Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Fear: Rhubarb Custard Pie

I DID IT!!


Do you see what is in those two pictures up there?

Yup, it's rhubarb custard pie.

I have not attempted to make a rhubarb pie since I was in my mid 20's; I am now 43.

Yes, my experience in my mid 20's has scared me for that long. Just thinking about it makes me shake....


There is a rhubarb patch that grows at the back of my property line. And it is right on the line. I feel that the patch of rhubarb could belong to either me or my neighbor, but to keep things right, I only use what's on my side.

Wouldn't you do the same thing?

I thought so....

I gathered enough rhubarb (on my side) to make a rhubarb custard pie.

I am looking fear straight in the face while I am preparing this pie, and shaking the whole time.

I even made my own pie crust.

I'm not happy with the recipe (it's not sweet enough) and will be looking for another one, but I am just glad to be boxing out my fear.

I did find out that rhubarb cooks down....

I will have to make adjustments to the filling when I make this again.

Did you notice how I said again? I am not afraid anymore.

Now, to tell you why I fear rhubarb custard pie....

When I was in my mid 20's, I wanted to surprise my boyfriend, at the time, with rhubarb custard pie, and I wanted to show him that he really picked a winner when it comes to kitchens and foods (you know how the dating scene is, you have to impress, right?)

I put together my pies, placed them in the oven, set the timer, and went to relax in front of the TV.
The next thing I knew the whole entire house was filled with black smoke. Yes, the pies ran over in the oven.
I didn't know what to do, so I shut off the oven, pulled the partially baked pies out of the oven, while the black smoke kept getting thicker....
I ran to the front door, opened it, ran to the back door, opened it, and all the while fighting the urge to call the fire department.
I WAS SCARED THAT BAD.

Now 20 years later, I have decided to face that fear and knock it out for good (I placed a cookie sheet under the pie...).

I am one to give words of wisdom when it comes to fear.

"If you let fear win, you will struggle to achieve."
"Fear will be strong if you allow it to be."
And the famous "NO FEAR"

But do I take my own advice? Sure I do. 20 years later....

Rhubarb Custard Pie

1 (9 inch) pie shell
2 c. chopped rhubarb
1 c. white sugar
2 TBS all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 eggs, beaten
4 tsp. milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread rhubarb evenly across unbaked pasty shell.
In a medium bowl combine sugar, flour, and nutmeg. Mix well, then add eggs and milk. Beat until smooth and pour over rhubarb.
Cover edges of pie shell with aluminum foil to prevent over-browning (I didn't use foil and didn't have any problems with the crust getting too brown).
Bake in oven for 55 minutes.

"No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them."
Joshua 1:5-6

Every new situation can be a challenge. Without God it can be frightening. With God it can be a great adventure. He is with us as we face our new challenges. We may not conquer nations, but every day we face tough situations, fears, difficult people, and temptations. God promises that He will never abandon us or fail to help us. By asking God to direct us we can conquer many of life's challenges. Just don't wait 20 years to ask for help.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Stomp Out The Left-overs! Corn

What do you do when you have left-over sweet corn?

Do you throw it away?

Do you reheat it and eat it the next day?

Do you turn it into compost?

Do you feed it to your livestock?

With all the Memorial Day picnics and cookouts, I'm sure you will have left-over sweet corn.

Happy Memorial Day!! Make sure you thank a Vet today....

I'm going to show you what I do with left-over sweet corn.....

I cut it off the cob (4 ears), grab a big skillet, heat it up with about 3 - 4 TBS butter, dump in the cut off the cob corn, and fry it with salt and lots of pepper.

I try real hard not to break up the whole strips that came off the cob. Those are the best....

I fry it until it just turns a little brown.

Then I serve it with the meal I'm making.

The meal consisted of smoked sausage, German potato salad, and fried sweet corn.

"So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him."
Luke 15:20

God's love is constant and patient and welcoming. He will search for us and give us opportunities to respond, but He will not force us to come to Him. Like the father in the verse, God waits patiently for us to come to our senses.

Friday, May 27, 2011

A Dear Friend: Stuffed Hamburgers

I would like to take the time to tell you about this wonderful lady.

I apologize for the tiny picture, I guess I'm just not a computer nerd....I am still learning.

This is Joelle. And you should really take some time to check out her blog and recipes.

Joelle and I met virtually through Just A Pinch recipe club.

I am so glad I have been given the opportunity to get to know her.

She is such an inspiration, and I like to call her "the spice lady".

One thing that I fear is spice, but Joelle is a master.

Joelle made stuffed hamburgers and posted the idea to her blog.

"I have got to try this..."

I mixed my hamburger meat into a meatloaf mix.

The way Joelle explained her technique was, make thin patties, place cheese and onion on top of one thin patty, and then place another thin patty on top of the cheese and onion.

I stuffed some with American cheese singles and some with garlic seasoned feta.


Pinch the edges together to seal in the cheese and onion.

I had to show you how thick these turned out.
You can pan fry these or bake them in the oven.
I don't have a recipe for this, but the inspiration is there.
These hamburgers will definitely be made again in my house.

Thank you for inspiring me Joelle.

"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."2 Timothy 3:16

Through the Holy Spirit, God revealed His person and plan to certain believers, who wrote down His message for His people (the Bible). This process is known as inspiration. The writers wrote from their own personal and cultural contexts. They used their own minds, talents, language, and style. They wrote what the Holy Spirit wanted them to write. The Bible is "God-breathed", read it, and use its teachings and inspiration to guide you through your faith and life.


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Do I Have Bragging Rights? Grocery Store Find

Being a blogger, do I have bragging rights?

I love to share my wonderful finds, ideas, and suggestions.

Nobody likes a braggart, but if I can help someone out with my simple finds I will share them.

I found this bread at my local Meijer store on the same day expired bakery rack. I love that rack, and I hope they never do away with it.

I purchase breads like this and stick them in my freezer.

They are perfect for when I need something in a pinch.

And if you noticed....I only paid $1.01 for that bread.

I thawed it and baked it according to package directions.

It was really nice to have on hand when I made my White Chicken Chili. The bread was excellent for dunking.

The chili flavors along with the bread flavor (Asiago Cheese) were perfect together.

"Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brother, they hated him all the more. He said to them, "Listen to this dream I had: We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.""
"Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers, "Listen", he said, "I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.""
Genesis 37:5-6, 37:9

There is a big difference between a helpful brag and a boastful brag. Joseph irritated his brothers with his immature attitude and self-aggrandizing manner. No one enjoys a braggart. Joseph learned an important lesson about bragging, and so can we: Because our talents and knowledge come from God, it is more appropriate to thank Him for our talents instead of bragging about them. We need to give God all the credit.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Does It Really Taste Like Chili? White Chicken Chili

I have been wanting to make this for years, but my assumptions took over for me....

Chicken Chili?

And white?

Chili has to have tomatoes, right?

Well, I finally gave in and went to my kitchen to create a chicken chili.

Am I glad I did?

Sure enough....

This recipe is linked to Eat At Home, Ingredient Spotlight.

I cooked 4 chicken breast halves in simmering water for about 35 minutes.

Chopped the chicken in chunks (say that 10 times fast...), and gathered other ingredients from the kitchen that I thought would be good in this soup.

And why am I so stuck on soup at the end of May?

I have no explanation for that. Sorry.

But soup is one food that is so versatile. You get your meats and veggies all in one dish.

And it's very satisfying.

I chopped up two zucchini, one green and one yellow along with onion and garlic.

Is there any food better than beans?

I am a bean lover, and the more the better.

Just so you know, my favorite bean is the black bean.

A little bit of information about me....

I used the broth that I cooked the chicken in for my soup base.

That doesn't look very white to me....

But was my first attempt at making chicken chili a success?

It sure was.

This is definitely going on my favorite soup list.

I need to steer clear of my assumptions.

Just look at what I was missing out on.

White Chicken Chili

1 medium onion
2 small zucchini (one green and one yellow), chopped (with skins on)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 TBS olive oil
7 c. water seasoned with chicken soup base (according to directions on container). I used the water I cooked the chicken in. Take out 1 cup of broth and set aside.
2 (15.5 oz.) cans great northern beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15.5 oz.) can butter beans, rinsed and drained
2 TBS minced fresh parsley
1 TBS lemon juice
2 TBS cornstarch
1 c. reserved chicken broth
4 chicken breast halves, cooked and chopped

In a large saucepan, cook onion, garlic, and zucchini in oil until tender (till onion is translucent) about 5 minutes. Stir in broth, beans, parsley, lemon juice, and chili seasoning, bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Combine cornstarch and water until smooth; stir into chili. Add chicken. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

"Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth."
2 Timothy 2:15

Yup, I am kind of ashamed of myself for ignoring this great dish. My assumptions took over me and did not give me a chance to see the truth. To know the truth.
Because God will examine what kind of workers we have been for him, we should build our lives on His Word and build His Word into our lives. His Word alone tells us how to live for Him and serve Him. Worshipers who ignore the Bible will certainly be ashamed of their actions and thoughts. Diligent Bible study is vital, otherwise we will be making assumptions on God and our true purpose for living.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Kiss On The Lips: Chocolate Ketchup

Hershey, Pennsylvania....Have you ever been there?

Hershey is one place that's on my bucket list. I even have a friend that lives near there, right Myron?

He asked me one day, "So, you've never seen the Hershey Kiss lights?"

And I don't live that far away. Ohio and Pennsylvania are neighbors.....

According to research, chocolate ketchup is served in most restaurants in Hershey.

Well of course, chocolate was born there, and ketchup close by in Pittsburgh.

So naturally they should come together. Right?

The Chocolate Atlas did an interview on the Chef at Hershey Lodge, Bill Justus. He even supplies some of his recipes.

This recipe is linked to Mandy's Recipe Box. Make sure you take a look at all her wonderful recipes and ideas.

If this was magically delicious on fries, can you imagine what it would be like on ribs?

Or wings?

Or pork chops?

Or a dipping sauce for chicken strips?

I have a package of ribs in my freezer that is going to be introduced to this magical sauce....

All you have to do is measure equal parts of Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Syrup and your favorite ketchup.
You have to use Special Dark syrup though. It won't taste the same with milk chocolate.

This recipe is linked to:
Vegetarian Mamma ~ Gluten Free Fridays

"An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips."
Proverbs 24:26

Dark chocolate and ketchup, a true friendship, just like a kiss on the lips. A kiss on the lips was a sign of true friendship. Some people think that they should bend the truth to avoid hurting a friend. But one who gives an honest answer is a true friend. To be trusted with the truth even at the risk of offense is what this proverb is saying. Proverbs 24:26 represents a gesture of high honor.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Did Someone Say Genius? Home-made Chili Seasoning

For years I have been wanting to make (yes, I said for years) white chicken chili.

It has been raining for days, and temperatures just won't rise above 55.

Are.... you.... serious....? Almost the end of May and the temp is 55....

I headed to my kitchen with the attempt to make white chicken chili....

I found out quickly that I didn't have any chili seasoning packets.

As I stood in the middle of my kitchen and did a slow-motion ballerina twirl, while covering my eyes with my hands (are you picturing this?), it dawned on me that I have a whole spice rack full of spices.

I am going to try to make my own.

Did the attempt pan-out? It sure did....


This is what I did:

Chili Seasoning Mix

1 TBS paprika
2 1/2 tsp. seasoning salt
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp. white pepper
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. ground thyme
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. poultry seasoning

Mix them all together and you get chili seasoning mix. Goodbye BROOKS, CHILI-O, or any others that you use.

"Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance."
Proverbs 1:5

This chili seasoning has a lot in common with the book of Proverbs. The book of Proverbs deals with everyday life. Proverbs gives practical suggestions for effective living. The book is not just a collection of homey sayings; it contains deep spiritual insights drawn from experience. A proverb is a short, wise, easy-to-learn saying that calls a person to action. Just like this chili seasoning did (you can make your own). Maybe I should call it proverb chili seasoning....
The book of Proverbs doesn't argue about basic spiritual and moral beliefs; it assumes we already hold them. The main focus is God, His character, works, and blessings, and it tells how we can live in close relationship to Him.

Friday, May 20, 2011

I Finally Did It: Lemon Cupcakes filled with Cream Cheese and Pie Filling

I finally did it!! It has taken me two weeks to make these cupcakes. The recipe has been laying in my kitchen waiting for my undivided attention.

And this recipe is linked to Sweets for a Saturday. There are a lot of great recipes over there. Make sure you stop by.

Every time I tried to make these cupcakes, I would get distracted by this mutt....

He looks so comfy, snoozing all day, not a care in the world (except for his food and treats), I just want to curl up beside him and be comfy too.

The dog wins every time. But not today!! I forced myself to ignore him.

I found the recipe for lemon cupcakes at Annie's Eats. I added the rest.

I added cream cheese and blueberry pie filling to the center.

After the cupcakes cooled, I frosted one with butter cream frosting. I found out quickly that it did not match the light lemony flavor of the cake. I then topped one with whipped cream.

The whipped cream is a perfect match.

I ate part of one (What? Did you actually think I could go without eating one, two, four, ten?) so you can see the inside.

Blueberries and lemon.....not one thing better!

Lemon Cupcakes filled with Cream Cheese and Blueberry Pie Filling

For the cupcakes

3/4 c. plus 2 TBS, all-purpose flour
3/4 c. cake flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
8 TBS unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 c. plus 2 TBS sugar
zest of 1 lemon
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 TBS lemon juice (juice of one lemon)
1/2 c. plus 3 TBS milk, at room temperature

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, and salt; whisk together and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter, sugar and lemon zest. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and lemon juice. With the mixer on low speed, mix in half of the dry ingredients just until incorporated. Blend in the milk. Mix in the rest of the dry ingredients, beating just until incorporated.
Pour cake batter into a serving bowl and wash the mixing bowl.

For the cream cheese and pie filling:

1 (8 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 egg
2 TBS sugar
splash of vanilla extract
Blueberry pie filling

Place cream cheese, egg, sugar, and splash of vanilla in the mixing bowl and mix until well blended.

Place a small amount of cake batter into each cupcake liner. Add a small amount of cream cheese mixture, and a small amount of blueberry pie filling. Fill the rest of the way with more cake batter (I filled mine almost to the top of the paper liners).
Bake for 23-27 minutes. Let the cakes cool in pan for about five minutes before removing them to a wire rack.
When the cakes are completely cool, top with whipped cream, or topping of your choice.

"But require them to make the same number of bricks as before; don't reduce the quota. They are lazy; that is why they are crying out, "Let us go and sacrifice to our God." Make the work harder for the men so that they keep working and pay no attention to lies."
Exodus 5:8-9

The unhappy result is more work, harder work, and more weight. When we spend a lot of time complaining, making excuses, and putting off till tomorrow, we feel like our work load is too impossible to accomplish. Sometimes hardship (discipline) comes from obeying God. We sometimes need to force ourselves to get jobs done. Are you following God but still suffering - or suffering even worse than before? If your life is miserable, or you feel like you have too much on your plate, don't assume you have fallen out of God's favor. You may be suffering for doing good in an evil world. Sometimes we push ourselves to get things done, and then sometimes we use "I always have tomorrow". But it would probably be in our best interest to do what we can today. Use our time wisely, and not let our burdens build up, causing ourselves a miserable feeling.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

On My Nose: Savory Garlic Cooking Creme On Sweet Corn

Hey, here's that savory garlic cooking creme again.

Yes, I am still trying to find ways to use this cooking creme.

Just look what I did....

It is bar-b-que time, right?

Isn't corn on the cob a bar-b-que food?

I smeared savory garlic cooking creme on my sweet corn.

Added salt and pepper....

Was it good? It was great!

Just make sure you have a napkin close by because you will get the cooking creme on your nose, your chin, and fingers.

Philadelphia savory garlic cooking creme will be put on the table every time we eat sweet corn.

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers."
Galatians 6:9-10

It is sometimes discouraging to continue to do right and receive no word of thanks or see no touchable results. But continue challenging your ways of doing right, keep moving forward by showing goodness toward your friends and family. God challenges us to keep on doing good and to trust in Him for results. In due time, we will reap a huge harvest of blessing. Do not let the rain get in your way, it is only wet for a little while. Life is a continuous challenge, don't be afraid to take them on, make the challenges work in your favor. Trust in God....

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Top-Notch Experiment: Creamy Garlic Potato Soup

Does't that look delicious?

I am very pleased with the way this turned out.

Another top-notch experiment.

Last week I posted a recipe using the Sana Fe flavor Philadelphia cooking creme. I also had savory garlic waiting in my frig.

This recipe is linked to Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker. There is some great stuff over there, make sure you check it out.

I had to come up with an idea to use this cooking creme flavor.

I know it is nearly summer and I shouldn't be thinking about soups. I should be focusing on grilling, summer time salads, rhubarb (coming soon), and keeping things cool.

But, if you make this soup, you will not be disappointed. Full of flavor, creamy, and everything a soup should be.

I used an all-beef smoked sausage in this soup because some of this is going to my grandmother and she is allergic to pork.

I know she will love this soup, and I will take it in little containers for her to keep in her freezer.

This recipe is linked to Mandy's Recipe Box.

Since this is my own recipe, I'm going to supply my ingredients and steps as I created it.

Creamy Garlic Potato Soup

1 pkg. all-beef smoked sausage (Hillshire Farm), sliced and diced
1 c. chopped onion
1 tsp. celery salt
ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground thyme

Add spices to sausage and onion. Saute until onion is transparent, set aside.

8 small/medium potatoes, peeled and diced
2 (26 oz.) Swanson chicken broth

Boil potatoes in chicken broth until tender. About 10 minutes. Add sausage mix to potatoes (I used a slotted spoon).

2 c. milk
1 Philadelphia savory garlic cooking creme

Whisk together. Slowly add milk mixture to simmering potatoes and sausage while stirring.

1 c. shredded pepper-jack cheese
3 TBS butter

Bring to a simmer and add cheese and butter. Stir until melted.

Serve in bowls topped with seasoned croutons and fresh chives.

"Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God - Children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God.
John 1:12-13

Through faith in Christ, this new birth changes us from the inside out - rearranging our attitudes, desires, and motives. Have you asked Christ to make you a new person? Being a new person will allow a fresh start, motivate you to continue forward, and allow you to not hold fear.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Hot, Hot, Hot: Five Chip Cookies

I was so impressed with these cookies, and I had to share all of my pictures.

I fetched this recipe from Tina, at Mommy's Kitchen, and since Blogger was down for 48 hours, I used my time wisely and baked.

I really wish these could have made it to Caden's bake sale that The Better Baker was providing.

Sometimes I wish I could arrange the days of the week to suit ME. I would like today to be Thursday. I would like tomorrow to be Monday. And three days from now I would like it to be Sunday.

Wouldn't that be great?

We would be able to get everything done on time, every time....

I didn't have five different chips on hand, but I had four. I thought that would be close enough to make these delicious cookies.

I had monster cookie mix chips, peanut butter, milk chocolate, and white.

This recipe is linked to:
Mandy's Recipe Box.
Foodie Friends Friday
The Weekend Potluck ~ The Better Baker

The message boards on Facebook concerning these cookies were hot, hot, hot....Everyone was getting in on the conversation. I am so glad I chose this recipe to use during my down-time.

And if you get bored with my pictures, you can just skip to the recipe.

The pictures turned out great and I had to share them all.

This recipe is also linked here: This Chick Cooks



I did make a slight change to this recipe. I cut back on the amount of peanut butter. This cookie is truly amazing, and has been added to my favorites.

Five (Four) Chip Cookies

1 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. peanut butter
1 c. sugar
2/3 c. packed light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. old-fashioned oats
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 c. each milk chocolate chips, semisweet chocolate, peanut butter, white chocolate, and butterscotch.

In a large bowl, cream the butter, peanut butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, oats, baking soda and salt; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Stir in chips.

Drop by rounded TBS (large) 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking stones. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 14 - 17 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool for a few minutes before removing to wire racks. Yield: 4 doz.

"When Apollos wanted to go to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples there to welcome him. On arriving, he was a great help to those who by grace had believed. For he vigorously refuted the Jews in public debate, proving from the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ."
Acts 18:27-28

What a great gift Tina has shared. As it often happens, qualities sometimes cause conception because of jealousy, pride, or other problems. Be glad for Tina's gift, but always remember that the gift is given to bring honor to her. Use the gift, but more than that, praise the giver of the gift. Thank you Tina.

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