Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sausage, Corn, and Tomato Soup

I made two different soups for this weekend when the family comes.  Actually, I was the sue chef and Jud made this soup. We doubled this recipe.
3/4 pound bulk pork sausage
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 stalk celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (14.5 ounces) whole or diced tomatoes with juice
2 1/2 cups chicken stock or broth
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Crushed tortilla chips for topping
In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, brown sausage for about 5 min, breaking it up with a spoon as it cooks. Add onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic, and saute' until vegetables are tender, about 5 min. Add tomatoes, stock, corn, salt, and pepper.

Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until flavors are blended, about 20 min. Simmer, uncovered, 10 min. longer or until ready to serve. Ladle into bowls and top with crushed tortilla chips.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Autumn Spice Cake

Jud's favorite cake for his birthday has always been spice cake. I have tried many recipes and usually end up just using the box spice cake with cream cheese icing. This recipe came out in the San Antonio express news two days before his birthday so I decided to use it this year. I think we have a keeper.  This recipe was from Country Living Magazine via The Express News in San Antonio.
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 cup shortening
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 Tablespoon unsweet cocoa
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Prehead oven to 350 degrees. Line three 8" cake pans with parchment paper and butter lightly.
Beat butter, shortening, and sugars together until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until smooth and light. Stir in buttermilk and vanilla. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and spices together in a large bowl. Altenately stir the flour mixture and buttermilk, in thirds, into the beaten batter. Blend well with each addition. Pour batter into the pans and bake until center tests clean, about 30-35 min. Cook cakes in the pans on a rack for 30 min. unmold, and cool completely before frosting.

1 stick butter, softened
1 (8oz) block of cream cheese, softened.
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 box powdered sugar
Mix butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add vanilla and then powdered sugar a little at a time. Beat until smooth.  Ice cooled cakes between each layer and all over top and sides.

Butternut Squash Soup

1 head of garlic
3 cups chopped onions
3/4 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
4 pounds butternut squash
6 cups chicken stock
3 Tablespoons fresh sage
butter and or olive oil to saute' vegetables
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut the whole garlic in 1/2 and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap the garlic in foil and roast in the oven fr 40 min.
Cut up butternut squash in cubes and boil until fork tender
Melt better and or olive oil in pot and add onions, carrots, and celery. Saute' 5 min. Add cooked squash, broth, and sage. Squeeze garlic out of skin and mash with fork. Puree soup mixture until smooth. Stir in 1 cup of whipping cream and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Baked Oatmeal

I made this to have at Ruidoso when my hiking group came. It was nice because we could eat on it all week and just pour milk over the oatmeal in a bowl and warm it in the microwave.
2 eggs
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup oil
Mix these together and add:
3 cups Oatmeal ( I used old fashioned)
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons baking powder
a pinch of salt and 1 teaspoon of vanilla
There was no baking powder at the cabin so I substituted 1 cup of sour cream and 1 teaspoon baking soda.
Stir ingredients well. Bake 350 degrees for 30 min. Add warm milk and enjoy!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Jud's pork tenderloin

Jud is the griller in our family. He is so good at it that I never tried to learn.  My mom told me when I got married to never learn to do something that your husband does well, or it will become your job.  I have taken that lesson to heart.

1 pork tenderloin (plain)
1/2 bottle Italian dressing
Marinade the pork in the Italian dressing for at least 2 hours.  Jud pours the marinade over at lunch and takes it out when he is ready to grill.
Prepare the grill and let the coals get hot.  Place the pork tenderloin (throw the marinade away) on the grill and grill for about 20-25 min.  Turn often.  Jud and I have a running argument about cutting the pork in 1/2. I say it lets all the juices run out, but he is the boss of the grill so he cuts it in 1/2 after about 20 min. to check to see if it is done. It is always delecious, so he must be right.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Yeast Rolls

My mom used to make these for every Sunday School party that she attended. She would make up 5 pounds of flour into rolls and put them in a cooler to keep warm for the party. She often complained that no one wanted her to bring anything else, but I think she secretly loved it and couldn't figure out why other people didn't make homemade bread. I think of my mom with fond memories whenever I cook. She definately gave me the gift of loving to cook and eat food.
I mix 1 package of yeast and 3 Tablespoons of warm water in a blender. Let sit until dissolved
2  eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
Blend ingredients and then add 1 cup of hot water. Blend
To a large bowl add 4 1/2 cups of flour and liquid mixture. Knead at least 5 minutes on a floured surface. Place in a clean bowl that has been oiled and allow to rise double. Punch down and let rise again. Make into rolls and let rise to double. Bake at 350 degrees 15-20 minutes.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pork Chops with Fennel and Caper Sauce

1/4 cup olive oil
4 boneless pork chops
3/4 teaspoon salt and pepper, plus more for seasoning meat
2 fennel blubs with fronds, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leav parsley, plus 1/3 cup
1/2 cup white wine
1 (28 oz. can diced tomatoes, with their juices
1/2 lemon, zested
2 Tablespoons capers
In a heavy skillet heat the olive oil over high heat. Season the pork chops with salt and pepper. Add the pork to the pan and brown on both sides, about 4 min. per side. Remove the pork from the pan, cover loosely with foil, and set aside3.
Add the fennel, shallots, and 1/3 cup parsley to the pan and cook over medium heat until beginning to brown, about 5 min. Add the wine. Using a wooden spoon, scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Add the tomatoes and stir. Add the pork back into the pan, nesting the chops bvetween the fennel and tomatoes so they are mostly submerged in the pan juices. Cook until the fennel is tender and the pork is done, about 12 - 15 min. 
Place the pork on a serving dish. To finish the sauce, add the lemon zest, remaining 1/3 cup parsley, capers, and 3/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Spoon over the pork chops and serve immediately.  I am planning to stir some cooked pasta into the sauce.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Amish White Bread

I got this recipe from my Aunt Sherry from

2 cups warm water
2/3 cup white sugar
1 Tablespoon + 1 1/2 teaspoons of active dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil (I use canola)
6 cups of bread flour
In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water; add yeast. Allow to proof until yeast resembles a creamy foam. Mix salt and oil into the yeast. Work in 5-6 cups of flour. Knead dough on a lightly floured level surface until smooth. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn dough to coat the entire surface. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until double in bulk, about 1 hour. Punch dough down. Knead for a few minutes, and divide in 1/2 . Shape into loaves, and place into two well-oiled loaf pans. Allow to rise for 30 min., or until dough has risen to one inch above pans. Bake 350 degrees for 30 min.

Orange Muffins

We are leaving for Ruidoso, N.M. tomorrow morning so I am making these to take for our breakfast.  If they muffins are 1/2 as good as the batter, it will be delecious.
1 orange peel grated
3/4 cup pecans (chopped fine)
1 stick butter (room temperature)
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/3  cup orange juice
Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add grated orange zest. Then add eggs and baking soda.
Add 1/2 of the flour and buttermilk. Mix well. Add other 1/2 . Fold in pecans. Bake 375 degrees for 20-25 min. Cool and brush the tops of muffins with fresh orange juice.