Sunday, December 30, 2012

diner behavior

As you may recall, I am addicted to cooking shows.
Particularly, restaurant cooking shows.

I am mesmerized by them.
I am meant to be a diner owner, I just know it.
If only I had the energy!
And the money!
And the know-how!
And the lack of laziness!

But when K-Man gave me a half-dozen squeeze bottles for Christmas
(along with 237 other things),
I knew just what I would do with them...
Fill them up with various BBQ sauces, ketchup, and mustard
to keep on the kitchen table.
Just like my make-believe diner!!

This is just fabulous, right?


And don't you worry.
I never EVER refrigerate my condiments.
I can't STAND cold condiments.
I have left them out at room temperature for as long as I can remember.
And I'm just fine.
Except for a very quirky personality...and a few twitches.

I'm just so excited.

And there's more diner behavior coming very soon.

(No, I am NOT opening up a diner!)

soup's on!

I've declared Saturdays to be,
Souper Saturdays!

And I might even implement, 
Souper Sundays!

In addition to,
Souper Thursdays!

Okay, never mind.  We'll stick with Saturdays.
My point is, I love a good bowl of soup.
But over the last couple years I have tried to get away from buying
pre-packaged foods, including soups.

So yesterday's homemade soup was,
Baked a bread bowl!
(My use of exclamation points in this post is out of control, my apologies.)

It was super delicious and a hit with everyone!

Here's the soup recipe:
(adapted slightly by your's truly)

9 large baking potatoes
2/3 cup butter
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups whole milk (I used 2%)*
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
8 oz. container of sour cream

Top with:
bacon, fried crisp & broken into small pieces
scallions (I used dried chives)
shredded cheddar cheese

*I plan to use part milk and part chicken broth next time.
I think the broth will add a little more flavor.
But it's delicious with all milk, too.

Bake potatoes, wrapped in foil, in oven at 375 for one hour and 15 minutes.
Let cool.
Hollow out the insides and set aside.
Discard the potato skins...or bring them to me so I can give them to my chickens. :)

In large saucepan, melt butter.  Add flour, whisking for one minute or so.  
Add milk (and chicken broth, if you so desire), a little at a time.
Stir frequently until thickened.
Add those baked potatoes & mash up just a bit 
(we loved having some big chunks left in there!)
Stir in salt, pepper and sour cream.

Serve in a lovely bowl...or go all-out and make bread bowls!

Top with bacon, cheese & scallions (chives).

It really is easy to make your own soup from scratch.
It takes a little planning ahead,
but knowing that you're not filling your family with a gob of
unfamiliar ingredients is well worth it!


Saturday, December 29, 2012

for sale!

Before Christmas,
a few of you asked me about mail-ordering my Ezekiel Bread Mixes.
So sorry I am just now addressing your inquiries!

I certainly can ship them, no problem.
They are $4 each, plus shipping fees (which I need to find out about).
I know that in the past, it was cheaper to ship
at least two mixes at a time.

If you are interested,
please send me an email at

Other items I can easily ship:

Vanilla Extract $16
Ezekiel flour*  $4 (2 lb.) 
Life Flour** $4 (2 lb.)

*Ezekiel flour differs from the bread mix as it is only milled grains & beans 
(organic Kansas wheat, rye, spelt, barley, millet, kidney beans, red beans, green lentils)
The bread mix contains all of that, plus other dry ingredients necessary
for a lovely loaf of bread.
Add this flour to breads, pancakes, tortillas & more!

**Life Flour is my signature flour blend that I add to 
all my baked goodies.
(Organic Kansas wheat, spelt, millet, barley, oat groats)
This flour is much lighter than the Ezekiel flour & much more baked-goods friendly.

Friday, December 28, 2012

lori made popovers!

I've been wanting to make some popovers ever since I saw them
on the Food Network recently.
So I bought a pan and decided to whip some up the other day.

These little sea-creature-looking things, which I topped with grated gruyere cheese,
 were SO YUMMY.
And so very easy.  VERY, VERY!

I literally took a plate of them, fresh from the oven, around the house
to give one to all my people.
They weren't quite as giddy as I was about them,
but they did agree that they were delicious!

And because I am way too lazy to type out the recipe,
you can go HERE to find it.

I will tell you though that a key hint of importance is for
all your ingredients to be warm.

Oh and you don't have to necessarily use a popover pan,
a cupcake pan will suffice!

And you don't have to top them with cheese...but wow, it's yummy.

Please let me know if you try these gems.
They are amazingly fabulous, straight out of the oven, once they are cooled
just enough to handle them.

Mmmmmmmm GOOD!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

he'll take you down

You just better watch out if you come 'round here.

I've got me a lean mean muscle machine keeping a close eye on the homestead.

You don't want a piece of this.
He'll take you down, man.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas day...

Christmas morning started fairly early,
thanks to two little excited kiddos!

And the teens were, well...

not nearly as eager.

They're precious in this state.

Everyone got three presents.
Plus their giant stockings were stuffed ridiculously full.
Macy and Eli had a blast digging in!

Each of the little kiddos got a new bike...

This little fella was so darn excited!
And it was pure torture that he couldn't go out in the frigid cold
to take his new ride for a spin.
So, he just rode around the house, best he could.

And WOW, was I surprised to get THIS present!

For the third year in a row.


One of the gifts my littles got was a costume box!

Isaiah especially loved it.
Along with his craft box!

Lucy loves the costumes, too.
Especially this little flapper dress that she looked adorable in.

And well...
This is our little Chinese Ninja named Wendy.

Then he got more in touch with his heritage...

As did others.

K-Man has to serve in jury duty next week.
So he decided he would wear this plastic Army helmet.
"Reporting for jury duty, SIR!"
That should do the trick for them to send him right home, yes?

My sweet mother-in-law and me.

We had such a great day.

We enjoyed the food...

and we enjoyed each other.

I hope your Christmas was special, too!!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

Here's the first of my two-part Christmas post.

Christmas eve at my parents' house!

Brenden and Nick.
(Nick being spooky.)

Isaiah and my nephew, Leland.
They are hilarious together.

Quite the boy-energized powerhouse, these two!

All brothers-in-law should have matching sleep-pants.

Nick and my nephew Paul...and their ever-growing beards.

The original four!

My fabulous sister Dana and me.
(We missed you, Robin!)

Lucy and her Ninny.

The matriarch and patriarch of our crazy clan!

We had a lovely evening!

Next up, Christmas day.

(See ya in the next post.)
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