Tag Archives: recipes

An oldy but goody recipe….

I posted this cake on Instagram and was asked for the recipe…..

I found this Chocolate Chip Cake recipe,over 40 years ago.
In an old Better Homes & Garden magazine.
I was newly married,and thought it looked like something I could easily make.
I made and it was a hit!
I made it a few times after that.
Two baby boys joined the family.They loved it,too.
But then I ‘lost’ the recipe.
Meaning I put it somewhere and couldn’t find it.
After the kitchen was reno’d,and I was unpacking things,
and putting them away,
there it was!
Screaming,”Make me!”
So,today,I finally got around to it.


And if you want to make it
it’s sooo easy
here ya go…

Chocolate Chip Loaf Cake
2 C sifted all purpose flour
1 C firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C granulated sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 C vegetable shortening
1 C milk
3 eggs
1/2 C semisweet chocolate pieces
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
Shadow Frosting

Grease a 9x5x3 loaf pan;line bottom with wax paper;grease paper.
Measure flour,brown sugar,granulated sugar,baking powder,salt,baking soda,shortening,and milk into large bowl of electric mixer.Add eggs.chocolate and vanilla
Beat 1/2 minute at low speed,scraping sides of bowl constantly.Increase speed to high;beat 3 minutes scraping side of bowl several times.Turn into prepared pan.
Bake at 350* i hour and 20 minutes,or until center springs back when lightly pressed..Cool on wire rack about 40 minutes.Remove from pan;cool completely.
Frost with Shadow Frosting.

Shadow Frosting
2 /c 10x sugar””
1/2 C vegetable shortening
1 tsp vanilla
4T hot milk
1 square unsweetened chocolate
1/2 tsp shortening
Combine 10x sugar,shortening,vanilla and milk in a small bowl.Beat at high speed about 10 minutes or until frosting is very fluffy.Spread on top and sides of cake.
Melt chocolate with shortening.Drizzle over sides of frosted cake for shadow effect.




In the Spring garden,I think I just might have over planted kale.
No….I know I did.IMG_1956Curley leaf Kale.I planted over 8 plants.Perfect for salads,as long as you massage it first with olive oil,and good for sautéing.Seems to take the heat well.I planted this last year and it did well,so I tried it again this  year.I’ll plant this variety again.IMG_1957 Russian Kale.It’s not heat tolerant,at all! I think I will try it again,in the Fall garden.I think the heat,here,has given it a bitter taste.So,it shall wait for Fall.
Notice the grape tomatoes taking over?

IMG_1955This a straight leaf variety(I forget the name).It doesn’t seem very heat tolerant,and takes a lot of water.It’s growing under an arbor thingy – is that a gardening word? that I made for the pole beans to grow on (I’ll do a post on that,later).Which gives it some shade.But it seems like something likes to gnaw holes on it.I’ve looked for whatever bugger it is,but I can’t find it.It still tastes good,though.But it might do better in the Fall garden.I’ll try it again.
Soooo,what to do……
After using some in salads,adding some to Spanish Bean soup(which is amazing, by the way),sautéing some with a ham steak and adding black-eyed peas(I got the recipe from Michael Symon on The Chew and it makes for a great,quick dinner!),
I figured I’d make some kale chips.
When it’s 93* out …I think they call that hot as Hell… and no rain  in sight,what else can you do but cook? It’s too hot to garden,after all…

I used the straight leaf kale,making sure it was very dry.I’ve made this with the Curly Leaf variety,but the straight seems to do better with this.After cutting out the center vein-that is way too tough to eat,so make sure you cut that out-I spread it on a cookie sheet.Sprinkle it with olive oil,garlic powder,and parmesan cheese.Put it in the oven at 300* for 30 minutes or so.Make sure you keep an eye on it and take it out just as it starts to get crispy and sprinkle it with kosher salt and if you prefer,more cheese.
Makes a great snack,and crumbled up and added to a salad.

So,how’s your garden growing?
Have an over abundance of anything?
If you do,how do you deal with it?

My mother always said….

…if you’re pissed off at life,bake bread.It will get all those feelings out.
Today,I wasn’t pissed off at anybody,or anything….
But,I was almost out of bread!
It made me think of me in the 70’s.
Back then,I went through a kind of hippie/earth-mother phase.Besides wearing granny glasses and Mexican wedding-style dresses all of the time,we(the ex and I) grew all our own vegetables
…organically,I might add.Before it was cool…
and canned and froze everything.
And I baked bread.
All kinds of bread.Rye,white,whole wheat,you name it.
But then reality hit.
It includes 2 children and jobs,health and dental insurance,and a divorce….
I quit quit gardening.I quit baking bread.
But,then I retired!
Not to mention those 2 children are on their own,I no longer wear granny glasses(bifocals,now),or Mexican wedding dresses.
Now,I’m wearing shorts and flip-flops.And my bifocals.
And gardening,organically,again.
So,today,when I was almost out of bread,I thought,”Why not make your own?You have the stuff,the time.Why not?”
So,I did.
Not in a bread machine.But the old-fashioned,hippie way.
Actually,more of the next generation way.I found an easy,no-knead recipe on the web….

Basic White Bread

Makes 3  loaves:

3 cups lukewarm water
1 1⁄2 tbsp granulated yeast (1 1⁄2 packets)
1 1⁄2 tbsp coarse kosher or sea salt
6 1⁄2 cups unsifted, unbleached, all-purpose white flour
Cornmeal for pizza peel

Preheat oven to 400 f.

Add 1 1⁄2 Tbsp. yeast to bowl.  Add 1 1⁄2 Tbsp.  salt.  Add  3 cups water.  Add 6 1⁄2 cups flour.

Stir the mixture until it’s thickened and well combined.  Cover bowl with tea towel.  Allow to rise for 2 hours.

Once the dough has risen divide it into 3.  Form each section into a ball and pull the 4 sides of the dough to the underneath.   This is stretching out the gluten and aligning it.  It also gives you a nice tight top to the bread.

Leave the dough for its final proof on a very well floured couche,or tea towel for 45 minutes.  Cover with  couche or gently cover with a light, floured tea towel.

After it’s proved, gently transfer to your peel or baking tray/stone.  Cut several slashes across the top.  This allows the bread to move upwards as opposed to sideways when it bakes.

Bake until the interior temperature of the bread is 190 f.  (around 25 minutes).

I didn’t use a couche.I did it my mother’s way:A floured,linen tea towel.
Because the AC is running,I set mine outside,in the sun to rise
….just like I did in my hippie phase….

The only problem with baking your own bread is:
You eat it!

Pickled Tiny Tomatoes……

The spring veggie garden had a bumper crop of “Moby Grape” tomatoes.and the Roma’s were underwhelming(I think it got too hot,too soon for them),and they are kind of on the smallish side. The question was what to do with them? They’re not big enough for a good tomato sandwich and how many can you snack on?
Enter the June issue of Southern Living magazine
.Right there!
On page 124 was a recipe for Pickled Tiny Tomatoes.
I’m in with that!

Pickled Tiny Tomatoes
What you need…..

3 pt.assorted grape tomatoes
2  C seasoned rice vinegar
3 T sugar
3 garlic cloves,thinly sliced
1 T pickling spice
1T kosher salt
1 (1/2 in.) piece fresh ginger,peeled and sliced(optional-I used it)
Pierce each tomato with a wooden skewer and place in a large glass bowl.Bring vinegar and next 4 ingredients,and ginger if using,and 1 and 1/2 C water to a boil.Remove from heat and pour over tomatoes.Cool 1 hr.Cover and chill 24 hrs. before serving.Refrigerate in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.

Serve with a meat-and-cheese platter,or garnish a cocktail.Or just snack on ‘em straight from the refrigerator!
I think this just might work with cucumbers,too.

Now,don’t complain if you have a bumper crop of tomatoes and don’t know what to do with them.At least I did my part to keep you informed….

Original recipe here…..