Thursday, January 31, 2013

Grapevine, Texas. A great American Town with great food and a great restaurant, Tolbert's Restaurant on Main Street !

We happen to love our small American town.

With so many American towns having to roll up the pavement and become ghost towns, our town is thriving.

There is so much that Grapevine has to offer and since this is a food blog, I have the right to blog about my favorite food in my favorite town.

Tolbert's Restaurant on Main Street is our go to restaurant in town.
If you ever get the chance to visit our town, you must eat at Tolbert's.

They are famous for their Texas Chili and a heck of alot of other good Texas fare on the menu, they also have an amazing variety of Beer on tap.
The atmosphere is pure Texas and the staff is darn right friendly.
And if it's entertainment you're looking for, the live music is the best.

I could write all day about the history of the family and the restaurant, or you could just go there and find out for yourself.

The proprietors, Kathleen and Paul are good people!
If they're there when you are..... stop and take time to introduce yourself and say Hi!

Thank you Kathleen for enjoying this Blog!

A Visit to Tolbert's!


now is the time to have a good breakfast.
continue to tend our gardens,
mind our manners,
courageously embrace compassion,
nurture the heart and begin
the next phase of the transformation
of the realms of humanity.

In your lives!

Texas Brittle !

This is a great treat to have at a party. It's not really a recipe. I created it by putting together some interesting Sweet and Salty ingredients to make a snack.

Miniature Pretzels (I sometime use Pretzel Sticks)
Corn Chips
Milk Chocolate Chips
Pecans, roughly chopped
Sea Salt
Cayenne Pepper

1- Rimmed Sheet Pan lined with Parchment Paper.

This is a recipe, without a recipe....... wow!
that sounds easy!

A few handfuls of everything and as much melted chocolate as you like,  based
on the amount of everything else you use.

Spread Pretzels in a single layer on the lined sheet pan
Top with Corn Chips.
Melt Chocolate and drizzle over the Corn Chips, I use a fork .
Immediately sprinkle with Pecans, Sea Salt and  Cayenne Pepper. (I have my Cayenne Pepper in a salt shaker to make it easier to sprinkle on the brittle)
Place in the freezer until the Chocolate hardens.
It took about an hour and then I made another batch.
Break into pieces and serve.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Superbowl Nuts! Chile Lime and Orange Spiced Cashews !

I'm not really a football fan and that's OK, not everyone is.

However, I know there are fans that are "nuts" about football
and especially the Superbowl.
Any Superbowl Party I've attended has always had a bowl or two, or three of just plain nuts, these would have been nicer to snack on!

I know Texans love spiced nuts and I've done the homework for you and here are two of the best versions of spiced nuts that I could find.
I still believe that the recipe I published earlier for the Union Square Cafe's Bar Nuts are also some of the best I've ever had.

I have to give credit to Martha Stewart for these two recipes.

As I researched spiced nuts, these two recipes came up often and they all gave credit where credit was due......... thank you Martha!

Chile Lime Cashews:

2 1/2 tsp coarse salt...... like Sel de Mer, or Sea Salt..... use the regular stuff if you need to!
1 tsp finely grated lime zest ( a rasp works well)
2 TBS Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1 large Egg ( white part only)
3 C Whole Raw unsalted Cashews

1 rimmed baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

preheat the oven to 350 degrees

In a bowl, using the back of a wooden spoon or a muddler ( I thought I'd use that word to sound like a fancy food blogger) but seriously, use a muddler and
grind the salt and the lime zest together.

Add Sugar, Pepper Flakes and Egg White.
Whisk together until frothy.
Add the nuts and toss to coat well.

Spread the nuts in a single layer on the sheet pan.
Bake 20 minutes

Separate the nuts, break them up and allow to cool completely.
You can move them to another paper lined sheet pan to do this, if you have another one.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Orange Spiced Cashews:

3 C Whole Raw unsalted Raw Cashews
1/4 C Light Corn Syrup
1/2 tsp Coarse Salt
1 1/2 tsp finely grated Orange Zest.... use the rasp again!
3/4 tsp Ground Ginger
1/2 tsp Ground Coriander
1/2 tsp Ground Cumin
A pinch...... just a pinch of Cayenne Pepper

2 rimmed baking sheet pans lined with parchment paper

In a medium bowl, mix Nuts with Corn Syrup until evenly coated, set aside!
In another bowl, combine Salt, Zest, Ginger, Coriander, Cumin and Cayenne
Sprinkle this mixture over the nuts and stir until evenly coated.

Spread the nuts in a single layer onto one of the sheet pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
Transfer the nuts to the second sheet pan, separate them and cool completely.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Meatless, a new Vegetarian Cookbook from Martha Stewart !

As a vegetarian, I rarely buy vegetarian cookbooks.
They all seem to be similar and a bit boring.

However, I got the new book by Martha Stewart titled, Meatless. It is truly
the best vegetarian cookbook I have ever seen.
I wrote to Martha Stewart Omnimedia,Inc. to thank them for publishing it.

It contains more than 200 amazing recipes.
It's a paperback which makes it very affordable.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Scalloped Apples, made with an Apple,Corer,Slicer,Peeler, " Thingamajiggy"

This is a Thanksgiving Favorite in our Family!
It's great any time of the year.

I wanted to recreate the flavor of Apples that we used to get at Luby's Cafeteria when I was a kid. I loved them and they always had them around Thanksgiving.  I created this microwaved version. They are exactly as I remembered them.
This mixture with Pecans and Raisins makes a great pie filling. Mix as directed and bake in a pie shell.

10 C peeled, cored and sliced tart apples (about 8 med. apples), of course it depends on the size of the apples.
This is the preparation stage of the apples.

After they're coated with the sugar and spices they are dotted with butter.
They are then microwaved with a cover slightly ajar.

This is the final product.

1/3 C Sugar
2 TBS Cornstarch
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground Nutmeg
2 TBS Butter
Raisins, Pecans or Dried Cranberries (optional)

Place Apples in a 2 1/2 Quart Microwavable Baking dish with a cover
Combine Sugar, Cornstarch,Cinnamon and Nutmeg in a small bowl and whisk well.
Sprinkle over the Apples and toss to coat well
Add Raisins and Pecans if desired
Dot with pieces of Butter
Cover and microwave for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes.

This is my Apple, Corer, Slicer, Peeler,   " Thingamajiggy ".
My father built a wooden stand for it.
This is the perfect recipe for this machine!

Peace in the Kitchen!

A busy weekend ahead !

I'll try to add some new recipes on Sunday afternoon.

I have an art project due on Sunday for an exhibit next weekend.

Until then,
Enjoy the blog, cook something interesting this weekend.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Magic Cookie Bars !

It's time , once more, to pay tribute to Aunt Faye.

"These terrific cookie bars couldn't be magic without Eagle Brand. 'cause you can't make them without Eagle Brand's exclusive blend of pure cane sugar and fresh whole milk.
No other milk can do it. Try some soon for your family - they're so easy ..' so delicious"!

That quote was taken directly from the recipe.

Magic Cookie Bars:

(makes about 2 dozen 1 1/2-inch X 3 - inch bars)

1/2 C ( 1 stick) Butter, melted
1 1/2 C Graham Cracker Crumbs
1 C chopped Pecans
1 C (16 oz. package) semi sweet chocolate chips
1 1/3 C (3 1/2 oz. can) flaked coconut
1 1/3 C ( 15 oz. can) Borden's Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk

Pour melted Butter in the bottom of a 9 X 13 inch pan.
Layer the rest of the ingredients:
Sprinkle the crumbs over the the melted butter
Sprinkle the Pecans evenly over the crumbs
Sprinkle the Chocolate Chips over the Pecans
Sprinkle the Coconut over the Chocolate Chips

Cover it all with the Condensed Milk

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until lightly browned
Allow to cool 15 minutes before cutting into bars.

I took the liberty to make some changes in the verbiage of the preparation.
The original recipe was a bit confusing!
However, they sound scrumptious, don't they?

Peace in the Kitchen!

Recipes, Art Project ? Recipes, Art Project?

I'm supposed to be working on a project that's been accepted into an exhibit next month.
The final works of art are due next Sunday.

I haven't worked on it at all this weekend.
I need to get away from the blog for awhile and work on the art project.


Crack Pie

What do Guthrie, Oklahoma and New York City have in common?

Crack Pie!

We travel through the entire state of Oklahoma to visit relatives in Kansas.
We stop mid way for lunch in Guthrie.

Guthrie is a charming old town filled with Antique Shops, Cafes, a Tea Room and our favorite discovery, Katie's Diner. Katie was the daughter of the original owners.

The owners, Aileen and Von are the nicest people and that's one of the reasons that Katie's Diner is always busy and the food is always great.
The menu is down home cookin' and the atmosphere is as American as Apple Pie!

Kaycee is on the wait staff and she's always there when we go and that's only twice a year for us, so she's established, always in a good mood and can handle a crowd!

Several years ago we discovered the diner and there was a sign on the wall  behind the register that advertised Crack Pie as one of the Pie choices. 
We ordered it and it is so good, you leave wanting more...... hence the name I suppose.

I asked Aileen if she would share the recipe and she told us that she found the recipe in an issue of Bon Appetit  Magazine and the pastry chef that created it was named Christina Tosi from New York City.

When I returned home I did my research and found out the story behind the pie and the baker!
Christina Tosi has become one of my favorite, up and coming, pastry chefs in America.
She is part of the staff that opened Momofuku Milk Bar in 2004 and her creations are innovative and far out!

She wrote and published her first book in 2011. It's titled:( MILK, Momofuku Milk Bar)

The recipes are like no others, original, contemporary and Christina has concepts about pastry and baking like no other chef I have ever read about. 

The next time we passed through Guthrie and ate at the diner, we bought an entire Crack Pie and took it to Kansas. Needless to say it was a hit.
On our way back to Texas, we stopped again and had lunch, talked about Crack Pie. I told Aileen I thought she should buy a pie case to highlight all of her incredible pies, and especially Crack Pie. She told me that pie cases are expensive and space was limited. I gave her some money and told her to save up for a pie case.
The next time we went back to the diner ......... Aileen and Von had a Pie Case!

We recently stopped at Katie's Diner and I told Aileen about my blog and asked her permission to tell the story about how we discovered a New York City baker's incredible Crack Pie in an incredible Diner in Guthrie, Oklahoma!

Thank you to Aileen, Von and Kaycee for doing what you do and doing it well.
We will always stop at Katie's Diner as long as we travel from Texas to Kansas!

I don't have permission to photograph the recipe from the book and it's too long to re print so you can look online. ( I final posted the recipe, you can find it here on the blog under)  Crack Pie / Cristina Tosi and Momofuku Milk Bar).

Peace in the Kitchen!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Cabbage Soup

This is definitely one of my favorite soups
A Best of the Best recipe!
It's a great comfort soup

Cabbage Soup:

1 large Cabbage, shredded
6 C Water
1/4 C Veggie Chicken Powder . For non vegetarians I would use 6 C of Chicken Stock or the water seasoned with Chicken Bouillon Cubes.
2 Onions, roughly chopped
6 Ribs of Celery, chopped
1 Shallot, chopped
6 Carrots, roughly chopped
6 Green Onions, slice the entire onion
1 small can of Tomato Paste
1 envelope of Onion Soup Mix....  You know the brand!
3 dashes of Balsamic Vinegar
6 Cloves Garlic, chopped
Juice of 1 Lemon
2 C V8 Juice
1 - 28 ounce can of Diced Tomatoes with the juice
salt/pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a large stockpot and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour
Remove from heat and allow to sit 1 hour
salt and pepper to taste.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Sweet Bell Pepper Soup

I use the mixed miniature red,yellow and orange peppers.

This is a Best of the Best Recipe!

8 TBS (Stick of Butter)
1 large Onion, chopped
2 TBS Paprika
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Dried Basil or Cilantro
2 pounds of miniature peppers, seeded and halved
5 C of Broth, your choice
1 tsp salt
1 pint of Half and Half

In a 5 qt. stockpot over medium heat,
melt Butter,add Onion,Paprika,Cumin,Basil. Stir often cooking for about 10 minutes.
Add Peppers and cook 10 minutes
Add Broth and Salt and simmer until Peppers are tender, about 30 minutes
Cool Completely
Blend in a Blender
Remove to a pan, add Half and Half and simmer to heat.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Red Pepper and Smoked Gouda Cheese Soup

This is one of the soups we had in Kansas last weekend.

It was purchased, so I did not have a recipe.
I created this one. This is truly an original recipe as I keep making changes to it.

Here's the final recipe and I believe it can be a Best of the Best!

I have another favorite Mixed Bell Pepper Soup that I will post later.

1 TBS Olive Oil
1 C diced Onion
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Pepper
1 1/2 tsp. dried Thyme
2 tsp. Paprika
1/8 tsp Sugar
1 - 14.5 ounce can diced canned Tomatoes, drained
2 - large  Red Bell Peppers, diced
1- 16 ounce jar of Roasted Red Peppers, drained  and roughly chopped
2 - 26 ounce cans of Tomato Soup
1 Quart of Whole Milk ( 4 C)
1 C of Heavy Cream
2 C Smoked Gouda Cheese, shredded

Heat oil: in a soup pot,
Saute Onion and Garlic until softened
Add diced Red Bell Peppers and continue to saute until they are softened.
Add the Tomato Soup and simmer about 25 minutes.

Strain the mixture , reserving the solids and the liquid separately. Return the liquid to the soup pot.
Place the solids in a processor and puree until smooth.
Whisk this mixture into the reserved liquid.
Add the diced tomatoes and the diced Roasted Red Peppers.
Continue to simmer for 10 minutes on low heat, do not boil
Whisk in Milk and Cream
Continue to simmer.
Stir in Cheese just until it melts.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Baked Creamed Spinach

I love Spinach,
I love Cream of Mushroom Soup,
I love French Fried Onions,
I love Casseroles.
I love a good Vegetarian Dish.
This recipe is very appealing to me.

Baked Creamed Spinach

2 packages (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
2 cans (10 3/4 oz.) cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
4 packages (10 oz.) frozen spinach, thawed and very well drained
2 cans (2.8 oz.) French fried onions
2/3 C saltine crackers, crushed (about 16 crackers)
1/4 C butter or margarine, melted

In a bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth
Add soup and mix well
Stir in spinach and onions
Transfer to a greased 2 1/2 quart baking dish
Combine crushed crackers and butter together and sprinkle over spinach mixture
Bake uncovered at 325 degrees for 35 minutes or
until top is golden brown and casserole is heated throughout

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Cooking this weekend, and Quilting!

I've been busy and it takes time to keep up with a blog. For those that don't know me, I'm also a Quilter and I have a piece that was just accepted for an art exhibit in February. The piece isn't completed (my quilting friends will totally understand this) so I'll  be very busy this weekend. I have to turn it in at the end of the month.

We went out of town last weekend, but I was inspired to add some new posts.
We went to Kansas to visit family.

My wife grew up on a Mennonite Farm and the neighboring countryside has many Amish Farms.
We go to an Amish Bulk Food store to stock up on products for the pantry.
I bought all of the ingredients to make my 70's Granola, so that will be made this weekend. I'll share photos.

We also stop at our favorite Diner in Oklahoma and I have a story to share about a Pie we ate there for the first time and how it's connected to one of my favorite pastry chefs in New York City.
I'll write about that this weekend and post the Pie recipe.

We get together with family when we're in Kansas and meals are an important part of the visit.
My wife, my mother in law and sister's in law are excellent cooks, we could easily create a family cookbook.
This time we had some incredible soup that was not homemade but purchased, that doesn't make it any less important to blog about. I was able to research several soup recipes and came up with my own, I'll post that too.

It's always a good time when we spend it sharing family memories and food!

It will be a very busy weekend of cooking and quilting!

More to come..........

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

2 tsp Olive Oil
1/2 C Chopped Green Onions
3/4 C Cooked Brown Rice
1 Clove of Garlic, chopped
1/2 C Canned Black Beans, drained
a pinch of Salt
a pinch of Cayenne
1 Bell Pepper ( any color) halved and seeded
4 TBS Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

Heat Oil in a saute pan
Cook onions until soft
Combine well and cook for another minute
Add 2 TBS of the Cheese and stuff the Pepper halves.
Place them in a baking dish and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Taylor Camp Muffins

Taylor Camp Muffins:

I named these but I don't think I can take the time to explain it.

Maybe someone that reads this knows the story.

This is a classic Hippy Muffin Recipe.

Non Stick Cooking Spray ( yes it was around in the 60's and 70's)

1/2 C Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 C All Purpose Flour
3/4 C Chopped Walnuts that have been toasted.
1/2 C Toasted Wheat Germ
1/2 C Brown Sugar ( packed)
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
2 Medium Carrots, peeled, grated.
1 Large Zucchini, peeled, grated
1/2 C Plain Yogurt
5 Whites, divided
1/4 C Molasses
1 TBS Orange Zest

Spray a 12 C Muffin Tin with Cooking Spray

Whisk together:
Wheat Flour
All Purpose Flour
Wheat Germ
Brown Sugar
Baking Powder
Baking Soda

In another bowl:
3 Egg Whites
Orange Zest

Fold Flour mixture into Carrot mixture and combine until moist.
Beat remaining Egg Whites with an electric mixer until a stiff peaked meringue forms.
Fold the meringue into the muffin batter.
Spoon into the muffin cups, filling to the top of each cup.
Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Peace in the Kitchen!

1970's Hippy Granola

I posted one Granola Recipe called Hippy Maple Pecan.

Here's another one that's Far Out and from the 70's

1970's Hippy Granola:

I toasted the Almonds, Sesame Seeds, Sunflower Seeds and Wheat Germ
in the oven at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes.
Stir them once and watch them carefully.
If I don't have Wheat Germ I've added Flaxseed. If I don't have Raisins I've added Dried Blueberries. You can substitute Pecans for Almonds, etc.
You can substitute ingredients as long as you keep the same amounts.

When I make this recipe, I double it. It never seems to last long.

2 C Rolled Oats
1 C Toasted Almonds
1/4 C Sesame Seeds
1/2 C Toasted Sunflower Seeds
1/2 C Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
1/4 C Toasted Wheat Germ
1 C Raisins
1/2 C Dried Cranberries
1/4 C Safflower Oil
1/2 C Honey

Mix together in a large bowl:

Drizzle mixture with Oil
Drizzle with Honey
Toss together to coat evenly

Place the mixture on a rimmed sheet pan ( you know, the one with an edge), or in a Roaster.
Bake for 30 minutes at 300 degrees, stirring every ten minutes.
Return it to the bowl.
Add Coconut, Raisins and Cranberries, mix well.
Return to the Sheet Pan or Roaster , break up the clumps, spread evenly and cool completely.
Store in an airtight container.

Peace in the Kitchen

The Hippy Food File! Baked or Grilled Tofu accompanied by a Slaw , Tofu / Vegetable Stir Fry , Sweet Potato Pudding , Hot Oats and Fruit Cereal !

I'm Vegetarian and I love Tofu.
I understand that there are those who don't and I'm OK with that.

I thought I'd share some Tofu Recipes for those that like it.

The first one is Baked Tofu with Lime and Agave, It can also be Grilled.

1 pound of Extra Firm Tofu, cut into 8 -  1/4" slices.
1/4 C Agave Syrup
1/2 C Low Sodium Soy Sauce
3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
3 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme
1 tsp black pepper
Juice of 2 Limes
1 1/2 TBS of Brown Sugar

Place the Tofu in a single layer in a shallow non reactive pan ( Clay, Enamel , Plastic, Glass or Stainless Steel)

Whisk remaining ingredients, (except the sprigs of Thyme) and pour this over the Tofu to marinate for at least 2 hours. Lay the sprigs of Thyme in the Marinade with the Tofu.
Remove the Thyme before baking,

Lightly oil  a baking sheet.
Use a slotted spoon to remove the Tofu ( reserve the marinade) and place the Tofu in a single layer on the baking sheet, bake for 15 minutes at 300 degrees. ( or at this time, the Tofu can be Grilled)

Place the marinade in a saucepan and cook over Med-High heat until it reduces to a glaze, about 8 minutes.
Drizzle the Glaze over the Tofu to serve.

Serve the Tofu with the following Slaw Recipe:

Whisk the following in a large bowl to make a Dressing:

3 TBS Rice Vinegar
1 tsp Agave Syrup
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
2 TBS Lime Juice
1 tsp Low Sodium Soy Sauce

Slowly whisk in 1/4 C Safflower Oil.

Add the following ingredients to the Dressing and toss to coat well:

1 Large Carrot, peeled and julienned.
1/2 Daikon Radish, peeled and julienned.
1/2 Head of Cabbage, shredded.
6 Green Onions, julienned.
1/2 tsp Sesame Seeds

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tofu / Vegetable Stir Fry

1 C  Diced Extra Firm Tofu that has been drained.
3 TBS Low Sodium Soy Sauce
2 TBS Chopped Fresh Ginger
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1 tsp Honey
2 TBS Rice Vinegar
2 TBS Vegetable Oil
3/4 C Sliced Carrot
1 C Snow Peas
1/2 C Sliced Green Onions

Marinate the Tofu in the following:
Soy Sauce
1 TBS Ginger
1/2 of the Minced Garlic
Set this aside.

Heat 1 TBS of the oil in a Saute Pan , cook Carrots until tender and remove to a bowl.
Add Snow Peas to the pan, cook quickly and remove to the bowl of Carrots.
Cook onions until soft, remove and add to the other vegetables.

Add the rest of the oil to the pan and cook the Tofu, until browned.
Add the Vegetables to the pan of Tofu, Toss until everything re heats.

Serve over Brown Rice and top with additional Soy Sauce.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Sweet Potato Pudding

1 Medium Sweet Potato or Yam
1/4 C Plain Greek Yogurt
Cinnamon, to taste( it doesn't take much of this or the Cayenne)
Cayenne Pepper, to taste

Pierce the potato several time with a fork.
Wrap it in a paper towel and microwave for 7 - 8 minutes, turning over half way through.
Remove and set aside to cool.

Cut the Potato in half and scrape out the inside into a bowl.
Stir in the Yogurt, Cinnamon and Cayenne until smooth.

Re heat in the microwave to serve .

Peace in the Kitchen!

Hot Oats and Fruit Cereal

2 C Frozen Blueberries
1/2 C Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
1/3 C Pomegranate Juice
2 TBS Chopped Walnuts
1 TBS Raw Sunflower Seeds
1 Banana, sliced

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl
Microwave for 3 minutes and serve warm.

Peace in the Kitchen!

1968! Peace and Love !

1968! Peace and Love!

I was a 60's child.

I spent the summer of 67' hanging out at the beach, earning money by painting flowers on people and flowers on rocks.

I wrote poetry and loved all of the music of the 60's.
I ate Granola and Zucchini Muffins and Organic food and at one time I worked at a shop called The Village Green in Birmingham, Michigan.

We made candles and soap and we macraméd clothing, plant hangers and door coverings for our dorm rooms or wherever we lived.
We played guitars and the piano and sang songs of freedom.

I graduated from High School in 1968 and I started College in 1968. It was a very eclectic time in the world.
I didn't care what color you were , where you came from or what religion you practiced. I believed that we should love all people from all parts of the world.

I was a care free spirit and I wanted nothing more, in the world , than to have everyone live in Harmony and Peace!

I was a Peace Corps Volunteer and I spent time living and backpacking around Europe which gave me an opportunity to embrace people and cultures that I had never experienced before.

I loved to cook and I learned about food in other cultures.
Today I had a flashback to the 60's and I began researching and writing recipes that I remembered back in the days of Health Food and Organic Food.

I will post them soon.............
until then,

Peace in the Kitchen!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Strawberry Clafoutis Cake

One of my favorite recipes , and a Best of the Best Recipe is my Blueberry, Blackberry Cornmeal Cake.
I wrote on the recipe that any Berry combination would work and that I use Cranberries for Thanksgiving.
Strawberries would also work in this recipe.
The recipe is on the Blog.

I also am a fan of the French, Cherries Clafoutis.
I have been researching Clafoutis Recipes and I also have my favorites.
I've also read that there are many people that expect a cake like texture when they first taste a Clafoutis, instead of the typical custard texture. I really don't mind the texture of the custard consistency.

I began experimenting with a cake like batter, less liquid, which gives the Clafoutis the same look, but a more dense, almost poundcake like texture.

So here is my Strawberry Clafoutis Cake:

1/2C Butter, softened
1/2 C sugar
1 egg
2 TBS Heavy Cream
1 tsp Almond extract
1 C all purpose Flour
3 C of halved Strawberries.

I the bowl of a stand mixer, on high,beat together the butter and sugar until very well combined and the sugar has had a chance to break down.

Reduce the speed to medium and add the Egg, Heavy Cream and Almond extract and continue mixing.
Gradually add the flour, just until well combined and the batter is moist.

Pout the batter into a 1 quart oval dish greased with Pan Release ( recipe is on the Blog under Tips, Hints and More!
Arrange the Strawberries on top and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Peace in the Kitchen!


Back to my love of French Cuisine.

This recipe originated because of the Poteaupre Cheese made by the Monks at the Chimay Abbey in Belgium.

4 large Potatoes
2 Onions
2 TBS Butter
Fresh Sprigs of Thyme
3/4 lb. diced Poteaupre Cheese, rind removed.
2 tsp Chimay Triple Beer.

Peel and wash potatoes, boil in lightly salted water.
When they're cooked, cut them into thin slices.
Cut Onions into circles, soften in butter until they brown and add the Thyme.

Place potatoes in a Bram.
Add the Cheese and Onion.
Mix Cream with the Chimay and pour over the Potatoes.

Bake in a pre heated oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tex - Mex Pull Apart Bread

Tex - Mex Pull Apart Bread:

1/2 C butter, melted
1 1/2 C Shredded 4 Cheese Mexican Blend
1/2 C Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1- (10-12 ounce jar) of Pickled Jalapeno Nacho Slices, drained
1 tsp Dried Cilantro or Dried Coriander Seeds
6 Green Onions, sliced. Use all of the onion.
2 - 12 ounce tubes of any refrigerated biscuits, each biscuit cut into quarters.

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl, mix well
Fold in the biscuit pieces until well combined.

Place the mixture in a Bundt Pan or Tube Pan, coated with vegetable spray
Bake for 30 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.

Invert onto a serving platter and accompany with your favorite Salsa for dipping.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

5 Cent Chocolate Candy Bar Pie ?

5 Cent Chocolate Candy Bar Pie:

Another of the archived recipes from my Aunt. ( I am definitely going to try this one after I research the size of the candy bars) I haven't checked yet....... I'll add a note if I find out.

Note: Apparently the recipe was well known, there are many variations of the recipe. It looks like the size was 1.5 oz / 43G.
A variation was definitely made with the Almond Bar, I will probably do that

I'm trying to figure out if that 5 cent chocolate candy bar was as simple as a Hershey's candy bar.
It states that you can make it with plain or almond.
It doesn't state the size, maybe there was only one size in those days.

So, here's the recipe:

5 - 5 cent Chocolate Candy Bars, plain or almond
16 - full sized Marshmallows
1/2 C Milk
1 C whipped cream ( about 2/3 of a 1/2 pint bottle of Heavy Cream) I find this amusing!
1/8 tsp salt
1 - 8" shell, either cracker or crum pastry.  (Do you think it was Graham Cracker)?, I don't know!

Melt Candy Bars, Marshmallows and Milk in the top of a double boiler.
Add salt and fold in Whipped Cream.

Fill the Pie Shell and garnish with Slivered Almonds.
Chill thoroughly.

Peace in the Kitchen!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

The One Armed Bandit!

I posted a recipe from Taylor's grandmother ( Dan Dan). There's a Tall Texas Tale about how she became to be known as Dan Dan.

Taylor's grandfather was Marsh Farmer, alias, The One Armed Bandit.
Of course there are many Tall Texas Tales about his name too.

Marsh and Dan Dan at one time , lived in a far west Texas town.
They farmed Alfalfa and Milo.
Marsh also had a sideline of Barbecue Sauces and an amazing Barbecue Seasoning.

I recently received a copy, dated 1940, of a recipe hand written by The One Armed Bandit.
We all got a kick out of the handwritten addition of the half recipe.

They eventually settled in Ft. Worth, Texas

Here are some photographs  I wanted to share.
The first one is taken from Texas Monthly Magazine - Aug 1990.
It's an Ad for his Authentic Barbecue Sauce and Seasoning.

The other one is his handwritten Corn Bread Recipe and it's dated 1940.
And then the ever so humorous 1/2 Recipe, as if we couldn't figure that out on our own!
That was part of the charm of The One Armed Bandit!

Cracker Bark! ( that's what I call it)

You talk about a recipe being around forever!

Where have I been ?
I just discovered this one and when I saw it on a cooking show, I thought it was the cook's original, old timey, been around for years, family recipe!

After doing my research, I found out that it has indeed been around for many, many, many, years and may have originally come from the Kraft Kitchens.
So many variations with so many names!
I chose to call mine Cracker Bark!

So I can't claim a single thing about this recipe as being my own.
There are so many variations that are tasty looking!

It's not appealing to look at, it's a bit messy, but the outcome is ..... well.... just make it and see for yourself how yummy it is!

If you haven't seen this  before then I don't feel so bad!

Cracker Bark

Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees

30 - 40 Saltine Crackers ( you know, the ones your mother broke up and threw in your soup bowl)!
2 sticks of Butter...... Oh my!
1 C Brown Sugar
2 C Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips...... Oh just use Hershey's
Sea Salt.... the French in me!
2 C roughly chopped Pecans..... This may be where I make it my own!  the Texan in me!

Line 2 Jelly Roll Pans ( sheet cake pans with sides) with aluminum foil and coat with a vegetable cooking spray. You can bake both pans at once on two racks.

Arrange the Crackers salt side down in a single layer to cover the pans.

In a saucepan, melt the Butter and Brown Sugar and bring it to a boil, boil for 3 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and pour evenly over the crackers.

Bake this delectable concoction for 5 minutes, it will begin to bubble and then you can remove it from the oven.
Sprinkle it with Sea Salt, however much you want! Make sure it's from the beaches of Normandy, or whatever you have in your pantry.

Pour the Chocolate Chips over the top and when they begin to melt, spread the Chocolate evenly with an offset knife.
Sprinkle the Pecans evenly over the Chocolate.

Transfer to the refrigerator or freezer for about 20 minutes.

Remove and break into pieces and store in air tight containers.

Don't eat any until your guests arrive, or your family, or if no one's coming over, just eat it yourself!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Texas Hash Brown Nests

I've mentioned prior to this that I research and edit recipes.

When I find something I like, I research it,  dissect it, re-create it and make it my own.
This is an adaptation of a recipe from The Muffin Tin Chef.

I've been working on a new recipe this week .
I photographed ( photo to follow) the notes that I'm working on to give you an idea of how crazy the process is.

Here's the recipe:

Texas Hash Brown Nests

3 C of frozen Hash Browns, thawed and blotted with paper towels to remove excess liquid.
2 Eggs, beaten
3/4 C Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 TBS Adobo seasoning
Freshly ground Black Pepper, to taste
1 1/2 C Shredded Cheddar Cheese, garnish
1- 4 ounce can of Chopped Green Chiles, drained, garnish
1- 16 ounce container of Sour Cream, garnish
1/4 C Fresh Chopped Chives, garnish
Bacon for garnish / Bacon Bits for Vegetarians, garnish

Pre heat the oven to 450 degrees
Spray a 12 Cup Cast Iron Muffin Pan, or the 7 Cup Cast Iron Biscuit Pan with a vegetable cooking spray, or whatever Muffin Pan you have!

Mix together:
Hash Browns
Parmesan Cheese
Adobo Seasoning
Black Pepper
Mix well!

Scoop 1/4 C of this mixture into each well and press to covet the bottom and sides.
Spray again with cooking spray. This will give them a nice texture!

Bake for 25 minutes.
Remove from the oven.
Loosen the nests slightly with a paring knife but don't remove them from the pan.

Cool them in the pan for about 5 minutes and then remove them to a serving platter.
These can be served with a Poached Egg on top...... yummy!
What a great Brunch idea!

To Assemble:
Everyone can customize their own nests. ( notice the plural.... make sure you've made enough)

Fill each nest with the garnishes:
Cheddar Cheese
Green Chiles
Sour Cream
Chopped Chives
Bacon or Bacon Bits!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Many thanks to followers around the world!

As a Blogger, I can track information about the Blog.
I wanted to take this time to thank all of my international followers.

I have traveled the world extensively and I embrace all cultures.

So.... at this time I want to personally thank followers in:
United Kingdom
Bosnia and Herzegovina
New Zealand
South Africa
Saudi Arabia
South Korea
Trinidad and Tobago
Burkina Faso (Africa)
Antigua / Barbuda
Dominican Republic
El Salvador
United Arab Emirates
Northern Mariana Islands

And The Good Old U.S. of A.!

I hope everyone knows that you can translate the blog in any language you choose.
Find the link (translate) on the right side of the page.

Thank You All!
Peace in the Kitchen!

This makes it all worth while!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A Hippy Poem !

One day while strolling
far from home.

I thought of just
the perfect poem.

It was so profound
I began to race,
to find the perfect writing place.

From my pocket
came a pen and pad.
I thought, where is that poem I had?

Too late ,  the verse
had left my head.

So, I decided to write
this one instead!


Hippy Maple Pecan Granola !

Hippy Maple Pecan Granola:

This is Far Out Man!

10 C Rolled Oats
2 1/2C Roughly chopped Pecans
2 1/2 C Pure Maple Syrup
2/3 C Canola Oil
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Salt

Line 2 sheet pans ( the ones with an edge) with Parchment Paper

Mix all of the ingredients in a large hand made groovy 60's pottery bowl!  I know you all have one!

Spread the mixture evenly on the 2 sheet pans.
Bake both pans together on 2 racks at 300 degrees for 15 minutes.
Switch pans, stir and continue to bake another 15 minutes.
Stir again
Bake another hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
Cool completely
Break into pieces and store in your favorite 60's covered pottery canister! You know, the one that matches that bowl!

Peace in the Kitchen!

Some Hippy Enlightenment!

Nothing to do with food, but the Hippy in me thought it was groovy for the blog!