Sunday, June 30, 2013

In a Jam

There was a strawberry sitting on a kitchen counter crying his eyes out, two strawberries were walking by and asked him what was wrong.  That's when he told them, his parents had got into a jam!

Strawberry jam to be precise, from the Better Homes and Gardens "You Can Can - A Guide to Canning, Preserving, and Pickling.

Rather than having my jam on an English muffin or toast, I thought a late night snack on a cracker with gorgonzola cheese would be delicious ~ and it was!

You could also use the jam to baste a chicken, roast pork or maybe some ribs on the grill!  Mmm.

3 quarts fresh strawberries, hulled
1 1.75 ounce package powdered pectin
1/2 teaspoon margarine or butter
7 cups sugar

1. Crush 1 cup of berries in an 8-quart pot. Continue adding berries and crushing until you have 5 cups crushed berries. Stir in pectin and margarine. Heat on high, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a full rolling boil. Add sugar all at once. Return to boiling; boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; skim off foam.

2. Ladle immediately into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars, leaving a 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims; adjust lids. Process in a boiling-water canner 5 minutes. Remove jars; cool on wire racks.*

*Note:  As the jam cools, turn the jars occasionally, top to bottom, to help evenly distribute the fruit and prevent the fruit from floating to the top of the jars.  Store upright, however, to protect the seal.

Nutrition Information
Per 1 Tablespoon Serving:  51 calories, 0 g total fat, 0 mg chol., 1 mg sodium, 13 g carbo., 0 g fiber, 0 g protein

Friday, June 14, 2013

Seaside Garden

Over the years I've always wanted a garden at our coastal cottage.  It took a while, and it's finally happened.  We started with new cedar fencing, turning the soil, edging with granite - oh man was that stuff heavy!!!  Then trying to decide what to plant!

A beautiful peony, behind that is a white Rose of Sharon, and flanking that are two Little Lamb Hydrangea's.  I have lovely blooms from June through October.

The white fence you see below is my brother's property.  We have EXTREMELY different taste!  I'll leave it at that!  LOL!!!!  The important thing is, we love each other and we have fun!!!

We added a portable fire pit, some little decorations such as the bird-house planter & the cute bird-house light-house feeder.

Then we added  a side garden, and that seems to be purples & blues.  I'm thinking of moving all of it and keeping the theme white . . . what do you think?

Peony bud

Duke, taking time to smell the herbs!
I love playing in this back yard garden and the small one in the front. I need to do some major weeding tomorrow!!  Thankfully our lot is tiny, all the lots in our neighborhood are 40x100, I don't think I'd trade it for anything!  It's peaceful, relaxing, we have great neighbors and I can hear the ocean at night!

I hope you enjoyed my little seaside garden tour.

One Year Ago

click recipe title to go to this post

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Luscious Veggies

Simple, delicious and healthy!

There's a little story behind these peppers. I went to an education dinner with my husband and these peppers were one of the side dishes. We both took some, because we both like peppers. As I was going through the buffet line I thought to myself, well, this isn't rocket science, I'm sure I can make them myself.

I cooked these amazing peppers for a side dish last night. They were delicious and we loved them! They roast up beautifully in the oven, and are sweet and delicious for any meal. They have lots of good color and are a healthy side dish option! I hope you like them as much as we did!

Peppers (washed & dried)
Olive Oil
Balsamic vinegar
Fresh ground pepper
Sea salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
Wash your peppers and dry them (so the olive oil will stick)
Give a grind of pepper 
Sprinkle a pinch of salt
Toss and add to a baking sheet
Bake for 25 minutes
When the peppers come out of the oven, drizzle about 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar over them, toss again and serve!

These are also good pickled, I'll share that recipe too if you'd like, just let me know!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Spiral Lemon Bundt Cake

The real star of this recipe is my new Nordic Ware bundt pan!  I've been using the same bundt pan (stoneware) for about 15 years and lately it takes an act of congress to get it out of the pan in one piece - that is without it looking like someone took a bite out of the top!  

Off to one of my favorite kitchen stores in Acton, MA with the hubby.  Look what I found, this Nordic Ware Heritage bundt pan!  I went back and forth between the traditional looking pan (that just the kind of gal I am) and this spiral pan.  It took me about 30 minutes to make a decision!  Who in their right mind looks at bundt pans for thirty minutes?  My hubby was also surprised with my choice!  He said he would have bet money on the other Nordic Ware pan!

When I tipped the pan after the cake had cooled, it literally fell out!!!  Wow, not little bite marks on the top that I had to paste back in!  I'm going back to get the traditional one - it's huge and it will feed my family!  

love the points
I got 8 nicely sized delicious servings from this cake!  And lots of "oohs & aahs."

Two Egg Cake Recipe
½ cup butter (room temperature)
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon lemon
2 eggs
2 ¼ cups flour (sifted)
¼ teaspoon salt
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 cup + 2 tablespoons milk

Cream shortening, then add sugar and vanilla.  Add eggs, one at a time.  Add flour alternately with milk.  Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes depending on size and kind of pan used for baking.  Test with a cake tester at the 30 minute mark.  My cake took 35 minutes.

cooling on the rack
Lemon Glaze
2/3 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice, fresh
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (optional)

Put the sugar in a small bowl.  Add lemon juice and rind.  Whisk together until smoothe and well blended.

Drizzle over cake and swoon!

waiting to get dressed

One Year Ago

P.S. I was in no way compensated for posting about the Nordic Ware bundt pan ~ although I'd be thrilled if they would send me their 12 cup anniversary pan!  LOL!!!