Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Harbor Cruise in Charleston

A few months ago we lost a very dear friend...David Singleton was a person so full of life that I guess that God just needed to have him back in heaven.  He was in our church foyer group, I know I have written sometime in the past about the foyer dinners and least I think I have.  Tomorrow we go on the our end of the year foyer group cruise and it is dedicated to David. 

David in one of his conservative outfits

So in memory of David I am bring one of his favorite foods Ms. Hamby's Shrimp Salad Sandwiches.  Now sadly the Piggly Wiggly has closed so I can no longer get the official bread of these yummy morsels so I am hoping that the Harris Teeter White bread does the trick.

If you live in the Charleston SC area (hint JuJu) and would like to have a great time for just $15 come join us at the aquarium marina departing at 6:30 tomorrow night.  We are Episcopal so there is lots of food and drink included for that small price.....

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Sick Hubby and Chicken Soup

My husband has a those of you living with someone else (of the male persuasion) you know what life is like at our house.  Lots of moans, groans and grumbles.  Of course he wants to be left alone (supposedly) but has been making numerous trips to the fridge looking for something to eat.

It was time for me to spring into action this morning with a pot of home-made chicken and rice soup.  I didn't have any chicken stock in the freezer but fortunately there was a left over chicken with its bones in the freezer so that was the start for our stock although I also added two legs and thighs so we had more meat afterwards in the soup. The whole thing took about 5 hours of simmering and you really don't have to do much but the end result is so rewarding!  I keep left over rice in the freezer in zip-lock bags so that saved even more labor.  You could also put egg noodles this if you prefer!

Chicken Soup

1 chicken carcass
2 chicken legs and thighs
4-5 carrots
4 celery ribs
12 cups water
1 large onion, peeled and rough cut
2 cups cooked rice
Salt and pepper to taste

Place the chicken, 2 carrots (unpeeled and rough chopped), 2 celery ribs (rough chopped), onion and the water in a large pot.  Place on a high heat and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer about 2 hours (if you notice the chicken falling apart you are done).

Drain the stock from the pot, reserving the legs and thighs and discarding the bones and veggies.  Place the stock back in the pot, peel and chop the carrots and chop the celery and add to the stock.  Once the chicken is cool enough to handle break up the meat and add back to the stock (I do not add the skin back in).  Season with salt and pepper, bring back to a boil then reduce to a simmer and  add the cooked rice.  It is ready to eat when the carrots are tender.


To drain the stock I put a colander into my largest bowl and carefully pour the stock in.  This takes care of separating the meat from the stock with a lot less mess, I just pulled the legs and thighs out and put them to the side so they could cool enough to be handled.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Mom's Sauerbraten with Potato Balls Recipe!

Just in case you wondered what my Potato Ricer looked like! (even though this isn't my picture)

Just in case you feel adventurous here is the recipe!


4lb boneless chuck roast (do not use an expensive cut for this)
1/4 box old fashioned Gingersnaps crushed
White Vinegar
5lbs Potatoes (my original copy specifies Long Island Potatoes but you would be best Googling to see what they suggest)
1 egg
1 Tbs Shortening (I use butter)
Place meat in a deep pot, fill half way with vinegar and then add water until meat is covered.  Refrigerate over night.

Early the next morning peel and cook the potatoes then using your ricer (don't have one?  No time like the present).  Let the potatoes cool.

Take the meat out of the marinade reserving 2 cups add the gingersnaps to this and let dissolve.  Melt the shortening in a dutch oven then brown the onion and the meat.  Pour the rest of the marinade (not the stuff with the gingersnaps in it) over meat than add enough water to cover the meat.  Cover the pot and simmer for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

Bring large pot of water to boil.  Add the egg to the potatoes and then start adding the flour.  You need enough flour so the balls stay together (Mom would get it the way she liked it, drop one into the water and see what happened).  You may need to add more flour so be prepared.  Do not over crowd the pot, when they rise to the top carefully scoop them out.

Remove the meat from the pot and set aside.  Add the gingersnap mixture to the water over a medium heat and stir until thickened.

I think you can figure out the rest!




sauerbraten-von-aldi18.jpg (448×336)

The first meeting of each month our Elk's Lodge has a social hour and this month's theme is Oktoberfest!  Each one of brings a dish to share with the group.  My fathers grandparents were both born in Germany and passed along some of the food traditions that they grew up with and of course getting these recipes out of my grandmother and aunt was like pulling teeth!  I will never understand why people don't want to share the wealth but perhaps it is that little part of the world they have cornered and they don't want anyone else treading on it!

There are a few things that take me back to my childhood, one of them is poppy seed rolls (the aunt never did share this recipe) and the other is Sauerbraten mit Gaduflglasen (roughly translated sour meat with potato balls) which she did share.

My mother (who had not a lick of German in her) made a mean Sauerbraten and would always serve it while I was pregnant the day before I had to go to the Ob/Gyn for my monthly weigh in. This is far from a light meal but it is absolutely delicious (even though it sounds yucky).  You marinade the beef roast for three days in vinegar and spices than simmer it and make a killer gravy using ginger snaps to thicken the sauce.  The potato balls are a bit need just the right type of potatoes or the balls commit potato-acide in the boiling water...even with the right moisture level in the tater I honestly think you need to have a certain amount of starch (also known as potato balls) in the water before the rest decide it's okay to cook and then rise to the top where you carefully scoop them out.  All this is even better as left overs...and you all know how much I love gravy.  Mom would cut the potato balls in half, fry them in butter and serve them up with the meat, gravy and pickled red cabbage...can you say delicious???

So the long and the short of this story (I bet you were wondering) is what do I make for Tuesday night and non-experimental, boring eating Elks?  Someone else has taken the easy way out and is doing the brats...that doesn't leave much other than German Potato Salad, Apple Strudel or what ever else I can find on the Internet....

Friday, October 4, 2013


It's hard getting started again after you have stopped for a while....especially if you are in a cooking slump!  There have been some pretty good meals, some new things tried, experiences I should have shared but...I need a good swift kick in the tuckus to get going again!

We had one of the daughters staying with us for many months and it really affects your life.  It's not like when they are little and you can tell them what to do's tough.  When the two of you plus the dog becomes the three of you plus the dog, when you can't walk around the house without clothes on or have some fun on the couch.  When you are trying to cheer on someone who is unable to be cheered on, or motivate someone who cannot deal with motivation.  We both love our daughters but I think we love them more from a distance, the daughter probably feels the same way.  It has got to be tough to wind up as an adult back at home where your parents still sort of see you as a kid even though you aren't.  When you can't get yourself back together and everything feels like it is falling apart.  Telling her she needed to move on was the toughest thing I have ever done in my life...I love her with my whole heart but...I cannot live with her.  We are too different.

Slowly we are putting our simple life back together again and I hope and pray that she is too.

Love you Oh Daughter Of Mine...

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Baked Red Mashed Potatoes

Sunday night I was baking sweet potatoes for dinner but really had a hankering for mashed potatoes.  I didn't feel like peeling the little red taters and boiling them so off to the Internet I went.  No where could I find a recipe for baked mashed red potatoes so...being the brave soul I am an experiment was called for.

This was as about as easy as it comes, it would probably work better in the winter months when you don't mind having the oven on.  All it takes is scrubbing the potatoes and bake them in a 350 degree oven until they are fork tender.  Place them in a bowl and smush them with a potato masher.  After they are sort of smushed I use the electric mixer along with some milk or yogurt and butter then mix them together until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste and you are finished!

Michael said it tasted like baked potatoes but better and it was far from labor intensive!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

This is only a test...

The youngest daughter is an excellent cook and one of her specialties is Roast Lamb...mmmmm.  In celebration of my up coming birthday she brought me some of the left overs from last night (not sure how that rates in birthday gifts but this one is very, very tasty). 

So there we go, the meat is all set for dinner tonight now to decide what to make with it...

In the oven already there are sweet potatoes baking away but I have a taste for mashed red potatoes....tonight's test is, can you mash baked red potatoes with the skin on?

Details to follow.....