Tuesday, August 20, 2019

The Last of the Summer and a Bread Recipe

Summer is winding down and the kids in my neighborhood have gone back to school. Mornings are getting cooler, too.  Every morning I open a couple of windows so that Bella can enjoy whatever is going on outside in the yard, although it is still dark when I am getting up for work now.

My zinnias are doing well and always bring the butterflies. They are just about the easiest thing to grow. I bought the seeds at the Dollar Tree for 25 cents for each envelope back in the Spring.

We have so many tomatoes and jalapenos right now. We have frozen some, given some away, and eaten so many tomato sandwiches that Papa has actually said that he has almost had enough (we pretty much grow tomatoes just for the sandwiches).

I am making another tomato pie today. It was so delicious last time that we want another one.

I also tried a No-Knead Whole Wheat Bread. There were a lot of steps but  I worked them into whatever I did throughout the day easily. Next time I will add vital wheat gluten to add more texture and absorb more of the moisture. I had some toast made with the bread this morning and it was very good.

I hope your day is a good one!

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Weekend Cooking

Classic Southern Tomato Pie

I love to spend time in the kitchen. It's relaxing and a creative outlet for me. Since I work during the week, I will do most of my cooking and baking on the weekends.

This is is what I cooked this past weekend:

I made the Tomato Pie I had planned earlier. It was such a bit hit at our house that I will be making another one next weekend. Here's the link to the recipe I used:  Classic Southern Tomato Pie

I made two kinds of bread: white with a little rye flour to up the fiber content and Cinnamon Raisin. I just started making our bread again and I am thoroughly enjoying it. Since there is only the two of us I will be putting about half of each loaf in the freezer.

Roasted cherry tomatoes. I added basil, garlic, salt, and olive oil. I roasted them at 300 degrees for an hour. They are delish! I will add these to soups, sauces, or wherever.

Tuna Salad for our lunches.

Today Papa will be putting 2 whole chickens on the grill. We will have lots of chicken, but we will use it for chicken and noodles, chicken salad, chicken soup, and chicken broth. Whatever is left over will be tucked into the freezer for future easy meals.

Last weekend we had a picnic with the family and we had a lot of leftover hamburger and hot dog buns. We didn't have the room in the freezer for all of them so I toasted some in the oven and made bread crumbs. I keep them in the freezer and pull them out whenever we need them.

What is on your calendar for future meals?

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Pictures to Share

As you may have noticed I have a new profile picture. It is a photo of my own "Nana" when she was 16 years old and right around the time she met my Grandpa at the rolling skating rink!

This week we have collected many bowls of cherry tomatoes. The orange ones are the sweetest but the red ones are the biggest! And basil. Always basil. I use it fresh or I dry it and use it throughout the winter months.
I made a loaf of bread. I usually use my bread machine to make the dough and then bake it in the oven. We like it better that way. I put some garlic and Italian herbs in this one for more flavor. Papa made many tomato sandwiches with this loaf. Yum!
This picture is of our four grands from the Fourth of July parade❤
We visited Papa's sister and brother-in-law. These flowers were in their front garden and we didn't know what kind they were, so if anyone has a clue what kind they are, please let me know! They are so pretty.

The next 2 pictures are cross-stitched quilts my own Grandma made in the 1980's. They are light-weight and perfect for summer sleeping.

It's hard to believe that we are already in August and summer is winding down in our part of the world. Before we know it we will be pulling out our sweaters and jackets again! Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, August 2, 2019

My Walk

I will often walk during my lunch at work. There are trails and sidewalks that make walking enjoyable and on a beautiful day like today, it was especially nice. 

 The sky was a perfect shade of blue, the breeze was light and the birds were chirping.

It is so nice to get out from behind the computer screen in the office and soak up the sunshine and warm air. I always feel energized after being outside in the middle of my work day.

Have a beautiful weekend!

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Our Meal Plan

Since Papa is off on Fridays, he usually takes the opportunity to scour the grocery store sales and marked-down items. This week's best sale was whole chickens for 49 cents a pound which is a super price in our area. The limit was 5 chickens so he bought 5 and then we went back Saturday morning  and bought 5 more. Toothpaste was 88 cents each and so I asked Papa to get some toothpaste. Well, you had to buy 8 to get the toothpaste for 88 cents so that is what he did. We won't be buying toothpaste for a very long time!

Our Meal Plan for the Week:

1. Chuck Roast on the grill with BLT pasta salad.
2. Roast chicken and vegetables.
3. White Chicken Chili and cornbread (Our granddaughters will be joining us)
4. Ham and lentil soup in the crock pot
5. Tacos made with the chuck roast meat
6. Leftovers

Chances are there will lots of leftover food so some of it will go in the freezer for future meals.

Our tomatoes are starting to come in and one plan I have is to make a tomato pie.

                                                                 Our girl Bella

Friday, July 19, 2019

The Garden

Last week was pretty hot in the upper 80's and low 90's, and the last thing I wanted to do was work outside but there were weeds. Boy, were there weeds!
 This is my first year growing nasturtiums. Most of the flowers are red but there are a few yellow ones, too. I got the seeds from the Dollar Tree.
 My hosta is doing beautifully. It's in it's third year in my yard.

Today is supposed to be 95 degrees but this morning we went out to the garden to see if there was anything to pick. This is our first real harvest; green beans, cherry tomatoes, jalapenos and basil. We will eat them for dinner tonight.

The picture above is our 4 tomato plants, jalapeno plant, basil, and lettuce. We have a very small yard but we try to get what we can from it. Next year I will be planning more carefully so we can get even more.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Keeping My Pantry Stocked-Canned Tomatoes

Boy, was it hot today! It was a real blessing to come home after a long day and have a simple meal of ham that I had taken from the freezer leftover from Easter and fry some eggs with some toast for our dinner.

I needed dinner for the next night so after preparing our lunches for the following day, I made spaghetti sauce. This is where the pantry part comes in. I always keep cans of crushed, diced, and whole tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste along with seasonings in my pantry. I sauteed half an onion with a little sausage, although I have made it with just onion powder and no meat or ground beef or turkey. I then added my seasonings: garlic powder, oregano, basil, and a pinch of cayenne. I then put in a large can of crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and just because it was in the refrigerator, a little homemade chicken broth. At some point I taste it and will tweak my flavorings and may even add a little sweetener. I let it simmer for a couple of hours.

This will feed the two of us for a least a couple of meals. We like it over pasta, of course, but I have also had it over spaghetti squash, if I am feeling a little low-carbish. I also use it for pizza sauce. I store any sauce that is left over in the freezer for future meals.

We also use our canned tomatoes for chili, tomato and vegetable soups, and Spanish rice.

I love having ready ingredients in my pantry. It has saved us lots of money over the years.