Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Rhubarb Cake

Well, as I mentioned yesterday, I have more rhubarb lying around than I know what to do with! And there's even more at my dad's farm to be picked! And being the frugalista that I am, we all know that I will not be letting all of that deliciousness just go to waste! Instead of making scotcheroos as planned for this week, I decided to use up the bounty that is rhubarb. I made a rhubarb cake...


...1 1/4 C. white sugar
...1 t. baking soda
...2 C. all purpose flour
...2 eggs
...1 C. sour cream
...3 C. diced rhubarb

Streusel Topping...

...1 C. white sugar
...1/4 C. butter, softened
...1/4 C. all purpose flour
...dusting of ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350*. Grease 9x13 inch pan. In a large bowl, stir together 1 1/4 c. sugar, 2 c. flour and baking soda. Stir in eggs and sour cream until smooth. Fold in rhubarb. Pour into baking pan and spread evenly. In a small bowl, combine sugar and butter until smooth. Add flour until clums form. Spread over cake batter. Dust cinnamon on top of everything. Bake at 350* for 45 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

My Thoughts...

This was good! I made some mistakes though, so I'm sure yours will come out looking different than my picture does. I accidentally only put in 1 C. sugar to the batter. So I accidentally shorted the batter 1/4 of a cup. I also only cooked mine for the 45 minutes, so that's why its pretty gooey looking. I was going to toss the rest back in to finish cooking, but this is very bread pudding-ish...and it's good! So I'm just going to leave it. Otherwise this is a great way to use up that extra rhubarb, and it's a nice change from the typical pies and crisps. I give this two thumbs up!

For more great recipes, check out the Recipe Swap going on over at Grocery Cart Challenge!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

We have a lot of rhubarb. A. Lot. Of. Rhubarb. My dad grows it on his farm, and I'm the only one who ever cuts it down and uses it. I just think it's delicious. Especially when combined with strawberries. Oh Yum. I made an amazing batch of strawberry rhubarb jam last week...and you can bet your buttons that I will be repeating that recipe many more times before the rhubarb growing season is over. But yesterday I decided to try my hand at strawberry rhubarb pie. It's my dads favorite. And seeing as we were having a grill out at his place, I thought I would make up a pie just for him (and the rest of us of course!) to enjoy on this patriotic holiday.

The Ingredients...

...1 C. white sugar
...1/2 C. all purpose flour
...1 lb. fresh rhubarb, chopped
...2 pints fresh strawberries, sliced
...2 T. butter
...1 egg yolk

Preheat oven to 400*. In a large bowl combine rhubarb, strawberries, flour and sugar. Stir until fruit is coated in sugar and flour. Let sit for 30 minutes.

In the mean time, ignore the pie crust in this picture. I was going to go premade. I then realized somewhere along the line I made a one crusted something which left me with only one crust to make a two crust pie...which is where these ingredients come in...

...3/4 C. oil
...1/4 C. milk
...2 C. all purpose flour

Combine all ingredients and roll out between two peices of waxed paper. Remove one side of waxed paper and flip over into pie plate. Peel off top layer of paper. Be sure to either grab two new pieces of waxed paper for the top crust, or flip the two you've already used and use the clean side for the crust to be rolled between.

Once the filling is ready, pour into bottom crust and then top with a few pats of butter. Place remaining crust on pie and brush with either an egg yolk or some milk and sprinkle with sugar. Be sure to poke openings for the pie to vent while baking. Bake at 400* for 35-40 minutes.

My Thoughts...

This smelled amazing while baking. When I pulled it out of the oven I was so disappointed by how terrible I thought it looked. But it certainly was delicious! I will definetely make this again before rhubarb season is up, and I will even make it in the winter with the rhubarb that I freeze! It was amazing!

To see more tasty treats (and a quite humurous story about grilling!), check out Tasty Tuesday over at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam! And for more great rhubarb recipe (I know I'll be trying them ALL!) check out In Season Recipe Swap over at Tammy's Recipes!

Menu Plan Mon...errr...Tuesday

Since yesterday was a holiday and we were out and about eating all kinds of delicious summer foods between our two grill outs I didn't get this weeks menu plan up...but I don't want to leave you in the dark on what to expect for the week (because we all know that I share the recipes for what I make :) ) So here's what's on tap for the week...

Not making a meal - grill outs. Took pea salad and strawberry rhubarb pie to said grill outs.

Chicken Roll Ups

Zuchinni, Carrot and black bean quesadillas

Ground Beef Macaroni Casserole

Homemade Pizza Night

Night out/or leftovers if we decide to stay home :)

Crockpot something...not sure what yet....any brilliant ideas? Anyone?

I also plan to whip up some chocolate scotcheroos to have on hand for a dessert-y type item for the week :)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Curried Rice Ham Rolls

When I first found this recipe in my Taste of Home Cookbook (Annual Recipes 1997, in case your interested. Page 92 if you happen to have the book on hand) I was truly excited to try it. The picture in the book looks pehnomenal and It sounded so delish! Well, it was delish, it just didn't look it.

The ingredients...

...1/2 C. chopped onion
...2 T. butter or margarine
...4 C. cooked brown or long grain rice (I only ended up using 2 1/2 and that was more than plenty)
...1 T. dried parsley flakes
...1/2 t. curry powder
...12 slices deli ham (I used lunchmeat ham)
...4 hard cooked eggs

Curry Sauce
...1/4 C. butter or margarine
...2 T. cornstarch
...1/4 t. curry powder
...2 C. milk, divided


Preheat oven to 375*. In skillet, saute onion in butter until tender (about 3 minutes). In a large bowl combine rice, parsley, curry powder and onion; mix well. Spoon mixture down center of ham slices and roll up. Place in 9x13 pan. Arrange eggs on top of ham rolls. To make the sauce, melt the butter in a sauce pan. In a seperate bowl, combine cornstarch, curry powder, and 1/3 cup of the milk; mix well. Add gradually to butter in saucepan. Add remaining milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Pour over the ham rolls. Cover and bake at 375* for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes.

My Thoughts....

This went horribly wrong for me. The flavor in the rice was good. The ham rolls were good. The sauce just didn't turn out whatsoever. I think it's because I definetely didn't combine the sauce ingredients seperately, I just threw them in with the butter. So the cornstarch clumped and hardened that way. This was good, but if you do choose to make it, make it so there aren't any leftovers...because this doesn't refrigerate well. Hubs liked it though, which surprised me immensely, so I might make this again, but it won't be for a while :)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Cheesy Bean Enchiladas

I love me some enchiladas! But I'm not such a fan of the sauce unless it's creamy, ooey, gooey and cheesey (great on the diet, I know, right). I found a recipe for an enchilada that fits all of my criteria, and then I altered it to fit my tastes. Here ya's a definite keeper in my book!


...1 can Cream of Chicken soup
...1 can Nacho Cheese Soup (I didn't have any, so I melted up velveeta and mixed in some milk to make my own!)
...1 1/2 C. Milk
...1/4 C. Salsa
...1/2 C. Shredded Cheddar Cheese
...Beans (I used about 1 cans worth, but they were ones I had precooked and frozen)
...Tortillas (I only used 4-5)
...1 can Enchilada Sauce
...1/2 C. Sour Cream


Preheat oven to 350*. Grease 9x13 pan (I used one just a bit smaller). In a bowl mix together soups, milk, sour cream and salsa. Pour enough of mixture to cover the bottom of greased pan. Add beans to remaining mixture. Use remaining mixture to fill tortillas and roll up tightly in pan. Pour enchilada sauce on top of enchiladas. Top sauce with shredded cheese. Bake at 350* for 20-25 minutes.

My Thoughts...

This was delicious! It's definetely a keeper and I'm glad I came upon this recipe and then altered it to my tastes! It's probably not the healthiest of all enchiladas, but it sure is yummy! This will be our "splurge" meal for nights we don't want to eat super healthy.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Crockpot Potato Soup

I love my crockpot. I love soup. I love soup in my crockpot. Actually, I love everything in my crockpot...mostly for the ease of preparation and the smell that floats through my house. Last weekend I decided to make some potato soup, so here ya go!

The Ingredients...

...6 Slices Bacon, cut up
...1/2 C. chopped onion
...1/2 C. chopped carrot
...1 can chicken broth (or 2 cups if you don't have canned)
...2 C. milk
...4 C. cubed potatoes (it took me about 6 medium potatoes)
...1/8 t. cayenne pepper (aka red pepper)
...1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (I just threw in a few small handfuls)


Place all ingredients in crockpot and stir together. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours.

My Thoughts...
This was good. Hubs suggested that I add some chopped green onion to the mix for added flavor. I think I will try this next time. Anyways, while this was good, it wasn't great. I think I'm going to try and find a different recipe next time. Hubs' favorite potato soup recipe is baked potato I think I will try that next time.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Let's Make Jam!

In an attempt to begin becoming more self sufficient, and to cut my costs at the grocery store, I am taking on making my own pantry staples. I decided to start off with jam. Strawberry Rhubarb Jam. YUMMO! I was super nervous when I started this process, I was so afraid that I was going to mess it up somehow! But it turned out to be a relatively simple process!

The ingredients...

...1 lb. chopped rhubarb
...2 lb. strawberries
...6 1/2 C. Sugar
...1/2 c. water
...1 packet liquid fruit pectin (I used Sure Jell Certo)

The directions...

Mash strawberries.... they resemble something like this. I used a potato masher and it worked wonderfully. Sadly, upon finishing the mashing, these eerily reminded me of the strawberries that my high school served with lunch often. Set aside.

Next, place rhubarb in the biggest saucepan you own (seriously. I used the one that I cook spaghetti in, and it was just barely big enough once everything got in there) with 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil, about three minutes, until rhubarb is soft. Add strawberries & sugar. Cook over high heat, stirring constantly until it comes to a rolling boil. Let boil for two minutes. Quickly add packet of pectin to the boiling mixture, and stir in. Resume to boil for one minute. Quickly pour finished jam into jars or containers (if canning, insert that process here). Let stand to cool for an hour or so and thicken up. Thickening process could take several days in refrigerator. Store in refrigerator or freezer (unless you canned). ENJOY!!!

My Thoughts...

YUUMMM!! This was delicious! And super easy too! I'm going to repeat this process once other fruits are in season so we have a wide variety of jams for the year to come, as well as some extras to give as gifts. I'm excited that this process turned out to be so easy!

To see more great recipes, check out 5 Ingredient Fridays over at Paige's Place and Recipe Swap over at Grocery Cart Challenge!

Monday, May 18, 2009


This is the story of two apples. Two lonely little apples that got left behind from the bunch because they were too mealy to eat but I just couldn't bear the thought of feeding them to the garbage disposal (mostly, because I don't have one. So I guess it was the garbage can that I couldn't bear the thought of.). I searched high and low for a recipe that called for a mere two apples. All I could find was recipes calling for 8 or more. Poor little guys. At this rate, the garbage can fate was looming nearer and nearer.

Until, a wonderful cook at AllRecipes answered my cry for help with these two little guys for a recipe for...are you ready for this...Apple Brownies.

Yes. Apple Brownies. I was a little leery, but upon reading the ingredients and directions discovered that this is no more than a lucious apple cake, so I'm not really sure where the "brownie" portion of the title comes in. So I went for it. And I must encourage you to do the same. Here is my interpretation of the recipe.

My Alliances...

...2 apples - peeled, cored & chopped
...1/2 cup butter, melted (or applesauce or plain yogurt if you want to do the healthy thing...)
...1 egg
...1 C sugar
...1 C flour
...1/2 t baking powder
...1/2 t baking soda
...1 t ground cinnamon
...1 t ground nutmeg
...1 t vanilla

The process...

Preaheat oven to 350* & grease a 9X9 dish. In a large bowl, beat together sugar, butter, egg & vanilla until fluffy. Fold in apples. Set aside. In another bowl, sift together flour, soda, powder, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir dry ingredients into wet mixture until just blended. Spread the batter evenly into the baking dish. Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

I also chose to frost mine. I used a half a can of Betty Crocker frosting (yes. canned. I wasn't in a "make the frosting from scratch" mood.) mixed with cinnamon and nutmeg. I didn't measure the spices into the frosting. I just added and tasted til it was right. And boy was it right!

The "brownies" in all of their deliciousness....
My thoughts...
YUUUUUUUMMMMMMMM!!!! These were a-maz-innnnnnnng! The spice to apple ratio was perfect, the moistness was out of this world, and the frosting really topped it off right! I can't wait to make this again, probably for a family gathering or something so I can share this love with others!
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