Category Archives: cooking

A Day at Home

The kids have been home from school a lot lately with MLK Jr Day, Presidents’ Day, snow days, etc. Today, the three older ones were home for a teacher in-service. On so many of their other days off, I have just kept on with work projects I had to finish. Today, I acted like it was Saturday. Evangeline had a friend over to play, I cleaned a little, did a little laundry, did a little web surfing, fed kids, and forgot about most of the work things I had to do.

We ended the afternoon with the three older ones playing Candy Land with Charis, and with three of the four helping with making homemade pizza and Evangeline helping me to make homemade bread to take to shepherding group on Sunday. Here are a couple photos to help us remember the day:

The pizzamakers

The pizza mmmmmmmmm . . . . . .

Appliance Month

I dub November 2007 “Appliance Month.”  Now, I wish it were because I got all new appliances in my house, but it was not. 

First, a few weeks back, we had this stove installed in our kitchen.

I bought this stove from an older lady almost a year ago to replace the over 30-year-old brown version we had in our kitchen.  It took us a long time to get it installed because it is built into the cabinetry, and we just weren’t handy enough to do it ourselves.  While it is not new, it is a nice bright white, not ugly brown.  It is very clean, and it came with a white range hood.  It also has a working electrical outlet on the left side that allows me to use small electric appliances on both sides of my kitchen.  Finally, all the burners work.  Ugly old brown stove could boast none of these qualities!

The other appliance event of the last month involves the refrigerator.  We went to visit my mother in PA over the Thanksgiving holiday, and before we left, our refrigerator was making a whirring noise.  I was concerned that we would come home to a non-working refrigerator but not concerned enough to fit in having a repairman to come look at it before we leaving town.  My concerns were proven true.  We arrived home the Sunday after Thanksgiving to find our refrigerator dripping and warm.  Fortunately, the food was still salvageable, and we put all the non-frozen things in coolers and all the frozen things in our big freezer in the garage. 

(Some may remember that the same refrigerator went on the fritz last year just a few days before Christmas.  Hmmmm. . . Can appliances be allergic to holidays?)

We called for a repairman right away, but he wasn’t able to come until Tuesday.  He diagnosed the problem as a non-working fan, but, of course, he didn’t have one in stock.  He put one on order, and we continued to live out of coolers until yesterday afternoon, when our trusty repairman returned to install the new fan.

It wasn’t fun living out of coolers this week, but we managed.  On the upside, I took the opportunity to clean the inside of my refrigerator very thoroughly, and now it looks nearly new inside.  I even scrubbed the dingy gray door handles with some baking soda to get them looking white again.

I Could Eat an Entire Watermelon

Watermelon Martini

The watermelon this summer has been delicious–red and sweet and cheap.  Apparently all that extra rain in the early part of summer has yielded a bumper crop.  So today we had our third watermelon of the season.  I love it.  I could eat an entire watermelon “if I had a mind to.”

To celebrate the luscious red fruit, I encourage you to check out this recipe.  I haven’t tried it yet, but I plan to before the summer crop is all gone.

Mmmm Mmmm Good

Ann Barlow posted Biscuit for Strawberry Shortcakethis recipe on her site. I decided it was time to try it.

Over the weekend, there was some discussion among our children that I don’t make as many “homemade” things to eat any more.  So since we were down to only 2 children tonight, (one girl is at a sleepover; one boy is at boyscout camp),  I had them help me make the biscuits for the strawberry shortcake.  They enjoyed the process, but they were a bit surprised that something called “cake” is really a sweet biscuit.

Biscuit on the plateFor anyone who might want to know, the recipe yielded 12 biscuits, and after calculating the fat and calories from all the ingredients, I figured the fat at 8.75 g. per biscuit and the calories at 182.  If you make it with a no-cal sugar substitute, the fat remains the same but the calories are reduced to 150.  I thought about using something lower in fat for the butter and half & half, but baked goods are just plain better with the “real thing” in the fat department.  It’s not something I could eat everyday with those numbers, but it is certainly something that can be enjoyed in moderation.

OneYummy last thing, the idea of photographing the shortcake came to me because it just looks so pretty.  I have a small oven from the dark ages, and I blame many of my baking failures on it.  But the egg-white wash that is brushed on the dough before you bake these biscuits is like magic–producing the lovely gold color you see in the picture.  I also felt like since I took the picture of the naked biscuit, I needed to follow through with a photo of the fully dressed strawberry shortcake.

Everyone who passes through Anne’s blog knows she posts some great recipes.  I just thought I would show you that this one is so great even just an average cook can make it and have it look pretty.  So, run on over there and get the recipe.  Then make some for company!