Æbelskiver!!!

Standard

Also spelled æbleskiver, if you’ve never heard of this, it’s a Danish/Scandinavian treat mostly made for breakfast and is popular around Christmas. It’s pronounced  A-bell-skii-ver and IT IS DELICIOUS! It’s sort of like a cross between a pancake and a popover.

Most Americans have never heard of it unless you live in the upper Midwest where loads of Scandinavians settled. My Nashville native husband had certainly never heard of them. I was usually only able to have them when we visited my Grandparents in Minnesota as you must have a special pan in which to cook them. They don’t sell a lot of these pans anywhere, but especially not in the South. My mom found a cast iron one in a country store several years ago and they didn’t even know what it was. 

Well, for my birthday this year, I finally got my own pan! I’m so excited to use it, especially since it’s Christmastime. I was going to make them this morning but, alas, no milk and only 1 egg. You can be assured we’ll be going to the store today so I can finally prepare them myself! Therefore, I leave you with pictures we took and the recipe we used when we last visited my MN Grandmother in May…

004

Here’s the tried and true, super easy, recipe my Grandmother uses (created by her sister, My Great-Aunt Norma):

006

Here’s how to turn them in the special pan (thanks for modeling the technique, mom):

001

Note, you can use a bamboo skewer, a knitting needle as mentioned in the recipe above, or a fondue fork (like she’s using in the picture) worked perfectly for us.

002

 

003

Trust me – they are wonderfully, light, little balls of deliciousness! You MUST give them a try, if you can find a pan or, you know, go to Denmark :)

Enjoy!

Jennifer

Henderson’s Meat Marinade

Standard

I got this recipe from an old neighbor of ours. He was a pretty good sized man which means you can trust his opinion on food! We use this for all kinds of meat – pork chops, chicken, anything really:

005

 

Ingredients:

  • BBQ sauce (plain ole regular kind is fine – you don’t need anything fancy [even though the label on the bottle above says “fancy])
  • Mustard
  • Dale’s Steak Seasoning sauce
  • dry Steak Seasoning mix

The amounts don’t need to be exact – you can mix however much you prefer but to get started the first time you may want to try 1/2 cup of each of the wet items and 1 tablespoon of the dry. I don’t even measure anymore – just eyeball about the same amount of all the wet items.

Warning – I don’t like yellow mustard. I mean I REALLY don’t like it. I don’t eat anything that’s made with it – except this. You can not tell it’s in there and you can’t taste it. Trust me on this one. Even if you don’t think it sounds good or don’t like it – try it as written first.

006

 

Pour everything into a small bowl.

007

Mix thoroughly. You want the bowl to be big enough to marinade the meat. If you are going to grill your meat, separate some of the mixture into a separate bowl that you can use to baste the meat while grilling.

002

Tonight, I used this on chicken and just browned it in a pan. It is so flavorful and moist! You should definitely give this one a try – it’s yummy!

Jennifer

Super Moist Stuffing

Standard

This is a super quick, super easy recipe. I actually stole it from the demonstrators at Costco. They were sampling it one day and I thought it was delicious! I’ve been making it this way ever since.

Now – be forewarned – this is NOT “dressing”. I’m not sure that there’s technically a difference between stuffing and dressing or if it’s just regional preference. That said, I personally think the Stove Top variety is stuffing and the homemade, cornbready type with celery hunks, and whatever else weird things people add, should be considered dressing. Now – if everyone would just follow those rules, that’d be great!

This is another recipe for a beginner cook or someone who has A LOT of things to cook, like on Thanksgiving, that you don’t have a lot of time to commit to a side dish but still want something good to feed guests. This recipe fits that bill:

008

Super Moist Stuffing

 Ingredients:

  • 2 cans chicken broth (28 oz total or about 3 & 1/2 cups)
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 sixteen oz. bag of stuffing mix

You can halve this recipe (like I did) and use one 6 oz. box of Stove Top Stuffing mix.  If you do that use 1 can of broth and 1/2 can of soup.

Directions:

005

 

 

1) In a medium saucepan, mix soup and broth together with a whisk. Heat until bubbly (not really boiling).

007010

 

 

2) Put breadcrumbs into a bowl.

009

 

 

3) Add hot soup mixture a little bit at a time to the breadcrumbs – mixing it well. It will be really moist as it will take 5-10 minutes to absorb all the liquid.

NOTE – If you’re using the 6 oz. Stove Top box you will NOT use all the soup mixture. I used most of it but had about 1/4 of a cup leftover.

011

 

Fluff with a fork and serve!

Since I don’t like the “cornbread dressing” type stuff – this is my absolute favorite stuffing. Again, nothing fancy but ooooohhh so good.

Enjoy!

Jennifer

Peg’s Scalloped Potatoes

Standard

My family has a tradition. Every Easter – you MUST have scalloped potatoes. It’s like a rule. It’s a rule so much that my sisters and I got into a “discussion” about it a few years ago.  It went like this:

Jennifer

Kelly had talked about mashed potatoes and gravy but there is no roasted meat with which to make gravy and we never have mashed potatoes and gravy at Easter. We always have mom’s home-made scalloped potatoes and I would like to specifically request that as it’s the only time of year I get it and I’m selfish. I can make mashed potatoes any old time.

Kelly

My oven will have a ham in it which is why I said Mashed potatoes and I was doing those and mac and cheese and mom is getting drinks. Don’t be changing the hostess’ menu chick’s…lol.

Michelle

I THINK THAT IT IS A LAW IN TENNESSEE (MAYBE AMERICA) THAT THE POTATOES MUST BE SCALLOPED FOR EASTER, I THINK IT IS THE WAY THAT JESUS HAD IT THE DAY HE WAS ARISEN.

I DON’T THINK WE WANT TO MESS WITH THE J’MAN…HE RULES MORE THAN WE CHICKS… :)

Kelly

Jesus fasted so we don’t need dinner at all. I have three freakin’ kinds of potatoes to make all parties happy so shut it!!!!!

Jennifer 

We do not need 3 kinds. We only need the scalloped kind.

Michelle

Jesus didn’t fast – he feasted! He feasted on scalloped potatoes!!!

She made scalloped :)

That said, I thought I’d share my mom’s scalloped potato recipe with everyone:

Peg’s Scalloped Potatoes

001

Note – the picture above is only for a HALF recipe – make sure you read the ingredient amounts!

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds potatoes – sliced or diced the same size (so they cook evenly)
  • 1/4  to 1/2 cup onion, depending on your taste – diced fine (can use jarred minced onion if you forget like I do sometimes)
  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 3 Tablespoons flour
  • 3 Tablespoons milk (if you use more or less make sure the flour is the same amount)
  • 1 & 1/2 Cups milk
  • Salt & pepper to taste (not pictured but it REALLY needs the salt so don’t skip it)

Directions:

1) Preheat oven to 350° F

002

2) Place diced potatoes in a greased (can use Pam) casserole dish. Make sure it’s plenty big as this has a tendency to bubble over. You can place a cookie sheet underneath to catch any drippings while it’s in the oven just in case your container is a little small.

Tip – I usually dice them as that’s the way my mom always did it. My dice is about the size of a dime – pretty small as that helps on the cooking time. We have prepared them with a mandolin slicer on the thinnest setting. That time they cooked way faster and were almost over-cooked. Be sure to test your tenderness while cooking as size affects the cooking time greatly!

004

3) Make a roux by placing butter and flour in a small pan on the stove over medium heat.

005

4) With a whisk, stir butter and flour together and cook for 2 – 3 minutes until caramel in color and smooth.  Cook it long enough to get the raw flour taste gone.

5) In a separate bowl, mix milk and cream of mushroom soup together with a whisk.

006

6) Add milk and soup mixture to the roux. Cook for several minutes and allow to thicken (this is what a roux is supposed to do).

7) Add salt and pepper to the soup mixture.

007

8) Once thickened, pour the entire mixture over the diced potatoes. Mix well.

9) Cover with a lid and bake for 90 to 120 minutes depending on how you’ve diced your potatoes. Remove the lid the last 30 minutes of baking to brown the top.

010

My smaller dime-sized diced cooked in about 80 minutes total – 60 minutes and then an additional 20 with the top off. The thinner you slice or the smaller you dice them will shorten the baking time.

These are a basic, easy-to-make, nothing fancy scalloped potato recipe that you can prepare for a whole horde of people (I made it for 20 this past Easter) that most people will like as there’s nothing weird (ie green) in them. If you wanted to get fancy then you could do scallions or green onions but – they’re pretty good as written.

Enjoy!!

Jennifer

A new post? Well, it has only been 2 years and 6 months :)

Standard

Anyone still here? Sorry for the long delay. Not sure what happened to us but we got in a non-writing funk and just kind of quit.  What’s been new with you?

Me? I’ve gotten on this quest to get rid of my two 3-inch 3-ring notebooks of recipes that reside on top of my microwave and gather dust.  Instead, I’ve decided to put everything on Pinterest. This way, I have access to my recipes anywhere on the planet. Clever, huh? The problem with this is my personal family recipes. It means I have to make all of them so I can Pin them.

So, I’d be expecting at least several new posts over the coming weeks. Today – I have TWO for you! Here we go!!

Jennifer

I Got Stung!

Standard

Yesterday, for the first time in probably 15 years and likely only the 3rd time in my life, I got stung by a wasp. I admit – I said some dirty words. It hurt!  I mean HURT, like really really H-U-R-T!  Hence the reason I said some rather unladylike things. Then, an interesting series of things occurred on my arm where the sting happened:

* Almost immediately following the sting you couldn’t really see anything. Don’t get me wrong – there was pain but nothing outwardly to show the world that I deserved sympathy.

* About 10 minutes later I started to get a welp that grew to the size of a dime.

* 20 minutes in and the welp started to be surrounded by a small red blotch.

* About 45 minutes after getting stung, the welp was gone but the blotchy red patch increased to a strip about 6 inches long.  And the strip was hot and very sore to the touch. I took a picture on my phone and sent it to my entire family hoping to garner some sympathy. My family couldn’t have cared less. Apparently there needs to be the presence of blood for my family to give me any special attention. Cold-hearted heathens!

* About 2 hours later there was nothing. No indication whatsoever that I should be pampered and coddled. Well pooh. If you’re going to get injured at least you should be able to milk it for something, darn it!

* My arm was sore all evening but all looked perfectly normal.

* This morning when I awoke – almost 20 hours after I got stung – I had a red patch back on my arm. Not blotchy this time but slightly red. Oh – there was also one other small difference – it ITCHED LIKE ALL GET OUT!!!  I’m not severely allergic so yesterday when Hubby asked me if I had taken any Benadryl I said no, I didn’t think there was any need.   I’ve changed my mind. There’s definitely need. Any there’s also annoyance. Why would it be itchy almost 24 hours later??? I’ve decided it’s just to annoy me.

Jennifer

P.S. The song “Hot for Teacher” just came on the radio. I think it’s been 20 years since I’ve heard this song but I still vividly remember the video. Does that show my age?

THE best shredded cheese

Standard

I’ve realized a lot of the recipes I prepare include cheese. This really shouldn’t be surprising as it’s one of my most favorite things on the planet. We’ve always got cheese in one or five different forms in the fridge. One of our usual staples was always grated cheddar – usually sharp cheddar because we’re all about loads of flavor.

A few months ago I read on Pioneer Woman to please grate your own cheese and don’t use the pregrated stuff from the grocery. I scoffed a little and wondered how much better could it really be? Cheese is pretty darn good as it is! I also had to consider the pain in the rear end that using a box grater is. Who wants to stand there and do that???

Well, enter the Barefoot Contessa – Ina Garten. On her show, she mentioned using the food processor to grate cheese as needed.

Well, this was something I could get behind! The lovely freshness of grating your own cheese mixed with the laziness of just pushing a button to accomplish it?  This has my name written all over it!  Here’s how it’s done:

First determine how much cheese you want to grate. If you need a specific amount, you can use a kitchen scale like this:

For my recipe I needed 8 ounces so I got out exactly what I needed.

Then, find the grater blade for the food processor. It will look like this:

Cut the cheese in chunks large enough to fit in the shoot but keep them as big as you can to make sure you are able to grate all the cheese. Shove it down the shoot and use the block press to smush it down to the blade while holding the pulse button, like this:

After about 15 seconds, you will end up with a lovely bowl of cheesy goodness:

YUMMY!!!  Now, we only buy block cheese which is WAY less expensive per pound than the pregrated stuff. And, Pioneer Woman was right. The texture is much more creamy and doesn’t have that “chalky” residue like pregrated stuff and the flavor is much more intense. I bet if you tried it you’ll never go back :)

Jennifer