Blog

A Basket of Treats

Autumn. Harvest time. The orchard trees bend heavy with fruit.

What do you like to do with a bowl (or basket) of apples?

Is pie your favorite? Or Cobbler? Or Applesauce? Fresh and crunchy? Baked?

One of the favorites when I was a child was a cake. Mother only made it in the fall. And when I was an adult and asked for the recipe… the reply was — their never was a recipe for that cake.

But like the good person she was, my mother gave it her best attempt. So I ask for pardon in advance — all measurements are approximate.

1 cup sugar, 2 eggs, 1 cup cream (heavy whipping cream), scant teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 2 cups flour. Mix by hand, adding dry ingredients to sugar and eggs, then add cream. Batter is thicker than cake mix cake. Pour into greased/floured 9×13″ pan. Top with rows of peeled apple slices — place slices touching but not overlapping. Top with generous amount of cinnamon sugar. Bake at 350 until toothpick in center comes out clean — 40-60 minutes.

For a modern story of a culinary student who finds more than expected in an apple orchard owner — try the sweet romance HIDING PLACES.

Kindle: https://amzn.to/2Jm26GQ

Blog

Top Reason to Eat Cake

Have you eaten cake recently? Within the last month? Week? Yesterday?

Perhaps you seldom bake. That’s fine. Many restaurants offer cake on the dessert menu. Too full after a meal out? How about a “to go” box?

A cake exists for almost every taste. My brother’s favorite is chocolate. I prefer Angel food. Lemon is a beautiful flavor for summer. Perhaps carrot cake is more to your liking.

Just in case you need a reason…

CELEBRATE WITH CAKE!

Blog

Friday Treat

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the final day of the modern work week!

During my working years, Fridays were important, but did not always signal the end of the week. That’s the thing about working in health care — it’s one of those 24/7 occupations. More than once, when working on a national holiday, I wondered out loud if we could convince people not to have accidents, heart attacks, or babies for a set time so we could take the day off. Hint: It didn’t work.

So you’ve been good — worked all week — want to treat yourself to something special.

Are you hungry yet? This is Black Forest Cake — perhaps you can find one at a bakery on the way home from work. Or some other flavor of cake. Then this evening — prepare your favorite drink, cut a piece of cake, and settle in with a good book. (If you select Comfort Zone you can read why the heroine makes a Black Forest Cake, why, and who she shares the first attempt.)

Kindle readers: https://amzn.to/2ZvL0Av

Nook readers: https://bit.ly/3bXU97a

Blog

Grandmother’s Pantry – O

When the day begins early you need a good breakfast — something with “staying power”

So in the pantry and fridge I began the day with Oatmeal and Orange juice.

What’s for later?

You’ll like it, Grandmother replied. I’m trying something new: fried Oysters with Oregano garnish.

My taste buds danced in anticipation. For as always at the table with such a meal, I’d find:

Olives of two different degrees of tart and Olive Oil to add sass to the salad.

Blog

Grandmother’s Pantry – E

In Grandmother’s Pantry I found…. Yes, in the “trunk” version of this game “elephant” and “eagle” were common.

Call me fussy — but I don’t care to eat either of those animals. (Okay, I’ve seen the recipe for elephant stew, but really, how many people are coming to dinner?)

The letter does give us a few other choices. The colorful eggplant comes to mind. I went looking for an eclair, but the supermarket bakery did not have any that day. So once again, I found myself going very conventional.

Eggs, chicken eggs, are a staple in most American kitchens. Good source of protein. Versatile. Boiled, fried, scrambled, or poached they make a fine dish for breakfast, lunch, or supper. And they are in important ingredient in many recipes. This handsome pair ended up next to last Friday’s dates in cookies.
Blog

Grandmother’s Pantry – C

What can we find on the shelf that begins with the letter “C”? Can we make a meal?

We have carrots and cucumbers in the fridge. Oh — I see grated coconut in the cupboard. Does the can of clam chowder count twice?

Yes, I’ve settled on a menu. I’ll make a meal of chili, crackers, and cheese — then wash it down with creme soda.

For today’s photo, I reached into the freezer (but this tasty food at various times can be found in a can, or in the produce drawer or garden fresh on the cob.

Yum! Sweet corn is a nice addition to lunch or dinner. I like mine with just a dab of butter.

Blog

Feast or Fun

What’s your first thought?

Let’s see…two cups of cooked pumpkin per pie equals…?

Or are you eager to pull out the knife and turn into a sculpture?

Perhaps paints to demonstrate your abilities in a different way?

However, you decide to deal with a pumpkin this season — I’ll leave you with the thought of ABUNDANCE — hundreds of pumpkins — so many in a season of plenty that we can turn them into temporary works of art and still have pie for supper.

Blog

Getting Close

Several years ago, as part of my research and promotion forĀ Hiding Places, [a sweet romance featuring an apple orchard], I took advantage of having an apple tree nearby and photographed it often.

It was interesting to view the bare twig (have I got the right tree) to blossom, leaf, forming fruit, and then…

Lunch box treat — I wonder if the employees of the adjoining auto body shop helped themselves? I think I would have. What about you?

Blog

Have you Eaten?

Did you have breakfast? Supper or lunch yesterday?

Thank a farmer!

No matter what was on your plate, in your bowl, or poured from your blender — a farmer was involved.

But I got it at the store?

Let’s follow the chain back, shall we. The store got it from a wholesaler and it most likely arrived on a truck. The wholesaler got it from a grower (farmer), in the case of fresh fruits and vegetables. Or they got it from a processor in the case of meats, dairy products, grain products, and specialty items such as sugar and coffee. So go back one more link — there’s the farmer, or grower, or fisherman — selling to the processor or cannery.

I’ll say it again — Thank A Farmer!

This proud farmer marks the spot for a local summer market.

 

Blog

Autumn Abundance

Autumn equals harvest time in the Northern Hemisphere.

As the daughter and granddaughter of farmers, I’ve been paying attention to the seasons all of my life. Much dependsĀ  on seasons and weather when growing crops and animals. And while my farming has dwindled to a tiny plot of garden – planted with hope every spring – I still pay attention.

Canada recently celebrated their Thanksgiving holiday. The United States will follow in late November. This is truly a time to reflect on the harvest — one farmer grows more than enough to feed his family. The abundance in the grocery store — with produce bins full of bright seasonal fruits and vegetables, a variety of mead and dairy products available, and frozen and canned foods available without the hours of prep work.

Abundance! Give Thanks!