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.

Monday, January 31, 2011

1/31/11 Menu

Megan looking stylish while keeping house.

Proof that Levi knows how to wash dishes but just chooses not to wash dishes.

The other day someone asked me what it was like living with all boys now.

It is different . . . definitely different.

Here are some differences bullet style:

  • I never walk in the house and find that the dishes have been done.
  • I am the only one who feeds the cats.
  • We watch ESPN . . . a lot.
  • We eat more meat.
  • I have not found a bobby pin on the floor or in the laundry for weeks.
  • Unless I want to smell like a man, I have no one's body wash to borrow when mine runs out.
  • I haven't shaved my legs with a girl razor in weeks.
  • Did I mention we watch ESPN . . . a lot.
  • Scooby now has his own place at the table.
Monday - Frozen pizza
Tuesday - Swiss steak, egg noodles, peas
Wednesday - spaghetti and garlic bread
Thursday - Ham, au gratin potatoes, green beans
Friday - Manwich, twice baked sweet potatoes
Saturday - Turkey ManHattan, peas

Recipes I will highlight this week: Swiss Steak, twice baked sweet potatoes, and raspberry jelly roll.

Love Me

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Homemade Angel Food Cake

Not a lot of cooking has been going on in our neck of the woods. Joel and I have been down with influenza for the last week.

Not pretty. Not pretty at all.

But today the snow is starting to melt and the sun has returned, and maybe renewed respiratory function with it.

In an attempt to feel better, I am making cakes today. Not one . . . but two cakes.

Cherry Cake Pudding - courtesy of the Pioneer Woman (who I like to pretend is my personal friend) and Angel Food Cake - courtesy of my mother (who I like to think is my real friend).

Let the baking begin.

Angel Food Cake

1 1/2 cups egg whites (with NO egg yolk traces)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 cup sifted sugar
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup sifted cake flour
1 tsp. vanilla

Put empty cake pan in 450 degree oven to heat.

Beat egg whites with salt and cream of tartar until stiff but not dry. Fold in granular sugar 2 Tbsp. at a time with wire whisk folding in slowly trying to keep the air in the egg whites.

Sift powdered sugar and cake flour together 5 times. Fold into egg white mixture 2 Tbsp. at a time raising spoon with high up-sweep motion.

Add vanilla. Remove pan from oven and pour in batter.

Bake at 450 degrees exactly 23 minutes. Invert on stand or cups until cool.

Love Me

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Sour Dough Bread Starter and Bread Recipe

They say the smell of fresh baked bread is a real male stimulant.

Why bother with hair and make-up and forget losing weight - just bake bread!

Starter recipe -

1 pkg. dry yeast
1 cup warm water
3/4 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. instant potato flakes


I am not sure what will happen but I think it is akin to the Apocalypse. Just don't do it.

Combine all ingredients well. Let sit 5 hours until it ferments. Refrigerate for 3-5 days.

Much like husbands and children, starter needs to be fed every 3-7 days. To feed, take out of refrigerator and add the following ingredients:

3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. instant potato flakes
1 cup warm water

Stir with wooden spoon. Let stand at room temperature for 8-10 hours. Remove 1 cup to make bread. Return remaining starter to refrigerator.

NOTE: You do not need to make bread each time you feed the starter, but you must remove 1 cup (either give away or discard).

Bread Recipe

6 cups bread flour (must be bread flour)
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sour dough starter
1 1/2 cup warm water

In a large bowl, mix above ingredients into a stiff batter with a wooden spoon. Knead in additional flour until dough is no longer sticky.

Grease a second bowl, place well kneaded dough in bowl. Turn dough over leaving greased side up. Let stand at room temperature for 8-10 hours. Knead again. Place in 3 greased loaf pans. Let rise 8-10 hours.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Brush with melted margarine.

Then promptly write a letter to Wonder Bread thanking them for all of the hard work they do every day.

Love Me

Friday, January 14, 2011

Blonde Brownies

Brownies and I go way back. Actually, I consider brownies to be one of my closest friends.

Sad but true.

These brownies are one of my absolute favorites. My mom can make them perfect every time - while my success with them is hit or miss.

The key is not over baking them. If you do, they are transformed from oohey-gooey brown sugar goodness into bricks.

Bricks that are impossible to get out of the pan. Bricks that you will try to eat because you are so desperate for a brownie. Bricks that you will curse as you are on the way to the dentist with a broken tooth.

So proceed with caution and heed the warning not to over bake!

1/4 cup margarine
1 cup light brown sugar (packed)
1 egg
3/4 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (finely chopped)
1/2 to 3/4 cup chocolate chips

Melt margarine over low heat. Remove from heat. Blend in sugar. Cool. Stir in egg.

Blend flour, baking powder and salt: stir into cooled mixture. Mix in vanilla and walnuts. Add chocolate chips.

Spread in well greased 8 x 8 square pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 min. DO NOT OVER BAKE. Cut into bars while warm.

* NOTE: These brownies will not look done - but remove from oven anyway. Unless you never want to use your 8 x 8 pan again!

Love Me

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow Ice Cream

Well the forecasters predicted this one correctly and we have snow. Joel is home from school and not too happy that I told him today would be a good day to clean his room.

Maybe some snow ice cream will help.

Quick and Easy Version:

1 cup milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
Clean snow

In a large bowl mix milk, vanilla, and sugar together until sugar is dissolved. Slowly add snow until desired consistency.

Serve immediately. Does not keep well.

Slower But More Creamy version:

1 beaten egg
1 cup millk
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
clean snow

In a saucepan mix the beaten egg, milk, sugar and vanilla vigorously with a wire whisk while heating until hot and frothy. Remove from heat. Allow pan to cool and then refrigerate until well chilled. This process will take 45-50 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl gather approximately 8 cups of clean snow. Pour cooled milk mixture over the snow mixing well and adding more snow until desired consistency is achieved.

Serve immediately.

Paula Deen version:

8 cups of clean snow
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp. vanilla

In a large bowl place 8 cups of clean snow. Pour sweetened condensed milk over the top and add vanilla. Stir well to combine. Serve immediately.

Love Me

Monday, January 10, 2011

1/10/11 Menu

Weather forecasters are predicting a winter storm for our area tomorrow which means Walmart was packed today with people grocery shopping. You know, stocking up on the staples . . .

. . . bread and milk. Because heaven forbid you get snowed in without any bread and milk.

I can think of a lot worse things to be snowed in without - toilet paper for one. Although I have never seen Charmin being hauled out of Walmart in mass quantities during the threat of snow. Oddly enough I did hear that strawberry jello sells out in some areas when snow is predicted.

I don't quite understand that one.

For me, however, being snowed in without some form of chocolate would induce a severe case of cabin fever within hours. So today, I skipped the bread and went straight for the brownie mix.

Although I am fairly confident that the weathermen are once again overreacting, I am now stocked with milk and brownie mix.

Let it snow!

Monday - chili with Fritos, left-over cheese cake bites
Tuesday - spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, spinach salad with oil and vinegar dressing
Wednesday - California baked beans, cottage cheese
Thursday - chicken fettucini with vegetables, crescent rolls
Friday - eat out on the way to Joel's basketball game
Saturday - baked chicken, green bean casserole, Au gratin potatoes

Recipes I will highlight this week: snow ice cream, blonde brownies, sour dough bread starter.

Love Me

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Levi's gift

After 23 years of marriage, my pots and pans have had it. But thanks to Levi and his unexpected gift of these Better Homes and Gardens beauties, I am set for another 20+ years!

Wedded Bliss!!!

Megan and Adam
January 7, 2011

Now that Megan and Adam have entered into wedded bliss it is time for me to start planning menus, getting groceries and actually cooking again!

After all, Megan needs me now more than ever! Hopefully she will come here to Farmer's Daughter and get help with supper ideas and recipes . . .

The boys need me too . . . they have started to waste away these last three months! Don't worry boys Mom is back!

Now if I can just find the stove.

Maybe the first step in my return to normal life will be a good house cleaning!