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Grilled Birds, Smashed Potatoes and Burgundy Mushrooms

A few weeks ago I posted this to my Facebook page and neglected to share it with you.  So here goes…

The weather was still in the 3 digits and using the oven to heat the house didn’t sound too good but I had come across a recipe that I couldn’t ignore.

I follow The Pioneer Woman Cooks who had posted a recipe for Burgundy Mushrooms.  Now if you like mushrooms you have to admit these sound more than tempting.

Off the the grocer I went to pick up 2lbs of button mushrooms, pulled 2 gamebirds from the freezer and dug around in the pantry for some potatoes.

We grilled the gamebirds and smashed the potatoes with lots of garlic and olive oil.  The resulting dinner was amazing and thanks to The Pioneer Woman Cooks, Chef Michael Chiarello and Hunter Angler Gardener Cook it was a feast worthy of a blog post!

The internet is truly amazing!  I can find any recipe to fit any desired result.  There’s such an abundance of free information and so many great chefs and cooks out there that are gracious enough to share their secrets with us.  No wonder we are on perpetual diets.

Now my daughter has requested that I post something original the next time I get a chance.  As I think about it… is there anything new under the sun?  Maybe.  I’ve been working on perfecting some javelina recipes.. could be our next adventure.

Pr 25:21 If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

A couple of summers ago I wrote a post about gardening and in it mentioned , “teaching your children and remembering Who it is that has provided the bounty on your plate!”

Pictured above is my oldest daughter, who posted the photo on her facebook album. She reminded me of the impact we can have on our children while they are growing up and how important it is to pass on the things that are most important in life.  Her “sense of adventure” and being a “berry picker” are, apparently, a result of my example.

The truth is these qualities were passed on to me by my parents who took my older sister and I camping, made us work in the home garden and picked wild berries on the side of the road with us, not to mention a number of other things that have stuck with me into my 50’s.

I learned from my parents to keep an eye out for wild critters and learned to spot a deer when most folks would miss it.  I count and track the birds that come and go each year in my back yard.  Even begging my husband to stop on the side of the road so I could enjoy the multitude of wild flowers in the spring was a result of parental guidance.

The things we pass on to our children can last into eternity… It’s up to us to choose what it is that they will live with forever.  Teach them rightly and they will live rightly.  Teach them evil and they will reap the consequences.

There is no greater joy than knowing your children have taken on the heritage you’ve handed down to them.  The next best thing is watching them share it with their children and others.

2 Timothy 1:5 I remember your true faith. That faith first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice, and I know you now have that same faith.

I started making these precious little crochet caps especially for babies in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at a local hospital.

For every item sold at my ebay and Etsy stores ONE PREEMIE CAP IS DONATED for a premature baby.

A packet containing a scripture card and a crocheted cap can bring warmth for a preemie and love to a family who finds themselves in a fearful time.

I’m so blessed to be able to offer such a simple gift for such an important cause.

And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’
Matthew 25:40

homemade air freshener

homemade air freshener

Over the past few years I’ve noticed that I have become more and more sensitive to a number of things including fragrances and air fresheners.  After reading some of the contents on various air freshener labels I’ve noticed there are essentially two kinds, air fresheners with gobs of stuff I cant pronounce and air fresheners with the simplest list of ingredients; alcohol, water and essential oils.

I have come to greatly appreciate the latter.  One type in particlular stands out in my mind as simple and amazing in it’s ability to freshen the air quickly and pleasently.  I’ve considered trying to reproduce it and have come up with a recipe I think will ease the minds of most indoor air-pollution consious persons.

Ingredience:

  • 6 oz  distilled water
  • several drops of essential oil (citrus, peppermint, lavender, etc)
  • 1 oz  alcohol (rubbing, vodka, gin etc)

Use a good misting style trigger spay bottle, shake and spritz away!

photo: Not Dabbling in Normal

In the beginning God created the….

Ok so I wont go that far back but I will ask you to think about what it would have been like to be in the kitchen a couple hundred years ago.  What items would have been in the ordinary pantry?  How simple would the ingredients have been back then?  Raw, unprocessed foods were the supplies in the kitchen except for some things like sugar, flour and maybe a few other simple cooking and baking ingredients we take for granted today.

Simpler times meant simpler ingredients and it was cost effective.  Today, we face the dilemma of trying to decide which can of soup is the healthiest without loosing all that flavor or which boxed cake is the easiest while still light and moist.  Plus, we could save a bundle if we think simple foods and avoid the center of the grocery store and probably be healthier for it too.

I was reminded, this morning, of those simpler times at Not Dabbling in Normal. This sight is full of simpler times, eating real food and growing your own.  Today, Baking Powder is the topic.  Have you ever made your own?  Did  you know you could?… It never even crossed my mind.  Surprise!  Simpler is putting it lightly.  I figured it’s like lots of other stuff that requires special ingredients an ordinary cook doesn’t have access to.

If you want to simplify your kitchen, save a little for the cookie jar, are going back to basics or just want to experience a new thing, try making  your own Baking Powder.  Visit Not Dabbling in Normal and see how simple it really is.  You wont believe your eyes!

Grilled Chocolate Ribeye Steaks

A few years ago I made a cooking blunder that turned out to be a major AHA! in my cooking experiences.  You know, a recipe error that turns out to be a good thing?  Like in that peanut butter cup commercial?  “You got chocolate on my peanut butter!”  …. “No, you got peanut butter on my chocolate!”

The plan was to make some BBQ Ribs with this spice rub from a cookbook.  I had mixed a spice rub up a few weeks earlier for another meal and the unused portion was packed away.  The problem was that when I was prepping the ribs, sprinkling  spice rub on them, I realized something was wrong.  It wasn’t spice rub at all….. it was … chocolate?

Yep, I had on another occasion way, way back, taken some stale chocolate biscotti and ground it to a crumbly sprinkle for ice cream and I had put it in the same kind of container as the spice rub.  Foolish me didn’t label them and now I was in a pickle with chocolate biscotti sprinkles on my beef ribs.

“So,” I think to myself, “my husband and I both like chocolate.  Maybe if I rub it off and put enough spice rub on he wont notice.” So that’s what I did and the ribs were wonderful!

Since that day I’ve recreated that great bbq taste and presented it to the twisted brow of a few folks who agree it’s great.  Now I’ll share my little secret with you. Enjoy!

Chocolate Ribeye Steaks

1/3 c packed dark brown sugar
2 Tbls onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
3 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbls fresh ground black pepper
4 Tbls paprika
3 ground chocolate biscotti (I used my food processor)

Ribeye Steaks

Mix all dry ingredients together.  Sprinkle on both sides of your perfect steak, “marinate” for about 30 minutes and grill to your desired result.  I like mine rare.

Store left over Chocolate Spice Rub in an airtight container.  Stays fresh for an extended time in the freezer.  Oh, and don’t forget to put a label on it.  🙂