taste change as we get older, not that I don't still love Chicken and Dumpling. Now I would lean more to fresh veggies and homemade bread. Let's keep the banana pudding.

On Monday of this week I went to visit a dear friend that lives down the road. Louise had her 93rd birthday last week. She told me at church on Sunday she was cutting back on her canning this year and would love for me to have some of her canning jars. I was thrilled. When I went in she had two pressure cookers on the stove full of green beans. This would make 38 jars. I didn't have to say a word, she said, "I'm cutting back not stopping." Most of the food she cans goes to the food bank and for church functions and her children. She just doesn't have the time anymore. On Wednesday each week she visits the nursing home where her sister is and "talks with all the old people". Yes, she still drives.

I should live so long to be as wonderful as Louise.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Scalloped Potatoes with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

This is what's for Bible study this week. These scalloped potatoes are made with broth, not milk, and get a huge flavor boost from the sun-dried tomato presto. They are fabulous with roast chicken, which someone else is bringing.

Makes 8 servings
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Adapted from Art Smith's Back to the Table: The Reunion of Food and Family

3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes (I used larger red-skinned from the garden.)
1 cup Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto (recipe posted yesterday)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 cup chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium, heated to boiling
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil an 11 1/2 by 8-inch (2 quart) baking dish. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat.

Peel the potatoes and cut into 1/8-inch-thick rounds (a mandoline or food processor does the quickest work). Add to the boiling water and cook until barely tender, about 8 minutes. Drain and toss with the pesto to coat evenly. Season with salt and pepper.

Layer half of the potatoes in the dish, sprinkle with one third of the cheese, and sprinkle with basil. Continue until you have 3 layers, finishing with cheese. Pour in the hot broth. Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake until the cheese is bubbling and starting to brown, about 15 minutes. Serve hot, sprinkled with parsley.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto

Were you wondering what I was going to do with all the tomatoes I dehydrated? I thought maybe I had overdone it a bit until I discovered this pesto recipe in Art Smith's Back to the Table Cook Book that Joyce sent. This stuff is flat wonderful.

Keep a container of this brick-red pesto in the refrigerator to toss with pasta, stir into soups or salad dressings, or even to make the Scalloped Potatoes I'll be showing you tomorrow, or soon.

Makes about 2 cups
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2 cups sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained
1 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup (packed) fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup (packed) fresh parsley leaves
2 garlic cloves smashed and peeled
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Process all the ingredients in a food processor fitted with the metal blade until the mixture forms a coarse paste. (The pesto can be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated for up to 1 month.)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Pot-Roasted Turkey Drumsticks

It is so nice to see the top of my kitchen table again. Not a tomato in sight. The weather was perfect the week end for a little fall type food. In my opinion we don't eat enough turkey, especially the dark meat. If I had my way Thanksgiving dinner would be turkey thighs, drumsticks, and wings, and all the trimmings. Save the breast for sandwiches.

This dish gives a whole new meaning when it's turkey in the pot. I adapted this recipe from one of the cookbooks that Joyce sent in the hundred pounds box of books last week. The Everyday Turkey Cookbook by Frank Papai Secunda

I like to brine my turkey drumsticks for 8-12 hours in 1/4 cup of kosher salt per quart of water. Don't use table salt or it will be too salty. Dissolve salt in water and pour over drumsticks in a gallon zip lock bag. Refrigerate

4 servings
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3 1/2 cups turkey/chicken stock
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 large onion chopped
2 large carrots, cut into pieces
1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms
1 small cabbage, cut into quarters
4 turkey drumsticks, rinsed and patted dry with paper towels

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine stock, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, sage, salt, pepper, garlic, onion, carrots, mushrooms, and cabbage in a large Dutch oven an simmer 30 minutes.

Add turkey, cover, and bake 2 hours, or until drumsticks are tender when tested with a fork. Remove turkey with a slotted spoon and place on a warmed platter. Remove veg tables with a slotted spoon and place in a warm bowl. Pour cooking juices into a gravy boat and serve wit turkey and vegetables. Delicious!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Saint and Scripture Sunday

Well now, if I could remember this everyday I'd have it made!

to have a crisis and act upon it is one thing. To dwell in perpetual crisis is another - Barbara Girzzuti Harrison

Exaggerating the negative element in our lives is familiar behavior for all too many of us. But this obsession is our choice. We can stop at any moment. We can decide to let go of a situation that we can't control, turn it over to God, and be free to look ahead at the possibilities for happiness.

Perhaps we can learn to accept a serious situation in our lives as a special opportunity to let God work in our lives. We learn to trust by giving over our dilemmas to God for solutions. With patience, we will see the right outcomes, and we will more easily furn to God the next time.

Crises will lessen in number and in gravity in direct proportion to the partnership we develop with Him. The stronger our dependence on His power, for all answers and all directions, the greater will our comfort be in all situations.

Serenity is the gift promised when we let God handle our lives. No crisis need worry us. The solution is only a prayer away.

I will take action against every crisis confronting me - I will turn to God. Each crisis is an invitation to serenity.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Baked Stuffed Cucumbers

Maybe a cucumber now and then is not essential to your diet. It's food value is small. How could it be otherwise, being from 90 to 95 percent water. But it does contain vitamin C in a goodly amount and some of both vitamins A and B. Plus they are just plain good. Have you ever been in the garden and picked one, wiped the dirt off and eaten the whole thing. Wonderful! Always remember to take your sea salt to the garden with you for such occasions.

Baked Stuffed Cucumbers are a great dish for lunch or supper. Serve hot with a side dish of stewed fresh tomatoes.

Servings about 4-5
print recipe
The Gold Cook Book ( I love this book)

Select 4 medium-sized cucumbers. Cut in half lenghwise; remove the seeds and place in cold water for 15 minutes. Parboil about 4 minutes in a small amount of water.

Combine 1/2 cup of chopped left-over cooked meat with a cream sauce made with 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon flour and 1 cup milk. Add 1 or 2 chopped hard-cooked eggs, 1 teaspoon each of finely chopped parsley, chives and grated onion, and 1/2 cup of tiny celery cubes. Salt lightly, add a few grains of nutmeg and pepper; and fill the cucumbers. Top with buttered crumbs, and bake about 20 minutes in a 375degree F oven.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Garden Fresh Vegetable Soup

You will not have vegetable soup like this in the winter, not even with your canned and frozen bounty from the garden. The fresh vegetable flavors are shining through in this one. The short-ribs are not the star here so don't be tempted to double up, unless of course, you're doubling the whole recipe.

It is going to be really chilly here this weekend, perfect for this soup.

Servings 8 to 12
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1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound short ribs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 quarts of water
2 sprigs of fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
4 Roma or plum tomatoes, peeled and cored
1 medium red-skinned potato scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 medium turnip, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 cup fresh or frozen butter or lima beans
1 cup corn kernels (about 2 ears)

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over high heat. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper to taste. Cook in the oil, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes.

Transfer short ribs to a plate.

Add the onions, carrots,and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Return the short ribs to the top and add the water. Bring to a boil, skimming off any foam that rises to the surface. Add the thyme and bay leaf. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the short ribs are tender, occasionally skimming fat from the surface, about 2 1/2 hours.

Add the tomatoes, potatoes, turnip, beans, and corn. Continue cooking until the turnip is tender, about 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Remove and discard the thyme sprigs and bay leaf. Skim the fat from the surface. Serve piping hot.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Hungarian Cabbage

This is what's for Bible Study this week, from one of my favorite new cookbooks, The Gold Cook Book I mentioned yesterday. I know it sounds more like a fall or winter dish but when you have free fresh cabbage, why not. You can only eat so much cole slaw. And it is the time of year for all the free stuff that people don't want or need to can and don't want to waste.

About 4-6 servings
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Discard the outer leaves from 1 large green cabbage and shred coarsely. There should be 2 to 2 1/2 quarts of shreds. Cook in a large amount of boiling salted water, uncovered, 5 to 7 minutes, or until tender. Drain thoroughly and stir in 1 generous cup of heavy sour cream, scaled (heated) and seasoned to taste with salt, freshly ground black pepper and a dash of nutmeg (use fresh). When ready to serve, stir in 2 or 3 tablespoons of butter and 1 teaspoon of caraway seeds. Delish!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Corn and Egg Scramble Kentucky Style

Is there anything better than receiving a box of cookbooks from your best friend! That's what happened yesterday. Sweet Joyce not only sent fabulous cookbooks but, heavenly salami, and to die for baklava. If that doesn't make me feel better nothing will. I love all cookbooks, but old ones seem to be my favorite. I have not looked at even half of them yet but found three that I will never part with.

Joyce will laugh when she reads this because she mentioned the fact she couldn't remember where is got the book. I know! It was purchased at Caliban Book Shop - Rare and Scholarly Books in Pittsburgh, Pa. on April 2, 1998. Pretty creepy right! She left the sales slip in the book. haha

The recipe I'm sharing today is from The Gold Cook Book - Luis P. De Gouy, copyright 1947. The presentation is exactly like it appears in the book. I am using fresh corn and my own roasted red peppers. This would be perfect for breakfast, lunch or supper. For some reason I can see this for Derby breakfast with a big slice of country ham and big fluffy biscuits. I'm starving!

Your old cookbooks do not give you number of servings as a rule, but I'm saying three or four servings.

Corn and Egg Scramble Kentucky Style
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Take 1 cup of drained canned whole grain corn, or fresh boiled corn cut from the cob, and brown in heavy skillet in 4 tablespoons of bacon drippings,, with 1 small green pepper, chopped, 1 tablespoon of chopped parsley, and 2 tablespoons of chopped canned pimiento; stirring to keep it from sticking. When done, and just before serving, add 5 or 6 whole eggs, salt and pepper to taste and scramble all until eggs are set.

And that was dinner last night with garden fresh tomatoes.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Whine, Whine, Whine!

How can it be Monday already, plus the middle of August. I will never get caught up with this canning. Is it too early to pray for a hard freeze. I really need to whine for just a minute. If you don't have time to listen I understand. Just scroll down and read the recipe. A few months or so ago I pulled the muscles in my left arm, shoulder and down that side of my back. A little pain doesn't normally bother me, but I've also had a summer cold this week. What a baby! Yesterday was a good, fun day and decided to rearrange the canned goods into like produces. Wrong! In church yesterday I could hardly stand to be still. I have now managed to make the pain extend down my left leg.

I don't even have time to post a recipe because my friend Betty is bringing me a bucket of apples. That's okay, they'll look great next to the half bushel of Roma tomatoes spread out on my kitchen table. Maybe I'll mix them together and make a zillion jars of Tomato Apple Chutney. No, I don't have time to look for the chutney recipe right now. Later!

Thanks for visiting and letting me vent. I'll TRY to do better later.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Saint and Scripture Sunday

I've had a wonderful week and hope you have also. This is one of those meditations that's so hard for me to remember. Staying in the moment is not easy for me.

Let me tell thee, time is a very precious gift from God; so precious that it's only given to us moment by moment. - Amelia Barr

Where are our minds right now? Are we focused fully on this meditation? Or are our minds wandering off to events scheduled for later today or tomorrow perhaps? The simple truth is that this moment is all God has allowed right now. It's God's design that we will live fully each moment, as it comes. There in lies the richness of our lives. Each moment contributes to the full pattern that's uniquely our own.

We must not miss the potential pleasure of any experience because our thoughts are elsewhere. We never know when a particular moment, a certain situation, may be a door to our future. What we do know is that God often has to work hard getting our attention, perhaps allowing many stumbling blocks in order to get us back on target.

Being in tune with now, this moment, guarantees a direct line of communication to God. It also guarantees a full, yet simple life. Our purpose becomes clear as we trust our steps to God's guidance. How terribly complicated we make life by living in the past, the present, and many future times, all at once!

One step, one moment, and then the next step and its moment. How the simple life brings me freedom!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Spanish Gazpacho

This is the perfect time of the year for gazpacho. Everything is growing in the garden. This is my very favorite Gazpacho recipe, have used it since 1962. Have eaten and made gazpacho from recipes all over the country, this is still the best. It also was my first experience with cold soups. You will never guess where the recipe came from, New Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, published in 1962. Sometimes old is just better. Serve ice cold and make sure your cups/bowls and spoons are also cold.

A chef told me one time to NEVER use your blender to make gazpacho It should be chopped small by hand.

This is so nice for a dinner party because it will serve as both soup and salad.

Spanish Gazpacho
4-6 servings
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1 cup finely chopped peeled tomato
1/2 cup finely chopped green pepper
1/2 cup finely chop celery
1/2 cup finely chopped cucumber
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 teaspoons snipped parsley
1 teaspoon snipped chives
1 small clove of garlic, minced
2 - 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
2 cups tomato juice (homemade, if possible)

Combine all ingredients in a stainless steel or glass bowl. Cover and chill thoroughly - at least 4 hours, but not until the oil hardens. Very important to serve the soup in chilled cups, with chilled spoons. Top with croutons, sour cream or finely chopped cucumber.

Cook's Note: I fine chopping the veggies by hand makes a better presentation than using the food processor.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Oven Roasted Tomatoes

So sorry about this hit and miss posting I've been doing lately. Canning is hard work plus I've had and have a cold or something. My energy has gone by the wayside. I am making Oven Roasted Tomatoes for the freezer today. This is adapted from an old Southern Living recipe (2009). I have used canned tomatoes to make this, but with all the beautiful garden tomatoes now I'm using fresh today. I use these on pizza, in chili, etc.

Makes about 2 cups
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3 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, drained and halved, or about 5 pounds fresh
3/4 cup coarsely chopped sweet onion
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/3 cup olive oil
5 large cloves garlic, halved
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Place tomato halves in a colander, and press gently to remove excess liquid.

2. Stir together tomatoes, onion, and remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Place tomato mixture in a single layer in a aluminum foil-lined 15x10-inch jelly-roll pan.

3. Bake at 300 degrees F for 2 1/2-3 hours or until tomato mixture is deep reed and lightly browned, stirring every 45 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack 15 to 200 minutes or until completely cool. Store in an airtight container in refrigerator up to 3 days.

TO FREEZE: Place tomato mixture in an airtight container, and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw in refrigerator 24 hours.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Bread and Butter Pickle Remoulade

This is the perfect sauce to serve with your Fried Green Tomatoes or Fried Cucumbers. If you have any left over serve it on sandwiches or with boiled shrimp. Heaven knows I have no shortage of Bread and Butter Pickles. The sauce will keep in the refrigerator for about a week.This is the sauce served at Restaurant Eugene in Atlanta with their Fried Green Tomatoes.

Makes about 1 cup
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3/4 cup mayonnaise, regular or light
1/4 cup Creole mustard
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon finely chopped bread and butter pickles, I like a little more
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1/4 teaspoon file' powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Stir together all ingredients.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Corn-and Lima Bean Salad

Is this the perfect salad for this time of the garden season! All fourteen quarts of green beans are out of the canner and sealed. That always makes me happy. Green beans have not been that great this year, but the corn has been fabulous. You will love this salad, easy and fresh.

about 6 servings
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3 cups fresh corn kernels (6 ears)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup fresh baby lima beans or thawed frozen
1/4 cup diced roasted red bell pepper
1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

1. Saute' corn kernels in hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 3 minutes or until tender; add lima beans, and cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and let cool 10 minutes.

2. Toss together lima bean mixture, bell pepper, and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and chill 1 hour.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Am I Still Canning!

It's hard to believe I'm still canning. The season started early and I think it's going to run late. Today is Bread and Butter Pickles again. Thanks for the cukes Larry and Edie. I froze the best corn I have ever eaten on Saturday, Honey Select. Thanks David.

I need to take a day off and see what can be done about my house. Not to mention the pups need a bath. Our church Bake Sale is coming up. I can't think about all this stuff right now.

David, my sweet produce man, called early Saturday morning and ask if I could watch the produce stand for him while he rounded up his cattle that had escaped the pasture onto the road. He needed me now! Off I go in my pj's, actually they are yoga clothes, finger brushed my hair on the way. I looked good! Of course everyone in Loradale stopped by the stand while I was there. I think I have reached the age where I just don't give a crap. It was fun and he said he had a record breaking day. Certainly not because of me.

Thanks for stopping by. I'll get back to recipes in a few days. Have a great day!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Saint and Scriptures Sunday

This has been a sad week at my house and in the blogging community. Our beautiful friend Kary lost her battle with cancer a week ago yesterday. You can read more details here, and leave condolences for John, her husband, on Kary's blog, My Farmhouse Kitchen. It's amazing to me how you can become so attached to a person you have never met. I felt I had known Kary for years.

Treat your friends as you do your pictures, and place them in their best light. - Jennie Jerome Churchill

Taking your friends and loved ones for granted, expecting perfection from them in every instance, greatly lessens the value we have in one another's life. Being hard on those closest to us may relieve some of the tension we feel about our own imperfections, but it creates another tension, that may result in our friends leaving us behind.

We need the reminder, perhaps, that our friends are special to our growth. Our paths have crossed with reason. We complete a portion of the plan for one another's life. And for such gifts we need to offer gratitude.

Each of us is endowed with many qualities, some more enhancing than other; it is our hope, surely, that our lesser qualities will be ignored. We must do likewise with our friends. We can focus on the good, and it will flourish-in them, in ourselves, in all situations. A positive attitude nurtures everyone. Let us look for the good and, in time, it is all that will catch our attention.

I can make this day one to remember with fondness. I will appreciate a friend. I will let her know she matters in my life. Her life will be enhanced by my attention.

Sweet Kary, you may be gone but we will never forget you.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Corn Pudding

What am I thinking! The corn will be gone soon and I haven't even posted my favorite corn pudding recipe. Corn pudding is a true Southern delicacy, and one of the great treats of summer. I can have this for supper with fresh sliced tomatoes and a fresh from the garden green veggie and be quite happy. Maybe a little cornbread.

Makes enough to serve 6-8
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4 ears corn, husked and stripped of silk
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg If you don't have fresh nutmeg leave it out.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut the corn from the cob. Put the cut corn into a mixing bowl, sprinkle in the sugar, salt, and flour, and mix well. Mix the beaten eggs, milk, and cream together, and pour while stirring into the corn. Blend in the melted butter and nutmeg, and spoon into a buttered 6-cup casserole. Set the casserole into a pan of hot water, and bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown and just set. Test for doneness by inserting the blade of a knife into the center of the casserole. As soon as it comes out clean, the pudding is done. Don't overcook.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Fried Cucumbers

My dad absolutely loved fried cucumbers. He would find the biggest one he could that had started to turn yellow and bring it in for mom to fry. We all loved them. Don't use those little sissy cucumbers, it needs to be at least a foot long and as big around as the end of a baseball bat.

Number of servings will depend on the size of your cucumbers
print recipe

Beat one egg. Add 1 cup milk, or buttermilk. Peel and slice 2 or 3 cucumbers. Dip in about 2 cups of cracker crumbs that have been mixed with a 1/2 cup cornmeal. Lay out to dry a little, then dip in egg and milk mixture and then again in cracker crumbs. Fry in oil and butter until golden brown. Sprinkle with salt to taste.