Somersault Cobbler

I prepared this as a coffee cake for a Sunday morning treat. This one is in my Mom’s handwriting.

I used butter instead of shortening. I greased a 9-inch round cake pan for this and used a 350 degrees F oven. I liked the idea of cinnamon sugar topping which is why I thought of this as a coffee cake and not a cobbler. However, I remembered I had a can of pear halves and cinnamon would complement pears. I did add the egg.

It makes a nice light cake-y batter. Chopping the pears or slicing them might be better next time but it was a lovely light cake to go with our morning coffee.


Rolled oats mix

And now from the 1960s comes a homemade mix to use for baking biscuits, muffins, and cookies. This is from the USDA booklet published in 1962. It’s title is Family Meals at Low Cost. I have substituted butter for the shortening. Some of the recipes call for canned meat and dried eggs. Mom would send off for booklets like these from the state’s university agriculture extension center. I do not know if she made this mix. She did make the biscuit mix as her notes on the changes she made to the ingredient amounts are in here.

I made half the recipe and was able to use my KitchenAid stand mixer.

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (just because!)
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 Tablespoon salt
  • 3/4 cups butter, slightly softened but not too much

First I stirred the dry ingredients together and then the butter until it looked crumbly. Store in closed container in the refrigerator. Supposedly this will keep for one month. I immediately used half to make oatmeal cookies. I will most likely try the muffins next. For biscuits one adds water, for muffins add egg and water, and for cookies add egg, water and sugar. See below.

  • 2 1/2 cups rolled oats mix
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 egg, beaten (or not!)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips and 1/3cup raisins

Combine all ingredients and stir just enough to moisten dry ingredients. This was a wet cookie dough. Drop dough in teaspoonfuls on a greased baking sheet for 12-15 minutes at 375 degrees F.

This made exactly 24 cookies. I used a medium cookie scoop to portion out the cookies. I baked 12 and put the other 12 cookie dough balls in a freezer bag to bake later. This makes a very tasty oatmeal cookie.

Lemon Bread

This weekend’s treat from Mom’s green recipe notebook is lemon bread. The clipping is from the back of a Kroger flour bag from who knows when? Mom collected a lot of these recipe clippings and sometimes hand wrote and/or typed them out in red or black ink with her own adjustments. I don’t know how many of these she actually made. So this journey is for her. Thanks Mom for all the baked goodies that you did make and the ones you may have hoped to bake.

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk, I used unsweetened almond milk.
  • Grated rind of one lemon, it’s juice, and additional 1/3 cup sugar

This apparently doubles as bread or cake according to the recipe. We ate it almost all in one day; it was so tasty!

Preheat oven to 325 but I put it at 350 degrees F. Grease 9 inch x 5 inch loaf pan. I put a piece of parchment paper lengthwise to aid in removing loaf from the pan after baking.

Mix dry ingredients together in medium bowl. Cream butter and sugar then add eggs one at a time beating well each time. Here is where I added the lemon extract. Add dry ingredients alternately with the milk. I forgot to add the lemon rind. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes.

At this time warm the lemon juice and dissolve the 1/3 cup sugar in it. Here is where I added the lemon zest. This works nicely in a 1 cup Pyrex measuring cup in the microwave for about 20 seconds. Pour this over the loaf and return to the oven for 5-8 more minutes.

The best beef bourguignon ever

This does not follow my theme for the year but I just had to share/brag/boast/whatever!

In a Dutch Oven sauté a handful of bacon ends and pieces with a teaspoon of jarred minced garlic. Add 2 small onions chopped in large chunks and continue cooking until onions are semi-tender. Set aside in a bowl. Dredge 1-2 pounds of beef stew meat chunks (from a Top Butt) in ½ cup flour with some salt and pepper. Add a bit more oil to the pot and brown the beef, turning once. Set this aside in the bowl with the bacon/onion mixture. Add one cup of red wine to the pot and deglaze the pan scraping the brown bits on the bottom. Add the beef, bacon, and onion mixture back into the pot along with 2 small potatoes chopped in large chunks and 2 small carrots which have been peeled and cut into one-inch chunks. Cover this with 2 cups of beef broth and 1-2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce. Add more broth if necessary to just cover the goodies in the pot but not to drown them. Stir and bring to boil. Reduce heat and let simmer. This was allowed to simmer for the two risings of the home-made bread dough. Meanwhile in separate skillet place 2 tablespoons of butter and sauté 4 large baby bella mushrooms which have been sliced. Cook just until mushrooms are slightly softened and browned. Add a splash of Worcestershire sauce and set aside. When ready to put the bread in the oven, or after two hours, stir the mushrooms into the pot along with the reserved flour from the dredging of the beef. Continue to simmer the pot for the duration of the bread baking or 30-35 minutes.

We ate most of this before taking a picture. Here is what the leftover in the pot looks like. But no, the pic is not appetizing so I am not posting it, and this stew was fantastic. I do not generally rave about my own cooking but this was aromatic, flavorful, and rich-tasting. I served this with a homemade loaf of bread which is essential to clean the bowl to get every last drop!

Scones and the plan for 2022

Happy New Year!

I wanted a theme for my blog writing this year and wanted one that I would follow through with. I had tried writing through Betty Crocker but found the main dish recipes basic and bland, or more exactly, not exciting nor creative. Well, after all that cookbook is for basic cooking anyway. I have a number of cookbooks and would like to cook through them but commitment is the issue. I like to cook/bake what strikes my fancy. I thought of going through the recipe notebook of my collected recipes but then the thought “I could go through my mom’s green notebook” popped into my mind and stuck.

I got it out and read through the pages. She has put these in sections but the labels are faded and not easily read. I picked out several recipes in each section that are of interest. This is her baking collection. Although I did find in here a small booklet from the USDA on “Family Meals at Low Cost” using pantry staples published in 1962. These menus and recipes are to feed a family of five for three meals a day. No snacks included! These often use “canned chopped meat” which I do not have or buy or plan doing so! Lard and shortening are in most of these as well. In 1962 Mom was feeding a family of six on the minor salary of my Dad who was a social worker at the Children’s Home. Mom was by default a home economist, otherwise known as a homemaker. Erroneously described in some circles as “non-working”.

Today’s recipe is from the first section of the notebook which appears to be “breads and muffins”. I have chosen “raspberry jam scones” but will make them with blackberry fruit spread. I have altered the recipe slightly but not by much. This is a fancy scone recipe.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon each baking powder and sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • butter: 1/2 cup cold for the dough and 1 1/2 Tablespoons, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used unsweetened plain oatmilk)
  • 1/2 cup thick jam (I used fruit spread, about 1/3 cup)
  • sugar

Mix the dry ingredients together and cut in the 1/2 cup of butter. Being a more modern baker I took the lazy way and actually used my KitchenAid mixer to do this. Beat eggs slightly with the milk and add to the dry ingredients and mix until a soft dough forms. Turn this out on a floured surface and divide into two. Roll each section into a 10 inch circle. Place one half in a cake pan or baking pan. I used a 10-inch spring form pan. Brush with the softened butter and spread the jam on top. Place the other circle on this and spread the top with the rest of the softened butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake in a hot oven at 425 degrees F for 20 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve.

Notes for future reference:

  • this recipe could be easily halved and made as a single layer scone, perhaps in an 6-8 inch circle.
  • any kind of jam can be used, obviously.
  • possibly reduce the salt to 1/2 teaspoon
  • cinnamon sugar for the top might be a nice taste treat especially if making this in a single layer.