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Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Okay, here is a really good deal.  Ebates is a site that pays you cash back to shop on-line places you would anyway.  If you sign up with this link Ebates, you will get $5 to start your cash back account.  My daughter bought all her phone accessories and will get quite a bit back.  Great idea and deal!  Always try and save all I can this time of year!


We are now on Twitter!  Moving on into the future.  I have to say "we", because Mark is sure it is his blog too.  It really is, he helps with the pictures and cooking some of the food.  Naelyn is great at the pictures as well and took the Thanksgiving shot.  Thank you all for following along.  Great buy on Amazon for Polar Express, only $8.99 and you get to watch it yourself for two days for free.  If you have any little ones to buy for that don't have this, makes a wonderful present, especially if you wrap it with a bell, a special mug and some hot chocolate!  You can sign up for Amazon Prime free trial and get the shipping free too.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Have not posted in a few, busy with the holiday!  Here is my favorite and easy, after Turkey day recipe.

Turkey and Dumplings

Turkey Soup

Turkey and dumplings:
Anything that is left on the veggie platter, chopped small
Leftover Turkey
Leftover Stuffing
Leftover Potatoes
Leftover Green-bean casserole
Leftover Gravy
1/2 cup milk mixed with one tablespoon of cornstarch (if needed to thicken)

Saute the veggies in a 6 quart pan until soft.  Add left overs and stir until combined.  Fill with water until almost full.  Be sure to leave enough room to simmer and simmer on low for 3 hours.  Remove any bones and skin from pot.  Add milk and cornstarch and bring to a small boil.  You can also start this on low in a crock-pot or slow cooker early and turn to high when you get home, bring to a bubble then add dumplings.


2 cups Bisquick
2/3 cup milk
1 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons pepper
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons Italian seasonings

Mix the ingredients and drop into the boiling soup.  Let cook ten minutes uncovered, cover and cook for another ten minutes.  Enjoy!  We did tonight and another day of food is done!  Yummy!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Chili Rellenos!

People have requested this, so I guess I will give up our secret recipe!  Mark and I were a whole lot more thoughtful this spring and summer about supporting local business's and farms.  It was very important to us to try support the places we loved to go, without blowing our own, diminished budget.  We started shopping at the farmers market for all our produce and found, not only were we getting fresh locally grown foods, we were getting it cheaper than we could in the grocery store.

We started finding and changing recipes to suit or tastes.  With so many wonderful veggies it was fun.  Here is our very favorite for the whole season!  Enjoy.

Chili Rellenos

The first thing I do is make my Pico de gallo or Salsa Fresca or use the salsa from this blog if you canned some :

6 large tomatoes, diced medium
1 medium onion, diced small
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Jalapeno, minced
1/2 a cup cilantro, chopped
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 lime, squeezed for the juice
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate until ready to use.  You can freeze any leftovers.

8 Anaheim peppers
1 cup grated colby jack cheese
1 cup leftover meat, chopped or shredded (great way to use leftover roasts or rotisserie chicken)
6 eggs
salt and pepper to taste
toothpicks (plain wooden)
1/4 inch of frying oil in the bottom of a large skillet or frying pan

On the grill or in the oven roast as many peppers as you want to stuff and eat now and some for freezing if you want.  We like the Anaheim peppers best, but use Poblano or your own favorite.  Roast until skin is charred all over.  I then put mine in a paper bag for at least a half hour.  This allows the skin to steam and makes it easy to remove.  While waiting for the peppers to stream, I grate about a cup of cheese for every 8 peppers.  This is Tillamook Colby Jack.  I get whatever left over meat I am going to use, chopped or shredded finely.  This is left over beef roast.
Relleno Prep
Gently use finger to split pepper.
Remove seeds.
Now remove the skin from your peppers.  You can use a dry paper towel and gently rub the skin off, or just use your fingers to peel it off.  Then lay pepper down on a flat surface and find a crack or place where it will split, run your finger up the pepper pressing gently.  It should split easily. Once they are all split, take them to the sink and remove all the seeds, this is where a lot of the heat is.  Lay on a paper towel to dry.
Gently wash out remaining seeds and skin.

Dry on paper towels.
Gently pick up a pepper and stuff with cheese and meat.  It does not take much and you need to be able to close the pepper with a tooth pick after you are done.  You will get a feel for it after the first few.  Then close with two or three toothpicks. Don't worry if you can see the filling.  Once they are dipped in the egg batter, the filling will stay put if you handle them with care.
Stuff with cheese, then meat.
Close with two to three toothpicks.
Heat oil in your pan until medium to medium high temperature is achieved.  While the oil is heating, in a non plastic bowl crack eggs, dropping only egg whites in an reserving yolks.  Beat whites until peaks are stiff, add salt and pepper and gently fold in the lightly beaten yolks.  Gently add one pepper at a time to the batter and fold batter over the top until covered, remove and add to pan.
Beat egg white until you have stiff peaks.
Add salt and pepper and egg yolks.

Gently fold in egg yolks.

Add peppers to batter one at a time and gently cover with batter by scooping it over the top.

Fry until golden brown and then flip.
Yum.  Take out and blot with a paper towel when browned on both sides.
Serve topped with salsa, sour cream and a side of beans and fresh tortillas, YUMMY!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Easy as Apples

We were lucky in a few ways this year as far as our gleaning went.  Our wonderful neighbors Terry and Shirley not only shared all of their left over tomatoes with us, but also all of their canning jars.  This was wonderful and truly a windfall for us.  Thank you again Terry and Shirley for all!!!  Then our friend Bonnie told us we could come out to the farm and glean apples.  We really went to visit with her, but also got lots of apples.  We came home and this is what we did.

Apple Butter/Sauce

Wash all the apples
Cut all the apples into quarters (do not take out cores or seeds)
Fill to one inch below the top of a six quart pan with the apples
add 1/3 cup honey
add one teaspoon of salt
add 4 cups water

Cook down until apples are tender, about the same as you would cook for mashed potatoes.  Add cooked ingredients a small amount at a time to a food mill.  I find cranking 3 times to the right and once to the left seems to speed it up a bit.  Process all the apples this way and add to a crock pot, cook on low for 4 to six hours until apples are a medium brown for apple butter, stirring occasionally.  For applesauce add back to pan, bring to a simmer, cook until you get the consistency you would like.  Hot pack into canning jars leaving half inch of head space.  Put in boiling canner, process for 10 minutes, here is a chart to help with elevation times:

Altitude Adjustments for Boiling Water Bath Canner
Altitude in Feet
Increase processing time
5 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
20 minutes
Remove from canner when processed and allow to cool, listen for those lids.  I love that POP!  We did two batches this way, one of butter and one of sauce.  Here is our reward!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Laundry Day at the OK!

Okay, so I didn’t actually keep my promise to post the week after my last blog.  Got sick and then sicker, but am feeling a little better now.  I actually was busy doing things when I was feeling okay in prep for my blog.  Let me share what I found!  Laundry soap!  
These ingredients cost me $7.58 cents at Winco.  Imagine making the equivalent of 10 gallons of laundry soap for that price.  Not only that, I will at least three more batches from the borax and super washing soda, only having to purchase the Fels-Naptha for $2.50 a bar for the next batches.  This means 30 gallons of laundry soap for 12.58…..crazy talk.  How can you do it too?  Well easy, here is the recipe and some pictures to follow along with.  I got this recipe from the Duggar Website, they have 19 children who all manage to look clean on TV, so I figured it must work and it does.  Here is their site, if you care to look.
Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap- Front or top load machine- best value
4  Cups - hot tap water
1  Fels-Naptha soap bar
1 Cup - Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda*
½ Cup Borax

- Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.  This takes about 20 minutes, so it's nice to have someone else around to take over in case your arm gets tired.  Mine got tired!

 -Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.

-Stir and fill a used, clean, laundry soap dispenser half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use. (Will gel)
-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil.
-Yield: Liquid soap recipe makes 10 gallons.
-Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)
-Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)
*Arm & Hammer "Super Washing Soda".  Baking Soda will not work, nor will Arm & Hammer Detergent - It must be sodium carbonate!!
If you have a stubborn stain, pour a little on the stain, rub in and let sit for at least 10 minutes before washing. Even worked for our daughter who has sensitive skin!  Good luck and enjoy the recipe and the clean clothes.