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An old favorite

Our church recently held an old fashioned "barn-raising" type activity to build a new mission house right on the church property. If you would like to see pictures the church has a Facebook page which they update frequently to show the progress on the house. The newest pictures seem to be at the bottom. The men of the church volunteered to help with the building process and the ladies helped prepare the food. A large number of desserts were requested and this cookie recipe was perfect since it makes a large number of really good cookies. Of course, as one of our relatives used to say, you could always cut the recipe in half so it would make less.

Mrs. Field's Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup margarine or butter
1 cup shortening (I used butter flavored Crisco)
2 cups sugar
2 cups brown sugar
2 tsps. vanilla
4 eggs
5 cups oatmeal (blend in blender or food processor to make oat flour)
4 cups flour
2 tsps. baking powder
2 tsps. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 cups chocolate chips

In mixer cream margarine or butter, shortening, and sugars. Add vanilla and eggs. Blend oatmeal to make oat flour. Put oat flour in a very large bowl along with the other dry ingredients. Add the creamed mixture to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. You may need to use your hands. Mix in the chocolate chips. Use a cookie scoop to form cookies and place on cookie sheets. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 mins. If using small scoop this will make about eight dozen delicious cookies.

When life gives you tomatoes, corn, and zucchini…

You could make this easy recipe:

Zucchini, Tomato, and Corn Salad

1 medium zucchini (cut into small cubes or julienned--I used my julienne peeler)
1 cup cooked corn (simmer 3 mins, cool and drain or use canned or leftover)
1 medium tomato, diced
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
dash pepper
1/2 tsp sugar
Italian salad dressing or vinegarette--just enough to moisten vegetables

Combine prepared zucchini, corn, tomatoes, seasonings, and Italian dressing. Serves 2-3.

I tried another new salad this week that uses corn, tomatoes, and green peppers.

It was this delicious Cornbread Salad from the Southern Plate website. I cut down the recipe a bit since it was just two of us and for the dressing I used mayonnaise, a small amount of dry Ranch Dressing mix, and some buttermilk. I also scaled back on the bacon. We ate it with this Balsamic Glazed Chicken that Rob grilled. We thought both recipes were very good and worth repeating. 🙂

Do you have a favorite corn, tomato, or zucchini recipe?


Our trip to Ohio

Earlier this month we headed North to Ohio and Michigan. While we were in Ohio we were blessed to spend time with friends and family members. We spent one night with our friends Scott and Cathy.

Scott and Rob have been good friends since Junior High School when they met at church and Cathy and I are second cousins. Her mom and my dad were cousins. She will be facing a rather complicated hip replacement surgery (her second this summer) next week and I know she would appreciate your prayers for her. We had a wonderful time visiting with them and wished we could have stayed longer. We enjoyed several delicous meals that they prepared, including breakfast when they made this Cream of Brown Rice recipe:

Family Favorite Cream of Brown Rice

For each serving:
1/3 cup cream of brown rice
1 1/2 cup milk
1 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsps. maple syrup
1 tsp. flax seed
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
Pecans or walnuts as desired

Bring milk to a boil then add the cream of rice. Stir for four minutes and then add the other ingredients. To prepare in the microwave use only 1 cup milk and cook in a one quart container for 2 mins. Let stand for two minutes.

This was really tasty and was something we had never tried before. Have any of you ever tried Cream of Brown Rice? It is gluten free and might be something you would like to try for a special breakfast for someone who must avoid wheat or gluten.

Here's what the package looks like:

Here's a picture of the finished product:

We also visited with my Aunt Nana and her cat Ellie May.

We visited Rob's mother in the nursing home and while we were visiting Rob's sister, Deb and her husband, Dan also came for a visit. Megan and the children were with us at that visit and so they all got to meet little Maddie for the first time.

Our major complaint any time we travel up North is that there just isn't enough time to spend visiting with all those we would like to see and spend time with. We are thankful that we were able to make the trip even though our time was limited.

I'll post more of our travel adventures in some upcoming posts.


A peachy recipe

Our grandson, Ryan, came to visit yesterday while his parents were busy with other obligations. He is fifteen months old now and toddles all over the place, is trying to climb on the furniture, and delights in vehicles with wheels. We spent quite a bit of time with a couple of little Thomas trains and a small race car. I would push the car or train and then he would chase it and bring it back and we would do it over again. Here is a picture of him with Grandpa:

While Ryan was napping I tried a new recipe for Peach Handpies. The original recipe was for Strawberry Hand Pies but I had peaches from the farmer's market that I wanted to use. I also changed up the method a bit. Here's how I made the recipe:

Peach Hand Pies

2 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 stick butter
1 egg
1/2 cup cold water (plus additional as needed)
1/2 tsp. vanilla

About 2 cups peeled, chopped peaches
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3 Tbsps. peach jam
a bit of milk
sanding sugar (or regular granulated sugar)

Stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter with a pastry blender. Mix together the egg, water, and vanilla. Add the liquids to the flour mixture to form pastry dough. Use extra water if it seems too dry. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill about 30 mins.
Meanwhile assemble the filling by combining all the ingredients.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or foil.
Divide the chilled dough into six parts and form each into a disk. Roll out each disk to a 6" round. Place filling in center of the round and then fold over the dough and crimp the edge with a fork. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 30-35 mins. or until golden.


Another trip to the farmer’s market

In a recent post I mentioned that when we were up in the Raleigh area a few weeks ago my friend, Cathy, took us to a state farmer's market. Unfortunately I had forgotten to bring my camera that morning so the only pictures we got were a couple that she took in the restaurant on her phone. She recently sent me a few pictures of the actual farmer's market that she took on a later trip.

These pictures show some of the lovely produce available:

We saw a vegetable there that we had never seen or heard of before; pointy headed cabbage. Have any of you ever heard of this or tried it?

Megan and the children were here this past week visiting and over the weekend we took them up to the Cincinnati area where Jim met us and then we all drove to our respective homes. Rob and I stopped at a visitor's center in North Carolina and I picked up a few brochures about Western North Carolina. One of them was from the state farmer's market in Asheville. I saw in the brochure that it had a restaurant too. We called and found out that they would still be open when we were driving by so we decided to check it out. We purchased a few items from the market and then had a very enjoyable meal at the restaurant which is called The Moose Cafe. I would highly recommend it if you are ever in the area.

Here's a rather generic view of the market itself:

Here's the sign for the restaurant:

Here is the giant mascot and a view of the hundreds of canning jars which are part of the decor:

This is the lovely view we had from our table:

This was my meal; cornbread, vegetable soup, chicken and dumplings, green beans, and coleslaw (we had already polished off some fresh biscuits with apple butter!):

If you are ever in the Asheville or Raleigh area I would definitely recommend that you check out the state farmer's markets.