Farmer's Daughter

Although 20+ years removed from the farm, farmer's daughter is still a title I enjoy.
Growing up on a farm taught me many invaluable lessons, two of those being frugality and creativity.
Now as a wife and a mom, I love to put into practice what I learned growing up as a
Farmer's Daughter.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Six-Fruit Crisp

Since having found out I was diabetic, I try to eat significantly fewer sweets. You know, the good stuff - cookies, cake, candy,
pie . . .

The benefit of this, besides lower blood sugar, has been an appreciation for naturally sweet foods - such as fruit. I have discovered that I really love fruit.

Never before would I have thought that a piece of fruit could satisfy my craving for something sweet. Although there are still times when I physically need a Hershey Bar, I have found that fruit is sweet too!

Although this recipe is not low carb by any means - because of all of the fruit and the sweet crumbly topping - it is a yummy fruit dessert that even I can eat in small portions.

1 jar (25 oz.) chunky applesauce
1 can (20 oz.) pineapple tidbits, drained and rinsed (to help lower the sugar)
1 can (15 1/4 oz.) sliced peaches, drained, chopped and rinsed
1 can (15 1/4 oz.) sliced pears, drained, chopped and rinsed
1 can (11 oz.) mandarin oranges, drained and rinsed
1 can (21 oz.) low sugar cherry pie filling

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup margarine, melted

Pour applesauce into a greased 13 x 9 baking dish Layer with the pineapple, peaches, pears, and mandarin oranges. Spread pie filling over the top.

For topping, combine the flour, brown sugar and margarine. Sprinkle over pie filling. Bake at 375 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm with ice cream if desired.

Love Me

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Waldorf Sandwiches

I love Waldorf Salad and I love cinnamon-raisin bread.

This sandwich combines the two - sweet and yummy!

2 cups shredded unpeeled apple
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 celery ribs, finely chopped
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
14 to 16 slices cinnamon-raisin bread (lightly toasted)

In a bowl, toss apple with lemon juice. Stir in celery, walnuts and mayonnaise; mix well. Spread apple mixture on seven to eight bread slices, top with remaining bread.

Yield: 7-8 sandwiches

Love Me

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Dilly Egg Salad

Brian and I both love egg salad. In fact, this love goes way back . . .

Brian got his first "real" job the first summer we dated. It was the summer he turned 18 and I turned 14.

I used to be younger than him, but somehow I think I caught up.

Anyway, there was a little deli close to the small print shop where he worked. Both have since closed their doors. But during the summer of 1983, one provided Brian with a way to earn money and one provided Brian with a way to spend money.

That little deli had the best egg salad around. They would pile the egg salad so high on the sandwich that half of it would fall down your arm while you ate it. By the time you finished eating the sandwich, chips and dill pickle slice and washed it down with some Pepsi - all was well with the world.

Summer eating at it's best.

3 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1/4 cup small-curd cottage cheese
2 Tbsp. dill pickle relish
3 Tbsp. mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, combine the eggs, cottage cheese, relish, mayonnaise, mustard, salt and pepper. Spread 2/3 cup on two slices of bread. Top with lettuce if desired.

Makes 2 servings.

Love Me

Monday, May 24, 2010

5/24/10 Menu

Summer has decided to cut in line and pass by Spring . . .

So, bring out the cool and refreshing salad and fruit recipes!

Monday - hamburgers on the grill, baked beans, cottage cheese and chips
Tuesday - baked potato casserole, applesauce, creamed spinach
Wednesday - dilly egg salad sandwiches, celery with cream cheese, chips
Thursday - meatball subs, cole slaw, chips
Friday - Waldorf sandwiches (lunch), chicken fettuccine, California blend vegetables
Saturday - chicken salad sandwiches (lunch), sausage with scalloped potatoes, spinach casserole
Sunday - Picnic at the lake?

Recipes I will highlight this week: dilly egg salad, Waldorf sandwiches, six-fruit crisp

Love Me

Monday, May 17, 2010

5/17/10 Menu

I was doing so well at making menus and posting them. Taking pride in feeding my family nutritious meals.

I have no idea what went wrong. Maybe it was the busyness of last week.

But, alas, my cupboards are bare and my cookbooks are covered in dust.

Not a lot of creativity going on here this week.

Sorry, just keeping it real.

Love Me

Thursday, May 13, 2010

LaBella Lasagna

This is the lasagna we ended up eating on Tuesday night. Not the lasagna I had planned on feeding our missionary guests.

But considering on Tuesday Brian and I drove over 60 miles round trip before noon and I saw 5 complicated patients in the breast clinic - this is the lasagna we ate.

And if it hadn't been for Megan who shopped for the groceries and cooked the entire dinner - cheese cake and all - we would have ended up eating McDonalds.

I love my grown up girl!

Supper was great. Cooked to perfection and perfectly on time.

This was the lasagna we were supposed to enjoy - LaBella Lasagna recipe courtesy of my mom.

1 pound ground chuck
1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
1 Tbsp. basil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 No. 303 can tomatoes
2 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste
2 cups cottage cheese - or Ricotta cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1 pound mozzarella cheese
1/2 pkg. lasagna noodles, cooked, drained and rinsed in cold water (9 strips)

Cook meat until brown, drain off excess fat. Add parsley, salt, tomatoes, and tomato paste; simmer for 1/2 hour, stirring occasionally.

Combine cottage (or Ricotta) cheese and Parmesan cheese; add eggs, salt and pepper.

To assemble lasagna pour a thin layer of tomato sauce in bottom of 13 x 9 baking dish. Cover with a layer of lasagna (3 strips). Spread half the cheese mixture over lasagna; layer half the mozzarella over the cheese mixture. Spread a layer of tomato sauce over all.

Repeat layers; top with remaining lasagna and tomato sauce.

Cover with foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes; uncover and bake 20 minutes longer. Let sit 15 minutes before serving.

Love Me

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Yogurt Cream and Berries

I am not a huge yogurt fan, but I love this recipe. It is straight from the Pioneer Woman's website - so I give her all the credit. (You've got to check out this link - I am totally jealous of her jadite!)

Because I have been on a strawberry kick this last week, I am serving this over strawberries instead of blueberries like she does.

A light granola could even be added if you are so inclined.

1 1/2 cups plain, unflavored yogurt
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup brown sugar
blueberries or strawberries

Pour the yogurt into a bowl. Then add the cream. With a whisk carefully stir until combined. Sprinkle the brown sugar evenly over the top of the yogurt mixture.

Do not stir the mixture.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and tightly seal the edges. Refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours.

When ready to serve, you can either leave the mixture as is or stir with a whisk until smooth.

Serve over berries.

Love Me

Monday, May 10, 2010

5/10/10 Menu

I can't believe this is the second week of May! Good grief, time is flying!

Levi just finished his first semester of college! Megan gets married in eight short months! And Joel just got his license and has two weeks of his sophomore year left!


And this week is so chocked full that it is bound to fly by . . .

. . . the challenge, however, is going to be figuring out a way to fit meals into this busy week.

We have an amazing missionary couple coming to church Tuesday through Saturday providing training sessions on open air evangelism. (Check out this web site for more on Open Air Campaigners) The meetings start at 6:30 pm every night which will mean supper needs to be ready and on the table right at 5:30 pm or we don't stand a chance of getting there on time.

With work being as crazy as it has been, this could be a challenge.

It looks like I am going to be relying on the old crock pot again. Good thing the weather has taken a turn to the cooler and rainy side - so soups and the like should taste pretty good.

Monday - ham steaks, green beans, scalloped potatoes, pineapple upside down cake
Tuesday - lasagna, salad, bread (with the Burleys at church)
Wednesday - Venison BBQ, chips, angel food cake with strawberries
Thursday - chili with peanut butter sandwiches
Friday - BLTs, chips, cottage cheese
Saturday - strawberries with cream and breakfast casserole (breakfast)/eat out (lunch)
Sunday - Basket-well-filled Meal at church: take cole slaw, jello cake, scalloped potatoes

Recipes I will highlight this week: strawberries with cream and my mom's amazing lasagna

Love Me

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Strawberry Freezer Jam

I love strawberry freezer jam. I could eat it with a spoon right out of the jar. In fact, I am sure I have eaten it with a spoon right out of the jar!

I love to make it in the summer and put it in the freezer and tell everyone that we can't get one out until the first snow! That way the first snow is something to look forward to.

I am tricky that way.

The bad thing about strawberry jam is all the sugar. But you can use the Low Sugar Sure Jell which uses less sugar.

Low sugar Sure Jell uses less sugar - now that was a profound statement.

Anyway, it doesn't set up quite as firm, but it is still super tasty. This recipe, however, is the full sugar recipe.

2 cups prepared strawberries
4 cups sugar
2 box Sure Jell fruit pectin

Remove caps from strawberries. Crush fruit one layer at a time. Measure 2 cups into large bowl. Measure sugar; then thoroughly stir into fruit. Let stand 10 minutes.

Mix 3/4 cup water and Sure Jell in small saucepan. Bring to a full boil and boil 1 minute, stirring constantly.

At once stir into fruit. Continue stirring 3 minutes. A few sugar crystals will remain.

Immediately ladle into containers, leaving 1/2" space at top. With a damp cloth, wipe any spills from containers. Cover at once with lids. Let stand at room temperature 24 hours.

Store jam in freezer.

Wait for the first snow.

Love Me

Friday, May 7, 2010

Strawberries and Pie Crust . . . and a walk down memory lane

Growing up we always had a great strawberry patch. I have the best memories of picking strawberries and even better - eating strawberries as a kid!

And since I have a summer birthday, I often got angel food cake and strawberries for my birthday. Still one of my all-time favorites.

My kids love strawberries too. We had a great strawberry bed at our first house.

When he was little, Joel was notorious for going outside and picking his own strawberries and eating them right on the spot!

Joel probably about 1 1/2 years old caught eating a strawberry!

I love strawberries so much that my first kitchen was ALL decorated in strawberries - even down to a red stove and refrigerator. Have you ever seen anything so cool?

Red stove and refrigerator bought from
Brian's boss for $75 - I totally LOVED them!
Longaberger recipe basket with strawberries painted
on the top by Brian's mom - I still use it today.
And of course strawberry towels and hot pads.

Me (pregnant with Megan) making French toast.

(sorry for the crooked scan - lol)
Notice the strawberry basket ceramic canisters
above the window and matching strawberry wind chime
hanging in the other window.
These were a gift from my mom and dad on my 16th birthday.
They were made by a local Baptist preacher
who also had a small ceramic shop.

Now that it is understood that I love all things strawberry - on to the recipe at hand.

Probably my most favorite way to eat strawberries is with broken up homemade pie crust.

Simple. Sweet. Salty.

Pure summer goodness at its finest.

Pie Dough -

1 cup flour
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp. Crisco
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix ingredients well.

Gradually add 3 Tbsp. ICE water.
Mix well and form into ball.
Roll out flat on floured surface and place on cookie sheet. With a fork, poke holes in dough.
Bake at 350 degrees until lightly browned.
Allow crust to cool. Break into pieces.

Serve with room temperature sliced and lightly sugared fresh strawberries.

If you are craving strawberries and pie crust but don't have time to bake your own crust, try crumbling up Ritz crackers over room temperature sliced and lightly sugared fresh strawberries. Equally as yummy.

Love Me

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Fresh Strawberry Pound Cake a/k/a Best Strawbery Cake EVER

I love strawberries! Oh, do I love strawberries!

And I heard it was going to be a bumper-crop year for strawberries! Yay! for me!

This cake, in my opinion, is the best strawberry cake you will ever eat. Made with fresh strawberries and strawberry jello for added flavor - it is moist and super delicious.

I rarely make the glaze and I don't always bake the cake in a Bundt pan - sometimes I bake it in two loaf pans and serve it more like you would a banana bread.

Since the strawberries are crushed, it is a perfect recipe to use up those not-so-perfect strawberries. If there is such a thing.

1 box white cake mix
1 cup crushed fresh strawberries
1 (3 oz.) strawberry jello
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, room temperature

1/4 cup margarine
3 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup mashed strawberries

Combine cake ingredients together in large mixing bowl; mix for 3 minutes. Pour in sprayed Bundt pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 45-55 minutes or until cake tests done. Cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes; remove to serving plate. Combine glaze ingredients until smooth and spread over cake. (May be frozen with or without glaze.)

Love Me

Monday, May 3, 2010

5/3/10 Menu

If the meals on Monday and Tuesday look familiar, it is because they are! This last week my menu ended up being altered from Thursday on - so, I am rehashing a few days of last week's menu.

Just keeping it real.

Monday - crock-roasted chicken with rotisserie rub, potatoes, cheddar and pea tossed salad
Tuesday - steak burritos, chips and salsa (from Chili's), banana salad
Wednesday - chicken nuggets, baked beans, and cottage cheese before church
Thursday - meatball subs, chips, zesty Italian salad
Friday - pizza, best strawberry cake EVER!
Saturday - Mother's Day pitch-in at my parents!
Sunday - Mother's Day - which means we will probably eat out!!

Recipes I will highlight this week: strawberry preserves, best strawberry cake EVER, strawberries and pie dough - seeing a theme here?

Love Me