Skye’s Deviled Eggs

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Our eight year old  granddaughter, Skye, made lunch for her Papa Joe yesterday – Deviled Eggs, her own recipe. This is the way she declares is best!

                                               Deviled Eggs

1.  Buy large brown eggs.

2. Bring 4 eggs to a boil.  Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit for 12 minutes.

3. Drain, add cool water to pot and let cool long enough to peel.

4. Peel eggs, cut them in half long ways, and take out the yolk without breaking the rest of the egg.

5.  Add 1/3 cup mayonnaise with olive oil to yolks in a bowl.

6  Mash together with a fork.

7.  Add a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper and mash again.

8.  Use a teaspoon to move the filling into the egg whites.

9.  Enjoy!

Taking the Heat, Hatch Chile Rellenos

       Record drought and heat is the story for our Texas summer!  We pulled up the tomato plants that had stopped producing when temperatures soared to make way for fall garden planting.  A few weeks ago we put in a half dozen new plants that are struggling even with extra water and bandana coverings for shade.  The peppers are a different story.  It is if they just now picked up speed.  I have Big Bertha (yellow) and  Purple Beauty, Gypsy and Garden Salsa and Tobasco.  They are plucky and heat defiant.  I have been getting peppers in our CSA share as well which introduced us to a new heirloom variety,  named after Mt. Aconcagua in Argentina. Aconcagua are hearty, grow to amazing lengths,are delicious stuffed, and add flavor to many vegetable dishes and sauces.  Late August is also the  time for Hatch Chile Peppers from New Mexico to appear in our supermarkets.  Every year I find  new recipes to try with their heat.  Hatch Chile Rellenos is my favorite.   I already have the peppers ready to roast and fill with goat cheese, pine nuts, and raisins!

 Hatch Chile Rellenos

8-10 large Hatch chile peppers, roasted, stemmed, seeded, and sliced lengthwise 

9 ounces goat cheese

3 ounces raisins.

2 ounces pine nuts, lightly toasted 

sea salt, to taste 

1 cup Crema Mexicana 

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

 Combine goat cheese, raisins, and pine nuts with a sprinkle of sea salt.  Lay the peppers in baking pan, stuff with cheese mixture.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.

 In a small pan, heat the crema Mexicana over LOW heat until it is warm.  Drizzle chiles with warm crema. Garnish with cilantro and serve.

Strawberry Jam with Rosemary and Black Pepper

Maddie and Skye went out to Froberg Farms and helped me pick strawberries last year.  They were best eaten immediately, but of course we picked way more than we immediately used, so several pint bags went into the freezer.  This morning I decided to make preserves with them, because Joe likes strawberry preserves.  He always says his mother made wonderful strawberry preserves.  This time I didn’t even try to make them like she did.  I picked several sprigs of fresh rosemary from my herb garden to chop finely, ground black pepper on top, and the lemon and small amount of sugar were all that was needed more than all my frozen strawberries  As they bubble in the pot (2 pots, actually as I had 8 pints of berries), I wish the little girls were here to help me stir.

  • 4 pints fresh (best) strawberries – I used frozen this time 
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  •  Juice of 1 large or 2 small lemons
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped rosemary

Put all ingredients in soup pot or Dutch oven,  and stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Then lower heat toand simmer about 30 minutes. Cook until thickened. Pour into pint jars and refrigerate for up to two weeks.  Wonderful on waffles or as a spread for toast or scones.  Also good on Blue Bell ice cream!. 

Crown Roast

 Since the only time I ever made this was in 1963, there is no photo to feed your eyes first and tempt your taste buds.  In fact, I have never seen this dish or a picture of it anywhere else.  Its claim to fame must lie in that fact that one time was enough!

                                                         Crown Roast

The very words of the title may set the table for you:  lovely linens, coordinated crystal, china, and flatware, tasteful flowers and candles.  Whether you are thinking “succulent crown roast of pork, stuffed with apples, herbs and onions” “crown roast of beef with potatoes and horseradish cream” or “elegant, stunning, and mouth-watering”, it would be easy to think of the holiday meal or dinner for guests where such a dish would appear.

 Let me take you instead to the very earliest days of my marriage to show you the table setting for this Crown Roast.  In 1963 as I was learning how much I loved the man I would marry just after Christmas, I owned 2 cookbooks, the first of over 100 in my current collection.  My sister’s high school home economics sold them so I bought Favorite Recipes of Home Economics Teachers MEATS as well as one for DESSERTS, both wonderful collections of women who taught cooking all over the U.S. which included all the basics inexperienced cooks would need to use the recipes. I developed the habit of looking for a recipe requiring ingredients I already had.  This became a valuable tool for a new bride on a tight budget.  I made menus for 2 weeks at a time, grocery shopped for only what I needed, and if the need exceeded the cash I carried, it was no longer a need, but a “next time” on the list.

 The Christmas bride settled into busy life with school and work. We moved into a tiny 2 bedroom rent house in southern Oklahoma City. It was furnished with overused items (no, not shabby chic), but it had a small fenced yard, and it was home.  We painted the walls, stacked books under the sofa to correct the sag, hung curtains from Kmart, added personal touches from wedding gifts, and our cat, Pepper.

 Not always to my credit, I managed to make our budget stretch by the old adage “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”  Let’s say that occasionally that led to unusual items on our menu.  One spring evening, Joe came home to find me with a large eyed needle and kitchen cord, threading hot dogs like beads.  My new husband laughed with me, not batting an eye, and sat down at our Formica topped table for dinner.  My featured special for the meal?  Crown Roast of WEINERS, stuffed with Sauerkraut.  We have never made the dish again, but we have told the story over and over.

You will need:

       16 wieners

       2 Tablespoons chopped onions

       4  Slices bacon, diced

       1 can (21/2) sauerkraut

       1 cups  cooked potatoes, cubed

        ¼ cup melted butter or margarine

        ¼ cup chopped parsley

 Run a string through wieners 1 inch from the top and another 1 inch from bottom.  Tie together forming a circle and stand up on heat resistant platter.  Sauté onion and diced bacon in skillet.  Place sauerkraut inside of wiener ring and top with onion and bacon mixture.  Dip potatoes in melted butter, roll in parsley, and place around wieners.  Cover entire platter with aluminum foil.  Bake in 350 oven for 45 minutes.  Hot potato salad is very good placed inside of crown roast instead of potatoes and sauerkraut.                  ~This recipe is attributed to Clara E. Dalton, Piute H.S., Junction, Utah.  When choosing it from the Convenience foods section of the cookbook, I passed up the chance to make Spam Stroganoff!

Pot Luck? Bring Bok Choy Salad.

There are a special few kitchen creations that have made it into the Potluck Hall of Fame.  You know, the ones people ask for, the ones people link your name to with approval.  Once, I didn’t even know what Bok Choy was.  Now I gladly grow it in my garden.  The dark green unfolding leaves fan out and stand in stark contrast to the stark white stems, a gratifying success to the vegetable gardener.  Bok Choy Salad first showed up on our family table after I saw a recipe in a Southern Living magazine years ago.  It has never failed to be a hit when I make it to share.  This recipe makes a large amount.  Any combination of nuts and seeds can be toasted for the crunch topping.    One important tip:  Unless you are planning for the whole salad to be eaten at one meal, put the chopped Bok Choy and green onions in a large ziplock bag, and serve individual portions with toppings and dressing added at the last minute.  That way all ingredients stay fresh for another couple of days.  Dressed Bok Choy, like most salads, tends to be soggy the next day, although still tasty.

                                                          Bok Choy Salad                        serves 10

                                        2 packages ramen noodle mix.  (I discard the seasoning                                                        packs, so flavor is not really important.)

                                        1/2 cup sliced almonds

                                         1/2 cup sunflower seeds

                                          3 Tablespoons sesame seeds

                                           1/2 cup sugar (try substituting honey or agave nectar)

                                           1/4 cup cider vinegar

                                            2 Tablespoons soy sauce

                                             1 Bok Choy, chopped fine

                                              6 green onions, chopped

Crumble noodles (discard flavor packs).  Combine noodles, almonds, and sesame seeds.  Spread on baking pan and bake at 350 for 10 minutes or until golden.

Bring sugar, oil, vinegar, and soy sauce to a boil in a small pan.  Allow to cool.

Toss bok choy and onions in a large bowl with cooled dressing, top with toasted noodle mixture.  Serve immediately.