We were going to make tuna noodle salad to have for dinner on one of these hot summer evenings. Hubby likes to put raw onion in these salads; I can do without. But we have Vidalia sweet onions in the pantry and these are easier to eat raw. Hubby says to let him make the salad as he knows how to. I abide by his wishes and agree to just cook the elbow noodles so they would be cooked and chilled for his return home from work.
But this did not turn out to be tuna noodle salad made with elbow pasta…
So first of all, I found no elbow pasta in my pantry. I had two whole boxes in there recently, or so I thought. I did have these curly pasta, cavatelli, capatelli, something like that. I cooked all of that up; it was almost the entire pound package.
Hubby comes home and I start looking for the tuna. We have no tuna in the pantry; we have only one can in the Camper. This is not enough so he searches through the fridge for his ingredients. He leaves the tuna out altogether.
Can you guess what is in there? I have no clue what spices and herbs he used. But it was a very tasty dish and we had it for two suppers.
I do know some of the ingredients. He used broccoli, green pepper, Vidalia onion, shredded cheese, chunks of cheddar cheese, chunks of a beef summer sausage, and carrots.
Hubby had a food event at work. He was to bring something. These little treats are his go-to. Super simple and tasty, with a little spicy bite!
- one package ham slices, 14 ounces
- one package cream cheese, 8 ounces
- jalapeno peppers from jar, as many as suits your taste
Soften the cream cheese; chop the peppers. Combine these using some of the pepper juice to make a spread. Spread on slices of ham. Roll up lengthwise and cut into thirds. Serve with toothpicks.
So my house needed cleaning. I did eventually get around to it but not before I found lots of other things to pay attention to. And baking is one of those things that is easy to get lost in especially when the weather in Southern New England switches from summer to winter every other day! This past week seems to have alternated rainy cold days with warm sunny “sit in the backyard with a cocktail” days.
This recipe is from my standard 1978/1969 Betty Crocker Cookbook. I chose not to make the sour cream coffee cake because I had cow’s milk in the fridge that needed to be used. This can be made in a 9-inch square pan or a 9 x 13 inch pan. I chose the 9-inch square.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup raisins (my addition)
First of all, I only had 1/3 cup butter in the fridge. I did not want to wait for the frozen butter to thaw. And I will need 3 more tablespoons of butter for the streusel. What to do? I have a handy dandy jar of coconut oil in the pantry. It really is not an appropriate substitute for butter but for oil, but I have used in for cookies in the past, so went for it anyway. So I used 2 Tablespoons coconut oil with 3 Tablespoons butter in the cake.
Make the streusel by mixing all together the following:
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (I may have added some to the cake as well)
- 3 tablespoons butter (I had 2 of butter and 1 of coconut oil)
- 1/2 cup chopped nuts (I had used all the nuts earlier in the week so left these out)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. For the cake beat all of the first list of ingredients in a mixing bowl for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Lightly grease the pan and spread 1/2 the batter in the pan. Sprinkle on half the streusel. Spread the remaining batter on top and then sprinkle with the rest of the streusel. Bake for 35-40 minutes.
Oh, and I mixed in a quarter cup of oats with the streusel.
The 9 inch square pan needed 45-50 minutes to bake completely.
The amount of streusel was barely enough. I don’t think it would have worked at all as layering in a 9 x 13 inch pan. In future make twice the amount for either sized cake.
This is a nice moist cake. I will make it again. I may have actually made it a long time ago as I vaguely remember having the same thoughts about the amount of streusel.
A friend of mine showed me an article in the NYTimes about Procrastibaking. Good article; you should read it. I don’t work from home but I do have urges to bake in order to avoid things like…deep housecleaning, another load of laundry, clearing out the sewing room, sorting books from the shelves to give away to the library. I love books. I love having several books piled askew on the coffee table, bedside stand, etc. It is very hard to give away books.
I read the article; I baked brownies. I may bake blondies as well. Depends on what else I want to put off doing…
But this is not about books. Well, I do write about recipes from my 50+ cookbooks. (These are not being sorted through to give away. Not yet.) I find that I have been cooking less from recipe books. I throw things together and may look something up for an idea of a flavoring or additional ingredient. So for supper I wanted to make rice along with the vegetables and I made a pilaf, AKA rice with peas and carrots. 🙂
- bag of instant brown rice (Success is the brand, 10 minutes in boiling water and its done)
- 1-2 cups frozen peas and carrots
- 1 small onion, chopped
- a few colorful peppers, chopped, I used 3 red mini-peppers and 1 yellow mini-pepper
- olive oil for the pan
- a few shakes of soy sauce
Cook the rice. Put oil in a skillet and saute the onion and peppers. Stir these a bit. When they have a few nicely browned bits, add the peas and carrots. Stir and add the soy sauce. Mix with the hot rice. Voila!
I made an apple pie with a crunch topping. I was trying to make a crumb topping but it was very crunchy, tasty but very crunchy. I had a bunch of apples that needed to be made into a pie or a brown betty. Hubby voted for pie. There were some Empire, some Gala, and some Granny Smith apples. I sliced up about eight of them which made 4 cups. I had a pre-made, bought pie crust, just one so I had to make a topping.
I made the Cinnamon Add-a-Crunch topping from my handy-dandy Quaker Oats cook booklet. Thinking on it now, the “add-a-Crunch” should have given me a hint as to the outcome! I love crumb toppings that use melted butter. Makes it so much easier to mix than “cut together with fork until resembles…”
- 1 1/4 cups quick or old-fashioned oats, uncooked
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 1/3 cup wheat germ (I actually have this! It’s great to sprinkle over the waffle batter before you close the lid on the waffle iron.)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
The actual recipe says mix this together and cook in skillet for 5-7 minutes and then spread on cookie sheet to cool. I figured it would cook on the pie so I just mixed it all together and added 1 cup of chopped walnuts as well.
Make your apple pie. Spread this topping on top. Bake your apple pie. Voila! Very pretty.
My pie was tasty but the apples did not meld together in any fashion. I had to serve this in bowls. I may have forgotten to pat the top of the apples with butter, but that can’t have been the problem. I never cook my pie fillings first and other apple pies have turned out like pies. I don’t make apple pies frequently enough to experiment like America’s Test Kitchen. I have had this same problem once or twice before which I attributed to the type of apple and/or size of the apple slices. But I sliced these apples in thin slices.
We ate the pie. We enjoyed the pie. It just wouldn’t have won any prizes!
Hello all! I have not posted for awhile. One would think that writing would be a good way to get relief from the stress and burn out from work, but I apparently did not have the discipline to do so. So here I am again. One of the difficulties is that I will make and bake the same things again and again. There’s not much new or interesting in writing about that. I searched my blog and do not believe that I have told you about Hubby’s way of managing leftover spaghetti. Techniquely this is not “spaghetti” pie in that I made it with elbow macaroni but this will have to do.
So on a Monday I sliced up two green peppers, one red pepper, and two onions. I put these in the crock pot along with one 14.5 ounce can of stewed tomatoes, one 8 ounce can of tomato sauce, and 1 teaspoon of Italian Seasoning. Oh, and 6 sweet Italian sausage links. These cooked on low while I was at work for 8-10 hours. The aroma was wonderful when I walked in the door in the late afternoon.
When I put all this together I was not sure if we would be eating the sausages on bread as sandwiches or over pasta. Being uncertain when I got home I cooked too much pasta. And Hubby was correct, we did not have spaghetti noodles, but we had oodles of elbow macaroni noodles. We had our dinner of pasta and sausage sauce.
Leftovers make a spaghetti pie. Depending on the amount of leftovers we will alter the amount of additives. Lots of leftovers make a 9 x 13 inch pan. Not so much, we use a pie pan.
Gather any leftover meats and vegetables and cheese you need to use up. We’ve had a leftover pork chop, ham, breakfast sausage in our pie before. Clean out that produce drawer, mushrooms and half chopped onions work well here, carrots too. Add these to your leftover pasta. If needed add a can of diced tomatoes or tomato sauce. I use 2 cups or so frozen mixed vegetables also. Mix in 2 eggs for a pie pan, 4 eggs for the bigger pan. Place the entire mixture into your pan. Top with grated or sliced cheese if desired. Cover with foil. Bake in 350 degree oven for 45-60 minutes. Remove the foil for the last 15 minutes. Dinner is served!
Another recipe adapted from Eating Well Magazine Spring 2004.
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (This is because I did not have ground cloves and I figured this would take place of the 1/2 t. nutmeg, 1 1/2 t. cinnamon, and 1/2 t. cloves. Now, in hindsight, I could have used my Gingerbread Spice Mix. Live and learn!)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar ( I had light brown)
- 1/2 cup honey (I had a wildflower honey not the dark honey of the original recipe which also called for 2/3 cup. I used all that I had.)
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 2 teaspoons orange zest (instead of lemon zest; again I used what I had.)
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1/2 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger (optional but I love crystallized ginger so I have thi in the house. It is wonderful to chew on a small piece for a snack.)
Prepare a 9 x 13 inch pan by spraying with cooking spray. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
Whisk dry ingredients. Beat together the eggs, oil, honey, and brown sugar. Blend the dry ingredients with the egg mixture and zest. Add boiling water as you go along. Mix just until fully blended. I used my stand mixer and this took a very short time.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes. The top should spring back lightly when touched. Cool in pan on wire rack.
Our first piece we ate warm. It is a light version. The honey does not give quite the same flavor as molasses. I could taste the orange zest which surprised me. I would call this a honey ginger cake. The bits of crystallized ginger were very tasty. Hubby liked it a lot. He said an addition of raisins would have put it over the top. I would make this again.