Welcome to my site!

Welcome to my site!
I'm Cindy, and I love to cook! And, I love to eat... hence the size of my rear end! I come from a long line of cooks. My great great Grandmother was a cook in the original Harvey Houses. My grandmother Julia was an awesome cook, and my mom was incredible. I owe my skills to these great women. Especially my Mom who said this to me about making gravy... "Cindy Lynn, wallpaper paste is wallpaper paste & gravy is gravy. Never the two shall meet!" Shall we say my first experience at making gravy left a little bit to be desired! Thank the high heavens my cooking skills have improved since then! Enjoy!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry Sauce

I found this recipe online. It sounded very yummy – and the recipe didn’t disappoint. It was very easy to make and the family loved it. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs (you can use breasts, but the thighs are more flavorful)
1 large red onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
2 Tbsp olive oil or grapeseed oil
1 14-oz can coconut milk (I used light coconut milk)
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 Tbsp fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
Hot cooked rice

Directions:

1 In a small bowl, mix together the salt, ground coriander, cumin, ground cloves, cinnamon, ground cardamom, black pepper, chili powder, and turmeric. Set aside.

2 Rinse chicken, pat dry. Cut into 1-inch pieces. Put into a bowl and sprinkle the spice mix over all the pieces. Coat well and let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours.

3 In a large skillet heat 1 Tbsp oil on medium high heat. Add the onions and jalapeños and cook for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Remove the onions, peppers and garlic from the pan and put into a medium sized bowl. Set aside. Use the same pan for the next step.

4 Add 1 Tbsp oil to the skillet and heat on medium high heat. Add one half of the chicken pieces, spreading them out on the pan so they are not crowded. Brown for a few minutes on each side. When the chicken pieces are cooked through, and no pink remains, remove from pan, add to the bowl with the onions. Cook the second batch of chicken pieces the same way. Remove from pan, add to bowl with onions.

5 Add the coconut milk, minus a couple tablespoons, to the skillet. In a small bowl, mix the remaining coconut with the corn starch to dissolve the corn starch. Add the corn starch mixture back to the skillet with the coconut milk. Cook on medium heat and stir till thick and bubbly. Mix in the Worcestershire sauce. Add chicken mixture, basil, and ginger. Cook 2 minutes more to cook through.

Serve over rice. Serves 4.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Chicken Shawarma

I found this recipe on the Cooking Light website. I had not previously eaten shawarma, in fact I'm not sure that I've ever heard of it. Shawarma is a Middle Eastern dish of garlicky meat or poultry served on pitas. This chicken version is flavored with a savory yogurt sauce. I decided not to go through the process of threading the chicken onto skewers and then grilling. So, I pan fried the chicken strips in a tiny amount of olive oil. Turned out GREAT! The chicken was succulent, perfectly spiced, and really delicious!

Ingredients:

Chicken:
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon curry powder
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 16 (3-inch) strips

Sauce:
1/2 cup plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons tahini
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 garlic clove, minced
(Note: Sometimes when I eat tahini, my mouth gets very sensitive. So, I decided not to use the tahini. I added 1 tsp of curry powder to the sauce. It turned out delicious.)

Remaining ingredients:
Cooking spray
4 (6-inch) pitas
1 cup chopped romaine lettuce
8 (1/4-inch-thick) tomato slices

Directions:

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

2. To prepare chicken, combine first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Add chicken to bowl; toss well to coat. Let stand at room temperature 20 minutes.

3. To prepare sauce, combine yogurt and next 4 ingredients (through 1 garlic clove), stirring with a whisk.

4. Thread 2 chicken strips onto each of 8 (12-inch) skewers. Place kebabs on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side or until done. (This is where I deviated from the recipe. I opted to just fry the chicken pieces in a non-stick skillet with a small amount of olive oil.)

5. Place pitas on grill rack; grill 1 minute on each side or until lightly toasted. Place 1 pita on each of 4 plates; top each serving with 1/4 cup lettuce and 2 tomato slices. Top each serving with 4 chicken pieces; drizzle each serving with 2 tablespoons sauce.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Spinach Frittata

Love this recipe. So good for lunch, or for a light supper. It is one from the Richard Simmons collection. Truly spectacular. I really like tofu, but if you're not a fan... trust me... you'd never guess there was tofu in it!

Ingredients:

1 - 10 oz pkg. Frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained
12 oz of well drained SOFT tofu
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 crushed clove garlic
1/4 tsp. Pepper
2 tbls. Lemon juice
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
3 tbls. Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp. Dried basil
1/2 cup steamed sliced leeks, white part only
1 can of redi-cut tomatoes, drained
4 oz. (1cup) shredded low fat mozzarella cheese
Lemon & parsley for garnish.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In food processor or blender, combine spinach, tofu, lemon juice, Parmesan, mustard, basil, salt, pepper, and garlic. Process until smooth.

Fold in leeks, tomato and cheese.

Pour mixture into a 10” pie plate coated with non-stick spray.

Bake 55 to 60 minutes or until set. Let sit 15 minutes before slicing

Garnish with lemon slices and parsley.

Makes 4 servings - 202 calories.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Beef Stroganoff Soup

My friend Stephanie recently moved to Scotland. On her blog she wrote about making beef stroganoff, but she didn’t realize that the cream of mushroom soup she purchased was not condensed, and therefore the stroganoff was runny and more like a soup. This gave me the bright idea to intentionally try to make Beef Stroganoff soup. I think it turned out really good. It’s creamy and delicious and definitely a keeper!

Ingredients:

1 – 1 ½ lbs extra lean ground beef (I use 7% fat – but if you use a higher fat content, make sure to drain the fat from the meat.
6 oz. egg noodles, cooked and drained – according to package directions
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 white onion chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
8 oz. sliced mushrooms (I used “Baby Bellas”)
¼ cup brandy
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
4 cups beef broth
1 ½ cups water
2 beef bouillon cubes
½ teaspoon thyme
8 - 10 oz sour cream (I used light)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped, for garnish

Directions:

Spray a non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Cook the ground beef until browned and cooked through. Place the cooked meat in your soup pot, along with the cooked noodles.

In the same non-stick skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of butter into 1 tablespoon of olive oil; sauté the onions and garlic for about 7 minutes. They should be translucent – but not yet browning. Add the mushrooms and continue to sauté until the mushrooms are cooked and everything is nicely browned. Add the brandy and continue cooking until bubbly. Add everything to the soup pot. (If you feel confident, light the brandy on fire after adding to the mushrooms and onions. Let it flame for about a minute – or until it burns out. This burns off the alcohol.)

In the same skillet, melt 4 tablespoons of butter. Add the flour to make a roux. Continue cooking and stirring until the mixture becomes a light peanut butter color. Be very careful not to let the roux burn. Gradually add 3 cups of the beef broth to the roux, whisking to thoroughly combine, making sure to not leave any lumps. Add to the soup pot.

Add the remaining beef broth to the soup pot, along with the water, the bouillon cubes, and the thyme. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat and let simmer for a couple of minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream. Make sure to thoroughly combine and not leave any lumps. Serve with fresh chopped parsley sprinkled over all.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Spinach Citrus Salad

Here is a recipe from one of Richard Simmons’ cookbooks. I love this one! It is very tasty and refreshing.

Salad Ingredients:

2 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed dried and chilled
1 small orange, peeled and segmented
2 tablespoons finely sliced red onion
3 walnut halves, coarsely chopped

Dressing Ingredients:

1 tablespoon natural rice vinegar
¼ tsp Dijon mustard
¼ tsp sugar
½ tsp olive oil
Dash of salt and pepper

Directions:

Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl.

Arrange the salad ingredients in a bowl. Pour dressing over salad and toss.

Makes one delicious serving as a meal, or serves two as a side salad.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Herbed Cucumber and Yogurt Soup

This is a Weight Watchers recipe. I altered it slightly by using Greek yogurt instead of regular low-fat yogurt - and chicken broth in place of water. I also added the step of using a blender to more fully combine the ingredients. Very refreshing and delicious. I served it with a Greek chicken breast and some Quinoa Pilaf. The flavor is very similar to the Greek sauce, tzatziki. You could also take this for lunch with toasted pita pockets, or a pita sandwich. Yummy!

Ingredients:

3 cups plain Greek yogurt
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 Tbls. finely chopped fresh dill, or 1 ½ tsp dried dill
1 Tbls. finely chopped fresh mint
1 Tbls. snipped fresh chives
1 garlic clove, minced (I put it through the garlic press)
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
½ tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. white pepper
1 cup chicken broth
Fresh mint, dill or chives for garnish

Directions:

In a large non-reactive bowl, combine the yogurt, cucumbers, dill, mint, chives, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper and chicken broth. Thoroughly mix to combine well.

Place half of the mixture into a blender, and blend well. Return to bowl.

Place in refrigerator, covered, until chilled.

Serve garnished with the mint, dill or chives.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lentil Salad

I based this salad off Richard Simmons’ “Yentl Lentil Salad”. I pretty much used the same ingredients (except I excluded the bell pepper, which you could add if you so desire) but I changed the measurements. I served this for dinner with pan fried boneless skinless chicken breasts. Tasty, AND healthy.

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked lentils, rinsed and drained (I followed the package directions to boil them for about 15 – 20 minutes. You don’t want them to be too soft, so check on them often.)
¼ of a red onion, finely chopped
3- 4 celery ribs, finely chopped
¾ - 1 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 – 15 oz can diced tomatoes
¼ cup lemon juice
1 tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp garlic powder
Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

In a large bowl combine the lentils, onion, celery, tomatoes, parsley, cumin powder and garlic powder. Drizzle olive oil over all and toss. Pour lemon juice over all and stir to combine. Sprinkle with salt and pepper; mix to combine well.

Let stand for about 10 – 15 minutes. Toss one more time before serving.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Spicy Baked Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

I saw Claire Robinson from the Food Network make these a couple of weeks ago. They sounded so wonderful and savory that I had to make them right away. We had them during “cocktail hour” and they were fantastic. What a wonderful addition to my repertoire. Different and unexpected – and quite delicious!

Ingredients:

2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
Kosher salt

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Rinse and drain the chickpeas well. Dry by rolling them around in a kitchen towel.

Combine the oil, paprika, cumin, and cayenne in a large bowl. Add chickpeas and toss to coat evenly.

Transfer the chickpeas to a parchment-lined baking sheet and spread them out in a single layer. Sprinkle with salt.

Bake until golden and crispy, 25 to 35 minutes, shaking the tray to toss after 15 minutes.

Remove the baking sheet from the oven and transfer the chickpeas to a serving bowl.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Lamb and Spinach Curry (Lamb Saag)

Oh my!  Indian Lamb.  Probably my FAVORITE Indian meal.  So succulent and flavorful.  Serve it over fluffy aromatic basmati rice.  The perfect meal!  I use my large non-stick skillet with a lid from Costco for this recipe. It is about 3 – 4 inches deep. Perfect for a meal like this.

Ingredients:

6 tbls Olive oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
6 cloves
6 cardamom pods, break open and remove the seeds
1 cinnamon stick
1 boneless leg of lamb, visible fat removed and cut into 1” pieces
2 onions chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
2” piece of ginger, finely chopped
2 tbls ground cumin
2 tbls ground coriander
1 tbls turmeric
1 tsp salt
Cayenne pepper to taste
¼ - ½ cup water
1 tbls garam masala (A spice blend that is available in Indian food stores. If you can’t find an Indian food store, you can also make it yourself using common spices and a coffee grinder. Search the internet for the recipe. )
2 – 10oz pkgs frozen chopped spinach – defrosted and all excess water squeezed out
¾ cup half and half, or cream

Directions:

Warm the skillet and add the olive oil. When heated, add the cumin seeds, cloves, cardamom seeds and cinnamon stick. Heat until the seeds begin to sputter. Add the chopped onions, garlic and ginger. Sauté for 4 – 5 minutes.

Add the lamb pieces and fry for a couple of minutes. Add the ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric, salt and cayenne. Fry until you can’t see any pink on the outside of the lamb. Sometimes the lamb creates enough liquid on its own, so I don’t have to add any liquid. If it seems dry, add a little bit of the water. You can always add more if necessary.

Reduce the heat and cover with a lid. Cook for about 50 minutes. Check often to make sure that the mixture hasn’t dried out.

Remove lid; add the spinach and garam masala. Stir well to combine, and replace lid. Cook for about 10 – 15 more minutes.

Remove lid, increase heat. If there is some excess liquid you can cook for several minutes to let it evaporate. Add the half and half. Cook to heat through. You want the mixture to be creamy – not runny. If there is still too much liquid you can mix a little cornstarch with cold water and add to the lamb.

Serve over fluffy white rice – basmati is preferable.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Quinoa Pilaf

I love quinoa. It really is the perfect grain and incredibly delicious. I love the nuttiness of it and the texture. Here’s a wonderful recipe that was inspired by Aarti Sequeira on Food Network. She likes to use spices and put an Indian spin on many of her dishes. I enjoy her show “Aarti’s Party”. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 ½ cup quinoa
2 ¼ cup chicken stock or broth
½ a red onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic finely minced
½ tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. garam masala
Olive Oil
½ cup chopped dried fruit (I used cherries, next time I am going to use apricots)
½ cup nuts (I used pine nuts, next time I am going to use cashews)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Juice of 1 lime

Directions:

Quinoa must be well rinsed before using. I place it in a fine mesh sieve and run water over it for several minutes.

Place quinoa in a saucepan, along with chicken stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 10 – 15 minutes; until the liquid is completely absorbed. Fluff with a fork, replace lid and let sit for several minutes.

While the quinoa is cooking, drizzle olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Sauté the red onion and garlic until the onion is translucent. Add the spices to the pan and cook for several minutes.

Add the nuts and chopped fruit. Continue to sauté until heated through. If necessary, turn off heat while waiting for quinoa to finish cooking.

Add quinoa to the onion and fruit mixture. Stir well, well return to heat. Let the flavors mix well – sprinkle lime juice over all and continue to combine. Salt and Pepper to taste. Serve and enjoy this delicious combination of flavors.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Cream Cheese Frosting

Autumn has arrived, and I always have an urge to start baking and cooking hearty meals that take hours on the stove.  I wanted something yummy to make, and was thinking of cupcakes - but this quickly transformed into muffins.  Found a great recipe on The Pioneer Woman.com website.  I doubled the recipe because I wanted to make the muffins a little bit larger - and I wanted to have enough to share with neighbors and take a few to work.    I added cloves to the muffin batter and used less butter in the cream cheese frosting.  The muffins can be frosted, or left plain.  They are wonderful either way.  Great recipe - totally easy - and completely delicious!  Below is the recipe for 12 muffins, I doubled everything, and ended up with 21 muffins.

Ingredients:

FOR THE MUFFINS:
1 cup All-purpose Flour
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1½ teaspoon Cinnamon
¼ teaspoons Ground Ginger
Pinch of cloves, about 1/8 tsp.
½ teaspoons Nutmeg
½ teaspoons Salt
4 Tablespoons Butter, cut into pieces
1 cup (heaping) Pumpkin Puree
½ cup Evaporated Milk
1 whole Egg
1½ teaspoon Vanilla
½ cups Golden Raisins (optional!)
_____
FOR THE TOPPING:
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
¼ teaspoons Nutmeg
_____
FOR FROSTING: (When I doubled this I used 8 oz of cream cheese and still only 1/4 cup of softened butter.)
¼ cups Softened Butter
4 ounces, weight Cream Cheese
½ pounds Powdered Sugar
½ teaspoons Vanilla

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Generously grease 12 muffin tins, or place paper baking cups in the tins and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.

Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Cut in butter with two knives or a pastry blender until it is fully incorporated.

In a separate bowl, mix together pumpkin, evaporated milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture. Add raisins. Fold gently until mixture is just combined.

Pour into a greased muffin pan or paper baking cups. The batter hardly ever fills all twelve unless you keep it down to 1/2 full. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar-nutmeg mixture over the top of each unbaked muffin.

Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove and allow to cool. Ice with cream cheese frosting.
To make the frosting, mix all ingredients on high until soft and whipped. Spread onto completely cooled muffins, or place into a large pastry bag with a large star tip and go crazy! Store in the fridge, as icing will soften at room temperature.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Jambalaya


I made this with chicken only, because “the boy” doesn’t like shrimp. But, I would totally recommend adding some shrimp and or sausage to this jambalaya. I’ve never made jambalaya before – which is surprising given my love for all things New Orleans. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did!  It was quite tasty and flavorful.

Ingredients:

12 chicken thighs, skinned and boned, and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 bell pepper
3 celery ribs
1 ½ cups rice
2 tsp. salt free Spike seasoning
1 tsp. Seasoning Salt (I use Johnny’s for this recipe)
1 tsp. Tony Chachere’s
1 – 15oz can tomato sauce
1 ½ cup water
Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Directions:

Drizzle olive oil in a large skillet or pan; heat. Add chicken to the pan; season with salt and pepper; sauté until cooked through. Remove from pan.

Drizzle a little more olive oil to the pan, if needed. Add onions and sauté for several minutes. Add garlic, bell pepper and celery. Sauté for about five minutes.

Return meat (and any accumulated juices) to pan, add rice and cook for about one minute. This allows the rice to absorb the pan juices. Add the Spike, Seasoning Salt and Tony’s; stir to combine well. Add the tomato sauce and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover pan, and simmer until the rice is completely cooked. Keep an eye on the jambalaya to be sure the mixture doesn’t dry out or burn on the bottom. Stir occasionally.

Note: If you would like to add shrimp to the jambalaya wait until the last 5 minutes of cooking. If you would like to add andouille sausage – or a similar sausage – add it when you return the chicken to the pan.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Pork Chili with Hominy

I found this recipe on CookingLight.com.  I have adjusted it by adding some butter and flour and using more olive oil than the original recipe called for.  It is really a wonderful full flavored chili that is delicious and doesn't leave you with that "heavy feeling" that you sometimes get after eating these "stick to your ribs" kind of meals.  Give this one a try - I really think you will enjoy it!

Ingredients:



2 tablespoons chile powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ pounds pork, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (I use the pork roasts from Costco that come four to a package. You could also use pork tenderloin – but then reduce the final cooking time to 25 minutes.)
Olive Oil
1 white onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 ½ tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 ½ cups chicken broth
1 (28-ounce) can hominy, drained
1 (14.5-ounce) can stewed tomatoes, “Mexican Style”, undrained



Directions:



Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; set 1 ½ teaspoons spice mixture aside. Add pork to remaining spice mixture in bowl, tossing well to coat.



Drizzle some olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. (I use a large non-stick skillet that I purchased at Costco. See photo below.) Add pork mixture to pan; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Remove pork from pan; set aside.



Drizzle a little bit more olive oil in pan. Add onion, bell pepper, and garlic; sauté 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from pan; set aside. (I added it to the bowl in which I placed the pork.)



Add butter to pan; melt. Add flour to pan and stir to cook for several minutes; making a roux. Return pork and vegetables to pan. Add reserved 1 1/2 teaspoons spice mixture, broth, hominy, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for one hour. (If you used pork tenderloin instead of a pork roast – remember to reduce cooking time to 25 minutes.)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Red Raspberry Jam

Raspberry Jam is my FAVORITE kind of jam.  Love it!  Since I've ventured into the world of canning this summer, it seemed natural that I would try raspberry jam. 

I learned a few things along the way - like, when the recipe says "don't double the recipe" - you really shouldn't double it.  My jam didn't firm up the first time.  Luckily I found a solution, after the fact.  But, that involved having to open all the jars and use something called "liquid cement" - and then reprocess all of the jars.  So, it's like I had to make the jam twice.  Lesson learned!

I opted to use frozen raspberries for the jam; the recipe says to let them thaw first.  The jam is delicious!  I had anticipated giving some of these jars away as Christmas presents.  I have a feeling not too many of these jars are going to be leaving my house.  YUMMY!

Here's a link to the recipe I used.  It really was quite easy and very delicious!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Ginger Cookies

There is a wonderful independently owned movie theater in Salem - called the Salem Cinema.  It's really fantastic and we love going there several times a month to catch a unique movie, enjoy the freshly popped popcorn with REAL butter and brewers yeast, and to devour a delicious HUGE ginger cookie.  Honestly, the best $2 you'll ever spend.  I decided to make some ginger cookies at home.  I found a recipe HERE and they turned out great.  I'm not a confident enough baker to "play with" the ingredients when baking.  So, here is the recipe, as it appears on the AllRecipes.com website.  They aren't as big as the cookies at the theater - but they're packed with as much flavor!

Ingredients

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup margarine, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon water
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons white sugar

Directions

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.

2.In a large bowl, cream together the margarine and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then stir in the water and molasses. Gradually stir the sifted ingredients into the molasses mixture. Shape dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and flatten slightly.
3.Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Baking Powder Biscuits

I haven’t made homemade biscuits in years! But, I’ve been craving them, so I started hunting on the internet for recipe that I liked. I didn’t want to use shortening; I wanted to use butter. I finally found the recipe below from THIS website, which took it from a 1933 recipe.

The recipe talks about not using a pastry cutter or a fork; use your clean hands to work in the butter with the flour. It might be a little bit messy, but it works. I’ve made these biscuits three times and they turn out fluffy and delicious every time. It’s important not to over work the dough. Mix until it’s all moistened, and then gently fold it over, rather than kneading – then roll it out, or pat into shapes.

Ingredients:

2 cups sifted flour
2 tsp. baking powder
4 tablespoons butter or shortening (I used butter)
1/2 tsp. salt
about 3/4 cup milk

Directions:

Sift Flour once, measure, add baking powder and salt, and sift again.

Cut in shortening or butter. (This is where I use my hands by rubbing the butter into the flour).

Add milk gradually, stirring until soft dough is formed.

Turn out on lightly floured board and lightly "knead" for 30 seconds, enough to shape. Roll 1/2 inch thick and cut with 2 inch floured biscuit cutter.

Bake on ungreased sheet in a 400 degree oven for 12-15 minutes.

Makes 12 biscuits.

Note: You can also make tiny tea biscuits that are only 1 ½ inches wide with a small cutter or glass bottom. These are great served with tea, jam or honey. Makes 24.

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