I hope you all had a marvelous Thanksgiving, or if outside the US a marvelous weekend.
I love Thanksgiving. So many memories and chances to make new ones with my family. I realized this year that this was the 20th Thanksgiving dinner I have made. Twenty turkeys, twenty batches of stuffing, way more than twenty pies but only nineteen batches of mashed potatoes. Finally, I broke free from tradition and convinced my family that mashed potatoes are unnecessary and they went along with it! Less work for me and no leftover potatoes to find a use for, bliss.
With the pesky potatoes out of the way the only things left are the stuffing and the turkey. Everyone loves leftover stuffing so that's not an issue, leaving just the massive bird to get creative with.
I wanted to find a recipe that is easy and doesn't cause many dishes, because the last thing I want to see this weekend is another sink full of dishes. This recipe fit perfectly. Not only does it use turkey but if you have leftover rolls you can use them to make the breadcrumbs, I used the leftover challah I made for stuffing.
My family loved this one. I was asked to make another one immediately after this one was eaten.
2 cups diced cooked turkey
1 cup soft breadcrumbs
1 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup milk, hot
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons minced green pepper
2 tablespoons minced pimento
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a metal ring mold or bread pan.
Combine all the ingredients and pour into the prepared pan.
Bake for 35-40 minutes.
Allow the it to sit at room temperature for 5 minutes before unmolding.
Serve with sauteed mushrooms.
*Tip- I melted the butter with the hot milk to save a step.
Life is such a wonderful, amazing, complex thing. So beautiful and sometimes so painful but always unexpected.
This week my youngest daughter turned 14. I never imagined when I had her that inside I would feel exactly the same when she became a teen that I did the day she was born. That I would feel the need to protect her yet also want to see her succeed on her own. That I would still feel like a 23 year old instead of a 37 year old. Do we always feel the same on the inside? Do we never feel like an adult?
This week I also spent a huge amount of time on my newest project. I keep finding out more about him and his time spent fighting in the war. It's been like putting together a huge puzzle.
Anyway, on to more pressing things, Thanksgiving. Time to get the fridge cleaned out, the oven scrubbed and the grocery list made. Time to start thinking about menus and new recipes, but most important, time to remember what we're thankful for. To remember how even when life gets hard there is always something to be grateful for.
So, seeing as we are all busy working on the feast later in the week I kept this weeks recipe simple, yet in step with the holidays.
Peanut Brittle Cookies
2 dozen cookies
1/2 cup butter or shortening
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup salted peanuts, finely chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup salted peanuts, coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Butter an 11x14 inch rectangle.
Cream together the butter and brown sugar. Add the vanilla.
Beat the egg and add two tablespoons of it to the butter sugar mixture.
Stir in the finely chopped peanuts.
Mix in the flour, cinnamon and baking soda.
Press the dough into the buttered rectangle.
Brush the remaining egg over the dough, sprinkle the roughly chopped nuts over the top.
Bake for 20-25 minutes. Allow to cool and break apart with your hands.
Last week I mentioned my new project, this week was completely consumed by it. I love learning more about the boy who wrote the letters but I am still missing a big piece of the puzzle and I am hoping that this new website will help to clear up some of the mystery.
I am also really enjoying learning more about the era the letters were written in. I have always love the period between 1920-1950, its actually one of my all-time favorites, but now I am learning a lot more about the cavalry and about the Waal River crossing. It's fascinating and extremely sad at the same time. So many men died fighting in World War 2, there are so many untold stories, so many lives effected. I have been in contact with a historian who wrote a book about that river crossing and to a man who was there and survived it. I have loved every conversation and hope that I get to have many more. It has been an amazing journey. The new site is http://everlovecurtiss.weebly.com/ as of right now it is mostly a place holder but I will be changing that as the week goes on. There will also be a Facebook page to make it easier to keep up as the story is told.
Anyway, because I have been stuck in the 40's all week I decided to stick with it for the recipe of the week.
I hope you have a great week and cook something beautiful.
Cherry Almond Coffee Cake
1 cup canned cherries, drained
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup whole almonds
2 cups sifted all purpose flour
3 tablespoons powdered milk
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup shortening, melted and cooled
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a 11x7 inch pan.
Measure out 3/4 cup of the cherries and reserve the rest for garnish.
Combine the 3/4 cup of cherries with the brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and melted butter. Stir in the almonds and set aside.
Stir together the flour, powdered milk, baking powder and salt.
Whisk together the eggs, granulated sugar and water.
Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet. Begin to stir and then add the melted shortening. Continue mixing only until barely combined.
Spread the batter into the prepared pan.
Top with the cherry and brown sugar mixture.
Bake for 35 minutes or until the cake tests done.
Garnish with the reserved cherries.
This coffee cake is delicious. I used sour cherries because its what my family prefers. Also I didn't have an 11x7 pan so I used a 10x6 which worked fine, but took longer to cook.
Next time I make it I think I will cut the almonds in half. I think the whole ones are just a little too big.
I am always doing a thousand different things. Cooking, writing,reading, crafting, working on homeschool projects with my daughters, something. And I now have a new one.
Two years ago I went to visit my grandmother who thought she was dying, she wasn't, but while I was there she showed me a box of old letters that she had in her closet. I thought they would be from my grandfather, they weren't, they were from a boy who my grandma met before the start of World War 2. She let me read they and I fell in love, the letters were so sweet and had beautiful drawing on them, I ended up wanting to know more about this mysterious boy who wrote them. So my grandmother told me the story of how they met. World War 2 was a war that changed the lives of pretty much everyone alive at that time and the story told by my grandmother, the box of letters and information I have gathered on my own tells a beautiful story . One that I will be sharing on a new website in a couple weeks. I guess I can never have too many projects going.
This weeks recipe is one I had never heard of and was rather unsure of before I made it. The combination of ingredients, especially the canned peas had me worried. I never should have had a doubt. The recipe is amazing and according to my family has to become part of the normal dinner rotation.
I hope you like it.
Yorkshire Country Captain
one 3 pound chicken, cut into serving size pieces
3/4 cup diced salt pork
3 large onions
2 cups chicken stock
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup rice
2 cups canned peas
Mince enough of one onion to measure 1/4 cup then thinly slice all the remaining onion. Melt some butter in a saute pan and add the sliced onion. Cook until caramelized.
Slice the almonds then brown them in a pan with a small amount of butter. Set them aside.
Dredge the chicken pieces in a mixture of flour, salt, pepper and curry powder.
In a large pot, brown the salt pork and minced onions.
Add the chicken and brown slowly. Add the add the stock and simmer until the chicken is tender.
Cook the rice using your preferred method.
When the chicken is cooked remove it from the pan. Combine the 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons of flour and whisk it into the pan of stock. Cook, stirring constantly until the sauce has thickened.
Quickly heat the canned peas.
To serve, lay down a bed of rice, place the chicken on that, cover the with sauce. Garnish with the peas and almonds.
I hope you all had a magical Halloween. Halloween in my house is a big deal, second only to Christmas. We decorate in September, always go to the pumpkin patch to get our pumpkins and go all out on our costumes. But, as I sit here I'm feeling like a traitor. I'm surrounded by Halloween decorations, eating Halloween candy with traces of Halloween makeup still around my eyes, while I watch White Christmas. I love horror movies and all things scary but, for some reason, this year I have really been waiting for Christmas. When I was growing up we put up our Christmas tree on Halloween and listened to Christmas music all year long. My mom would leave our bedrooms doors cracked and leave a tape player on in the hall when we went to bed with quiet music on it, usually Christmas music. I've watched a month of horror movies and carved pumpkins and now I'm ready to move on.
Minestra Di Pasta
3/4 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 canned anchovy fillets, chopped
1 cup finely chopped parsley
3-14 ounce cans chickpeas
4 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
1 quart water
1 pound macaroni noodles
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat the oil in a large stockpot. Add the garlic, anchovies and parsley and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the chickpeas with all the liquid from the cans, the tomatoes, rosemary and water, let cook for 30 minutes.
Cook the noodles according to the package for al dente, then add them to the chickpeas.
Allow the soup to cook for a few more minutes with the noodles. Serve with plenty of cheese.
This recipe is from 1963 and very tasty but, I have to say its not much of a soup. It doesn't have enough broth. The broth is very flavorful but there needs to be more of it. When I make this next time I will probably use a few cans of tomatoes or only use half the amount of noodles.
P.S. I am having another cookbook giveaway on my Facebook page so be sure to head over there for a chance to win.