Thursday, March 24, 2011

Just another Sunday...

Sour Cream Biscuits and Runny Blackberries

There is something great about a Sunday morning and the routine that goes with it.  The late start, the dog walking, the dog rescuing (seems to be a common occurrence at my home now), getting home to make brunch.  I like a routine.

This past Sunday was no different.  We got a late start and debated on how we wanted to walk the dogs (whether it was together or separate, in order for me to start brunch).  We decided on together and headed out the door with the pups following at our heels.  To our surprise a little Scottie dog named Maximus was waiting outside for us.  

This is not the first time this has happened; I have done head counts in the backyard that have left me with having 1 dog too many.  I came home after work one day, ready to feed the dogs that we actually own...realizing that we had a third dog in the yard, a little rat looking terrier.  First thought, "OH MY GOD!  There is a third dog in the yard!"  Second thought, "Did Sean put this dog in the yard and not tell me!?!?!?!"  Third thought, "OH MY GOD!  Someone must have thrown you over the fence, you poor thing!"  The "Poor Thing" thought subsided when it proceeded to bare its teeth at me, as he made his way under the fence through a small hole into the yard next door.  I grounded my dogs that day for having friends over when we weren't home and blocked off the hole...I don't think they noticed they were grounded.

Thankfully, Max was not as hateful as the rat terror...I mean terrier.  This little Scottie was kind of sweet, so we put the kids in the backyard together and called the owner.  While waiting for them to return the call, the fur kids played and I started on fixing something to eat.

With all of the excitement, I felt that something easy was in order...Sour Cream Biscuits with Runny Blackberries.  I like this biscuit recipe for its simplicity.  Anything that only takes three ingredients and takes no time at all to mix up and bake is my kind of biscuit.

Sour Cream Biscuits
For printable recipe, please click here
2 C  Self Rising Flour
½ C  Butter, melted
1 C  Sour Cream

Preheat oven to 425°.  Using a wooden spoon, mix the sour cream and butter into the flour.  Using your hands form biscuits, about a ⅓ C of dough ea.  Place on a baking sheet.  Bake until rolls start to brown, approximately 15 min.  Makes 6 to 8 biscuits.

Runny Blackberries
For printable recipe, please click here  
1 Pint Fresh Blacberries or 2 C  Frozen Blackberries
½ stick  Butter
1 Tbsp Flour
½ to 1 C  Sugar (depends on sweetness of the blackberries)
1 to 1½ Tbsp  Orange Juice
A Pinch of Kosher Salt 

In a medium sauce pan, over medium heat, melt the butter.  Stir in black berries and sugar.  After the sugar has melted, stir in the flour.  Let the berries cook down, the consistency should be getting thicker.  Stir in the orange juice and the pinch of salt.  Take off the heat, let set for 10 minutes before serving.  Refrigerate leftovers. 

Runny Blackberries

Sour Cream Biscuits

Sour Cream Biscuits and Runny Blackberries

So within 30 minutes, I had the biscuits and berries on the table and Max was returned to his owner.  I hope next Sunday is a little less hectic than this past Sunday.

Enjoy the foods of your labor.  :-)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Sad News...

I regret to inform everyone that Khloe (fka Shy) passed away last night.  If you read her story, you know that this dog had a hard life...but things did get easier for her the last few months.  People cared for her and loved her and she thrived.  Unfortunately, sometimes love and care are not enough.

Its funny, Khloe/Shy didn't even know how many people were rooting for her.  We all read her story and we made donations, because her story and her smile touched us.  She entered all of our lives; we wanted to be a part of her fairy tail...we all wanted this Cinderella dog to get her happy ending.  She brought a community together and we all hoped for adoption...we all prayed she would make it to her surgery...we all wanted for her to live a happy doggie life...we all wanted these things for her.  Her story started off sad, but ended with compassion, love and joy (if you can tell from the photos...Shy had such a great smile).  She finally received medical care that made her healthy enough to enjoy the rest of her time on Earth, she had gotten her "furever" home (though she has left her family way too soon), she knew what it was like to be loved.  In the end, she was happy. 

I'm going to quit rambling now and leave you with a Hopi Prayer my sister posted almost a year ago for her Hunter

Do not stand
by my grave and weep.
I am not there.
I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints
of snow.
I am the sunlight
on ripened grain.
I am the gentle Autumn's rain.

When you awaken
in the morning hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet
birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars
that shine in the night.
Do not stand
by my grave and weep.
I am not there.
I do not sleep.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Gone to the dogs...

If you know me at all, you know that I have a soft spot for animals (my fur babies are my pride and joy).  So it is only natural to visit blogs that feature fur babies as well.

One of the blogs that I follow involving adorable dogs, Two Pitties in the City, is having a fund raiser raffle for a deserving little pittie named Khloe (formerly known as Shy).  Now, if you go to the link and read her story have a tissue ready (I still tear up when I read it), but take heart; this little girl's story has a happy ending in the fact she has found a forever home.  

Due to the hardships that Khloe faced early on, not being treated for her diabetes, she is in danger of losing her sight completely.  In order to help the family and ensure that Khloe has the best life possible, a donation page was started (click here for the ChipIn Link) in order for her to get the surgery she needs.  The surgery is $2000 and with all of the contributions they are almost there.

The big push in this dog-athon came in the form of a raffle; a $10 donation buys you a ticket and the opportunity to win some really really cool stuff (I have posted the link at the end of the blog entry for more information).  I donated early on, but I wanted to do something extra...I am donating one of the "Everyday" raffle prizes.  

My Everyday Prize donation...homemade dog treats (by yours truly), with cookie cutters, and the recipe (plus another lil surprise in the box in the form of my choosen packing materials).

Dog treats in mason jars, with cookie cutters and recipes

Closeup of "Doggie Cheese Treats with corresponding cookie cutters"
Closeup of "Peanut Butter Dog Biscuits with corresponding cookie cutter"
If you have questions on this raffle prize, please feel free to leave a comment and I will respond back to it as soon as possible.
Don't be "Shy", give a little today.  :-)

Enjoy the foods of your labor.  :-)

PS...Here are a few links that you might want to head over to
Khloe's Facebook Page 
Khloe's ChipIn Donation Page 
Khloe's (fka Shy) Story
Khloe's (fka Shy) Surgery 
Khloe's Raffle  This will give you info on prizes and how to submit your donation to be entered in the raffle
Two Pitties in the City

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cookin It, Old Scool...

There was something about standing in front of the stove today with my cast iron skillets that made me think about my grandmothers and how they use to cook "back in the day".  It was nostalgic in a way that was hard to describe; the heating of the cast iron, warming of tortillas, the smell of pork being fried in lard wafting through the was comforting.  What caused all of this sentimental cooking today, carnitas tacos and refried beans.

Every Sunday (or almost every Sunday) we have dinner at my sister's and brother in-laws home, in which I proceed to steal all leftovers that I can get my hands on.  This past Sunday, we had pulled pork...which was awesome (click here to see Kirk's BBQ blog).  He suggested using one of my many cast iron skillets to make carnitas with the leftovers.  In case you don't know, carnitas is the most awesome stuff in the WORLD...translating to "little meats"; its pork that has been roasted or braised or fried (I know that's how it is done in El Paso, at least that is what it tastes like and it is AWESOME!!!).

So for lunch today I pulled the leftovers out of the fridge and decided to make carnitas tacos.  I started off by heating up the medium skillet with about a tablespoon of lard and then I threw the pork in to fry it up.  I also heated up the corn tortillas using my 8" skillet that had belonged to Good Mama (my mother's mother, can you tell I have family from Kentucky). 

I then mixed up slaw to go on the tacos.  The slaw is from a recipe, from a restaurant in Old Mesilla, NM...La Posta.

La Posta's Coleslaw
For printable recipe, please click here
1 small head of cabbage shredded 
     or 2+ cups shredded (trust me you will need more)
C olive oil or Wesson oil
2 Tbs.  apple cider vinegar
1 tsp.  salt
1 tsp.  pepper

Mix together oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.  Add cabbage and mix thoroughly.  Chill before serving.  Add more cabbage as necessary.

La Posta's Coleslaw
Truly, this is the best slaw ever and so quick and easy to make.  I whipped this up to go over the tacos and was ready to eat in a matter of minutes.

Enjoy the foods of your labor.  :-)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Bread...3 ways...

I recently received a recipe from Sean's mom, Vickie, for "Zucchini Bread".  Looking at it, it seemed like a perfect "squash" bread recipe (zucchini or pumpkin, thanks for the term Christa) and I bet  I can get a banana nut bread out of it too.

Not being able to wait to buy zucchini I adapted it for pumpkin bread first, since I had pumpkin on hand.  It was just as I suspected;  it was GOOD.
Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bread, Sliced and Buttered
 Next...I went to the store and bought zucchini a few days later to try out the recipe as it was written.
Zucchini Bread
For printable recipe, please click here
3  Eggs
1 C  Oil
2 C  Zucchini (peeled and finely grated)
2 C  Sugar
3 tsp  Vanilla
3 C  Flour
1 tsp  Salt
1 tsp  Baking Soda
½  tsp  Baking Powder
3 tsp  Cinnamon
2 tsp  Nutmeg* (I added nutmeg, because I like it w/ cinnamon)
1 C  Nuts (optional)
butter and 2 tsp flour to prep 2 loaf pans

Preheat oven to 350°.  Prepare 2 loaf pans, by greasing them with butter and dusting them with flour.  Combine the following dry ingredients in a large bowl:  flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nuts (I used pecans).  Whisk together.

 In a small bowl, beat eggs until light and foamy.

In a large mixing bowl, add:  oil, sugar, zucchini, egg and vanilla.  Mix well.

Mix the flour mixture into the wet ingredients.  Mix well

Pour the batter into the 2 prepped loaf pans and bake @ 350° for 1 hour.

 For Pumpkin Bread:  Omit zucchini.  Use 1 can pumpkin, ¾ C of oil instead and add 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice, & a dash of cloves.    
For Banana Nut Bread:  Omit zucchini.  Use 2 C ripe banana, ¾ C of oil instead.

What came out of the oven were 2 perfect golden loaves of zucchini bread.  They were a tasty treat.
Zucchini Bread
I want to thank Vickie for the recipe, we have really enjoyed it and its versatility (tonight we bake banana nut bread). 

Enjoy the foods of your labor.  :-)