Monthly Archives: August 2012

Peanut Butter Cookies

It’s cookie time again!  I keep cookies made to put in My Honey’s lunch for work, so every so often I have to make a batch.  This time, I made plain and simple peanut butter cookies.  I got this particular recipe from a local cookbook:  Second Edition Plumerville Homecoming Cookbook.  This particular recipe was submitted by a lady named Opal Shaver Savage.

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Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky)
  • 1 1/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda

Directions:

  1. Combine peanut butter, brown sugar, milk, and vanilla in a large bowl.  Beat at medium speed until blended.
  2. Add egg; beat until blended.
  3. Combine flour and baking soda; add to creamed mixture at low speed.
  4. Mix until blended.
  5. All of the flour may not be needed, so add gradually until a smooth mixture is obtained.*
  6. Roll into quarter-size balls and place on ungreased baking sheet.  Flatten with tines of fork.
  7. Bake at 375-degrees for 7-8 minutes or until set.  Watch carefully as cookies will brown easily.

*Note:  I used the whole 1 1/2 cups of flour.

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French Bread Pizza

After seeing it on TV, the internet, and even the occassional cook book, I decided that tonight, my husband and I would have French Bread pizza for supper.  My Honey wants to have pizza, and I want to try this idea.  Seems like a win-win, a very simple win-win.  I like it when things are simple.  Now, since I’m just trying out this idea for the first time, I just bought a loaf of French bread at the grocery store.  (Besides, it’s hard to beat bread for a buck – seriously.)  If it turns out to be something that we like a lot, I will probably try making the bread next time.  I’ve found a couple of recipes on the internet that look fairly simple, but that just might be another post.  😀

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Ingredients:

  • 1 loaf of French bread, halved down the middle
  • 1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. tomato paste
  • 4 tbsp. spreadable butter
  • 2 1/2 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 2 1/2 tbsp. Italian seasoning
  • toppings of your choice
  • 2 tbsp. parmesan cheese
  • 2-4 cups mozzarella cheese

Directions:

  1. Slice the bread in half, long-ways.
  2. Spread about 2 tbsp. of butter on each side of bread.
  3. Sprinkle about 1 tbsp. of garic powder and Italian seasoning on each side of bread.
  4. Place on a large cookie sheet or pizza pan, and broil until bread is toasted and butter is melted (just a couple of minutes – watch closely!).
  5. In a saucepan combine tomato sauce, tomato paste, and the remaining half a tbsp. of garlic powder and Italian seasoning.  Heat and mix until sauce, seasonings, and paste are well-combined.
  6. Spread sauce on toasted bread.  Only what is necessary or to your taste.  You do not want to make the bread soggy.
  7. Place toppings on top of the sauce.
  8. Sprinkle each side of bread with about 1 tbsp. of parmesan cheese.
  9. Cover each side of bread with 1-2 cups of mozzarella cheese.
  10. Place in broiler again just long enough to melt the cheese.  (Just a couple of minutes.)

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Dinner Rolls

There is a reason why so many family restaurants serve endless rolls to their customers:  People love fresh, warm rolls to munch on with their supper and as an appetizer.  Rolls are so soft and fluffy on the inside, crusty on the outside, and warm.  The scent of fresh bread reminds of good things.  Mmmm!

It’s been awhile since I made fresh bread (thanks to the record heat this summer), and I have been wanting to do some baking lately.  I thought about doing biscuits, but decided that it since it wasn’t as hot today, that I would do rolls to go with supper.  It will be a nice surprise for my husband.  He’s a big fan of rolls.  His mama makes some really good ones!  This isn’t her recipe, but it’s not a bad one.  It came from my Better Homes and Gardens Our Best Recipes cook book.  I have apparently made it before, but it must have been awhile because I don’t remember it.  Anyway, I know I’ve made it before because there are little spatter spots on the page.  Being a book-lover, I’m always extra careful with books, but I feel like a cook book is kinda like a Bible:  The used ones are well broke-in with bent pages, writing and highlighting, and (for cook books) batter splatters.  So, if you have a cook book that is falling apart and messy, be proud that you use it.  I hope you got duck tape on your Bible, too.  That’s even more important than a well-used cook book.  😉

Anyway, you’re waiting for the roll recipe, so I won’t keep any longer.

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Ingredients:

  • 3 1/4 to 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pkg. active dry yeast
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter or shortening (I used butter.)
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, stir together 1 1/4 cups of the flour and the yeast.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat and stir milk, sugar, butter, and salt just until warm (120-130 degrees) and butter almost melts.
  3. Beat egg with a fork.
  4. Add milk mixture to flour mixture along with egg.  Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for about 30 seconds, scraping the sides of the bowl constantly.  Beat on high speed for 3 minutes.
  5. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.
  6. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
  7. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic (6-8 minutes total).
  8. Shape dough into a ball.
  9. Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning dough once to grease surface.  Cover; let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
  10. Punch down dough.  Turn out onto a lightly floured surface.
  11. Divide dough in half.  Cover; let rest for 10 minutes.
  12. Meanwhile, lightly grease a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan.*
  13. Shape dough into 24 balls.  Place balls in prepared pan.
  14. Cover and let rise until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes).
  15. Preheat oven to 375-degrees.  Bake for 15-18 minutes or until rolls sound hollow when lightly tapped.
  16. Immediately remove rolls from pan.  Cool on wire racks.

*Note:  I used a 9 x 13 pan and a 9-inch quiche pan.  I only got 15 rolls in the 9 x 13 pan.

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Old-Fashioned Basic Cream Pie

As much as I enjoy cooking, it is always nice to have recipes that are easy to whip up and that require just a few ingredients.  This recipe is one of them.  It’s a recipe I learned from my daddy and step-mom as I was growing up.  My daddy and I even have an on-going “argument” about what this particular dessert is called.  I always called it “cheesecake,” but he insists it’s called “cream pie.”  Because I’m a little older and know more about foods than I once did, I do realize that this is not a cheesecake (You don’t bake it.), but for old time’s sake, I still will call it that, at least when I’m talking to Daddy.  For the sake of you knowing what you’re getting into, however, I will call it a cream pie because to be honest, that’s what it is.  I love you, Daddy!  😀

Anyway, as I was saying, this is a very easy recipe, though, it does require several hours in the fridge to get it chilled.  And now, without further ado, I shall impart the recipe to you.  Enjoy!

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Ingredients:

  • 3 pkg. cream cheese
  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk (Eagle Brand Milk, as you may know it)
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • Graham cracker crust

Crust Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 sleeves crackers
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter, melted

Directions:

  1. Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl until creamy.
  2. Add sweetened condensed milk and lemon juice and mix well.
  3. Pour into 9×13 baking dish with crust.
  4. Chill for several hours or overnight.

Crust Directions:

  1. Finely crush graham crackers.  Dump crumbs into a 9×13 baking dish and make a well.
  2. Melt butter in microwave.
  3. Pour butter into well of crumbs.
  4. Mix with hands to moisten all the crumbs and press the crust onto bottom and sides of baking dish.
  5. Place in freezer to harden while you mix the pie filling.

Topping Ideas:

  • Fruit pie filling (cherry, blueberry, etc.)
  • Oreo crumbs
  • Anything else that suits your fancy

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Sweet Tea

Sweet tea is the beverage of the South.  Cold, sweet, and oh so good!  Mmm!  There’s nothing like it.  When I was a kid, we drank tea all the time.  I remember we had this big, circular jug with a red Tupperware-type top that had a lidded hole for pouring, and when my mama made tea, that’s what she put it in.  That was a long time ago.  That particular jug became a casualty of a house fire later on, but that’s not the point of this post.

I drank tea a lot when I was little, but when I got in the seventh grade, I had to take a health class.  In that class, we learned how good water is for the body, and I decided to start drinking just water and milk.  By then both my dad and step-mom were drinking primarily water, so I just joined them.  And for years, water and milk are pretty much all I drank.  Every now and then I would drink a coke or some juice if I couldn’t get water, but I no longer drank tea.  Then about year and a half ago something happened:  I started craving sweet tea.  I hadn’t had tea since I was about 11 or 12 years old, but at 25, I wanted some.  I couldn’t even remember how to make any.  I bought some at McDonald’s because I had heard rave reviews of it, which turned out to be true, by the way, but I was still wanting some.  So, I did what every tea-craving girl would do when she needed to learn how to make it:  ask her tea drinking sisters.  That’s exactly what I did, and ever since, I almost always have tea in the fridge.  I do try to keep my intake of tea down to one glass-ful a day, especially now that I’m pregnant, but that one glass is welcomed every time.  😀

Now, you may not need a tea recipe, but for those of you who do need one, here is a simple, basic sweet tea recipe.  It’s pretty hard to mess up making tea (but not impossible because I’ve done it before), and it’s mostly whatever suits your taste buds.  This is just what I do, based on how my sisters told to make it and a few things I’ve just added from other ideas I’ve heard.  So brew yourself up a glass, sit on the front porch swing, and watch the clouds roll in.  May those clouds bring you some much needed rain!

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Ingredients:

  • 4 family-size (large) tea bags (I use Lipton Iced Tea bags.)
  • 2-3 cups water for brewing
  • Just over 1 cup sugar, about 1 1/8 cups
  • More water to make a gallon of tea

Directions:

  1. In a medium metal saucepan (not tephlon), put water and tea bags.
  2. Boil on high for several minutes, until the tea bags are all puffy with air and the surface of the liquid is frothy.  (The pan will be on the stove for about 5-8 minutes.)
  3. While the tea is boiling, put sugar in a gallon-size pitcher.
  4. Take tea off the stove, and pour liquid into the pitcher.  Hold the tea bags back with a spoon.
  5. Fill the pitcher with water by running water over the tea bags in the pan and pouring into the pitcher.  Do this repeatedly until the pitcher is full.
  6. Squeeze excess liquid from the tea bags into the pitcher and discard the tea bags.
  7. Stir the tea in the pitcher until the sugar is dissolved.
  8. Set in the fridge to cool the tea.*
  9. Serve cold.

Flavoring Ideas:

  • lemon
  • peach
  • rasberry
  • mint

*Note:  If you are making the tea fresh, put a couple of trays of ice cubes into the pitcher before filling with water.  This will cool the tea for serving immediately.  The cubes will melt as you fill the pitcher up with water.

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