Search This Blog

Sunday, January 31, 2010

French Peasant Bread

This is recipe is always devoured, especially when served hot out of the oven.   And it is so easy!


  • 1 Package dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
  • 2 C. Warm water
  • 1 TB. Sugar
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 4 C. Flour
  • corn meal
  • melted butter to brush over top

Combine yeast, water, sugar and salt and let it disolve. Add flour and stir until blended.(you don't have to kneed it). Cover and let rise hour or until doubled. (it is a pretty sticky dough). Flour hands remove dough and separate into two round loaves and place on a cookie sheet sprinkled with corn meal. Let rise one more hour or until doubled. Brush top with melted butter. Bake at 425 for 10 minutes, then reduce oven to 375 and cook another 15 minutes.

NOTES: I like to do half wheat half white flour or three cups white and one cup wheat. It's also very versatile and tastes great with fresh herbs mixed in.  (Rosemary is a favorite!)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Cranberry Bran Muffins

These are one of our favorite muffins.  The buttermilk makes the muffins super moist and the orange zest and vanilla offset the cranberry perfectly.  If cranberries are not your thing they are also fabulous with raspberries.  adapted from Martha Stewart


• 2 cups flour
• 1½ cups wheat bran
• ¾ t fine salt
• 1½ t baking powder
• ¼ t baking soda
• 1½ cups dark-brown sugar
• 1¼ cups plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
• 11 tablespoons unsalted butter melted & cooled
• 2 large eggs
• 1 T finely grated orange zest
• 2 t vanilla extract
• 1½ cups fresh or frozen cranberries (or raspberries)

1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with paper liners; set aside.

2. Place flour, bran, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Stir in sugar and set aside.

3. Whisk together buttermilk, butter, eggs, orange zest, and vanilla in a large bowl.

4. Add flour mixture; stir until just combined. Gently stir in cranberries.

5. Divide batter among lined muffin cups. Bake until cooked through and golden brown, about 30 minutes.

6. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly. Turn out; serve warm or at room temperature.  Makes about 2 dozen small muffins.

*NOTES: real buttermilk works best in this recipe.  Powdered buttermilk does not yeild as moist of a muffin.  A better substitute is milk soured with vinegar, but even this wasn't quite as good as the real thing.  I have also substituted 1/2 cup plain yougurt for the eggs due to Little Red's allergy and they are still good.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Zippy Barbeque Pot Roast

This makes your house smell heavenly and the melt in your mouth juicy barbeque is divine!
Source: Adapted from Southern Living Easy Weeknight Favorites
Time: 10 minutes prep, Slow Cook for 5-9 hours, Serves: 8-12
• 1½ t garlic salt
• ½ t pepper
• 1 (4-5 lb.) boneless chuck roast, trimmed
(I often only use a 2-3 lb. roast and it still serves 4-8 people).
• 2 T vegetable oil
• 12 oz. (1 can) of any cola-flavored beverage or rootbeer
• 1 (12-oz) bottle of regular chili sauce
• 1 T Worcestershire sauce
• 2 T hot sauce
• 3 T cornstarch
• ¼ cup of water or milk
1. Combine garlic salt and pepper; pat roast dry with a papertowel; then rub salt and pepper over thawed roast. Brown roast on all sides in hot oil in a large skillet.
2. Transfer roast to a 4-quart slow cooker. (Cut roast to fit in slow cooker, if necessary.)
3. Combine cola, chili sauce, Worcestershire sauce (and hot sauce)in a bowl; pour over roast.
4. Cover and cook on HIGH 5-6 hours or on LOW 8-9 hours.
5. Remove roast, reserving juices in slow cooker; keep roast warm.
6. Combine cornstarch and water/milk, stirring well [or put them in a jar and shake like crazy until no lumps remain] ; stir into juices in slow cooker.
7. Cook, uncovered, on HIGH 15 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Serve sauce over roast and/or with mashed potatoes.
*Note: Makes great left-over barbeque sandwiches...if you have leftovers. :o)


Time: 5 minutes prep time, 10 minutes cooling
Makes: about 12 cookies or 6 nests (3-4 inch diameter)


• ½ cup peanut butter
• 1 cup butterscotch chips
• 2 cups chow mein noodles
• ½ cup peanuts (optional)

1. Put wax paper on a cookie sheet or plate.
2. Melt peanut butter and butterscotch chips in the microwave for 2 minute on 100% power and then stir until all the chips are melted.  If needed, microwave again in 30 second increments at 50% power.
3. Add noodles (and peanuts), stir until well coated with a fork.
4. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper, let cool for about 30 minutes at room temperature.  You can put in the fridge to cool faster, but it may be a little more sticky.

Note: Also fun to make into nest shapes for Easter time and fill with eggs (marshmallows or egg-shaped candy).

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Five Chip Cookies


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 2 t baking soda
  • ½ t salt
  • 2/3 cup of each:
    • milk chocolate chips
    • semi-sweet chips
    • peanut butter chips
    • butterscotch chips
    • vanilla chips
    • *can substitute pecans, toffee chips, etc.
  1. In a mixing bowl cream butter, peanut butter, and sugars.
  2. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl combine flour, oats, baking soda, and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture.
  4. Stir in chips. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet, being careful that each cookie has a variety of chips.
  5. Bake at 350˚F for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned on the edges and not quite set in the middle.  Let cool for 1-2 minutes on the baking sheet, then remove onto a cooling rack.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Meet Big Red

When my darling husband "Baldy" and I were struggling with infertility for a few years, I would often ask him to tell me a bedtime story to help me laugh and hope for the future.  Inevitably these stories were about a house full of children and good times gathered as a family in the kitchen.  One of the main characters of the stories was Big Red, my trusty Kitchen Aid.  Big Red was there to make pancakes on Saturday, bread for dinner, and cookies for family night treat.  Now I have two darling daughters, whom for the sake of privacy on this blog will be known as "Curly" and "Little Red."  Big Red and I have baked up many good times and tasty treats with my girls and my husband.  I've decided to create a collection of some of my favorite recipes.  I realize there are plenty of food blogs out there.  But this blog is a way for me to organize my favorite recipes and my food photos and eventually slurp them into a cookbook.  Additionally, family members and friends often ask me for various recipes, so hopefully this can be a resource for them too.