Cranberry walnut bread

October 30th, 2015
by: Sue

Cranberry Walnut Bread
Yield: Makes 2 LoavesPrep Time: 3 hrsCook Time: 30 – 35 mins
A pretty holiday inspired bread that both freezes and toasts really well.

1/2 Teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
1 Cup Lukewarm water
2 Cups Unbleached, All-purpose Flour
3 1/2 Cups All-purpose Flour
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
2 Cups Water (Approximate)
1 Teaspoon Instant Yeast
1 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon
Zest From 1 Orange
1 1/2 Cups Dried Cranberries
1 1/2 Cups Chopped Walnuts

For the biga, Mix the yeast and water together, and then slowly start adding the flour, mixing well.
Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for up to 6 hours and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, take 1 cup of the biga (refrigerate rest for another project) and mix together with the flours, salt, cinnamon, orange zest, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl.
Begin to add water, stirring as you go and add as much water as is needed to bring everything together into a fairly firm dough.
Stir in the walnuts and cranberries, then dump the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 5 minutes until smooth.
Lightly oil a large bowl and then place the dough in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Let the dough rise in a warm place in your kitchen until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Punch down the dough and divide it into two equal pieces.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Share each ball of dough into an oval loaf and place each on a cornmeal dusted baking sheet.
Cover the loaves with a kitchen towel and let rest 30 minutes.
Cut three slashes into each loaf with a sharp knife and then bake until the internal temperature of the bread reaches 190 degrees F., about 35 minutes.
Cool to room temperature before slicing.

How to Cook Bacon Naked

September 12th, 2013
by: Blue

Yes, you read that right.  It is possible to cook bacon naked and better yet – do it SAFELY without putting the beans and franks and texas melons at risk.  It just so happens that it’s also the best method possible to cook delicious perfect fuss-free bacon.  Party naked!


Thick sliced bacon – you’re cooking naked with bacon.  Go for the thick meat here.  Don’t compromise, you won’t be happy with the results don’t ya know.


Get naked.  Place bacon in single layer on cookie sheet (make sure it’s a cookie sheet WITH edges as you want to contain the bacon grease).  Place pan in cold over (yes, a cold, not preheated oven) and set the oven temp to 400 degrees.  Check in 20 minutes to see if it’s done to your liking.

That is all, please be joyful in your naked bacon cooking.

Buttermilk cheddar biscuits

September 27th, 2011
by: Sue

I found this Ina Garten recipe on Food Network, and after reading a lot of reviews, modified it slightly, adding soda where Ina did not call for soda and decreasing the salt because the cheddar has a lot of sodium in it already. These are the best cheddar biscuits I’ve ever eaten!! It makes eight huge biscuits, but you can cut them smaller if you like. The square corners are nice and crunchy. You can eat these cold the next day they’re so good.

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 cup cold buttermilk, shaken (more if needed)
1 cold extra-large egg
1 cup grated extra-sharp Cheddar
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water or milk
Maldon sea salt, optional
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Place 2 cups of flour, the baking powder, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, add the butter and mix until the butter is the size of peas.

Combine the buttermilk and egg in a small measuring cup and beat lightly with a fork. With the mixer still on low, quickly add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture and mix only until moistened. In a small bowl, mix the Cheddar with small handful of flour and, with the mixer still on low, add the cheese to the dough. Mix only until roughly combined.

Dump out onto a well-floured board and knead lightly about 6 times. Roll the dough out to a rectangle 10 by 5 inches. With a sharp, floured knife, cut the dough lengthwise in half and then across in quarters, making 8 rough rectangles. Transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush the tops with the egg wash, sprinkle with salt, if using, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the tops are browned and the biscuits are cooked through. Serve hot or warm.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

May 22nd, 2011
by: Blue

These were *really* good. I got the basic dough recipe from the King Arthur Flour website and modified it a bit to suit me. Mostly because I can’t follow directions (I’m a rebel like that when it comes to cooking). The rolls are not screaming with pumpkin flavor but they DO scream with deliciousness, with a beautiful rich color and flavor.  Your house will smell amazing while they cook!

1 cup canned pumpkin
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup lukewarm water*
1/4 cup soft butter
4 1/4 cups King Arthur all purpose flour
1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, optional
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 package active dry yeast

*I wound up adding an additional 1/4 cup water – the dough was too dry

1/2 cup softened butter
2-3 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
1/2 – 3/4 cup brown sugar

1. Mix and knead all of the dough ingredients together — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — until you’ve made a soft, fairly smooth dough.

2.  Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl, and allow the dough to rise for 1 1/2 hours, until it’s almost doubled in bulk.

3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly greased surface. Roll it into a 14″ x 22″ rectangle; the dough will be thin.

4. Brush the dough with milk or heavy cream. Spread the softened butter on top. Sprinkle alot of cinnamon on the dough.  I didn’t measure the cinnamon (sorry!) but I probably used at least 1 tablespoon, and as it turns out I wished I had used more.  Then sprinkle 1/2 to 3/4 cup brown sugar over the cinnamon.

5. Roll the dough loosely into a long log and pinch to seal the seam.

6. Slice the log into about 1 1/2 inch thick rolls – the dough is soft and it’s best to use a serrated knife for this.  This recipe made 20 cinnamon rolls for me.

7.  Put the rolls into a greased pan. I greased my pans with butter (as if there’s any question on that).  I used two 13×9 pans (8 rolls each) and one 9 inch cake pan (4 rolls).

8. Cover loosely with greased saran wrap and place in the fridge overnight.

9. In the morning, let the dough sit on the counter about an hour, until the rolls start puffing up a bit.

10. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes


1 cup powdered sugar
Heavy cream

1. Add heavy cream a bit at a time and mix until the glaze is still thick, but thin enough to spread easily.

2. Spread the glaze over the cooled rolls.

Eat! And enjoy!

Bran Buttermilk Pecan Pancakes

January 16th, 2010
by: Sue

I developed this recipe to avoid having the sugar rush and subsequent blood sugar drop that you get when you have pancakes made with white refined flour only. The fiber in the pancakes slows down the digestive process and helps avoid the extremes of the sugar rush.

Mix together in small bowl, allowing to sit for 2-3 minutes:

1/2 cup Kellogg’s All Bran cereal (or other brand cereal you have)
1/2 cup milk

In a medium size mixing bowl, add and whisk together:

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup fine chopped pecans
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt (less if it’s not kosher)

In a small mixing bowl, separate two eggs then whisk together:

4 Tablespoons melted butter
2 egg yolks
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat the 2 egg whites until soft peaks form. I like to use my old fashioned egg beater and do this by hand. While I’m beating the eggs, I watch the foam start to make big bubbles then little bubbles and relish the luxury of doing this the old fashioned way. Pancakes are a journey.

Add the bran and milk mixture and other liquid ingredients (except the egg whites) to the flour mixture. Fold in the beaten egg whites.

Cook by the scoop full (approx 1/3 cup of batter) to a 400 degree heated pancake griddle. Flip when bubbles begin to appear, and put on heated platter covering with a kitchen towel until all pancakes are done. This yields eleven to twelve 5″(approximately) pancakes.

Serve with real maple syrup and butter.

We also like to serve this with chopped peaches (canned is fine) that are sprinkled generously with cinnamon. When you add the peaches, it is a little like having cobbler for breakfast! This is also good for the “breakfast for dinner” meal.

Beer Battered Oat Bread

November 16th, 2009
by: Blue

Another recipe from my Tía Loca.  This is my kind of recipe – beer and oatmeal.  Sounds like breakfast to me.


2 cups all purpose flour
1 ¼ cups rolled oats
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 Tablespoon honey
1 12 oz. beer
1 stick of butter


Preheat oven at 375, grease a 9X5 loaf pan. Mix dry ingredients, drizzle honey over mixture, pour beer on top, fold carefully (don’t over mix). Fill up loaf pan and drizzle melted butter over the top.

Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes.

Overnight Slow Cooker Steel-Cut Oats

November 16th, 2009
by: Blue

I made these oats this past weekend for my family while they were in town.  It turned out quite excellent, and the recipe was requested.  I absolutely love the convenience of this.

Find a metal or oven proof glass bowl that:
1) Holds four cups of liquid
2) Fits inside your slow cooker with the lid on.

I used a metal bowl.

1 cup steel cut oats
4 cups water
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup dried cranberries, or other dried fruit
dash of salt

Place all ingredients in the inner bowl that will fit inside the slow cooker.  Stir well.  Fill the slow cooker with water to a little more than halfway. Set the inner bowl in the slow cooker and see how high the water is. Add water to the slow cooker if needed, so that the level of water in the slow cooker is approximately equal to the level of liquid in the inner bowl.

Place the lid on your slow cooker.  Set on low.  Go to bed.

Serve this oatmeal with a splash of half and half or heavy cream, and real maple syrup.  Leftovers can be stored in the fridge and reheated.

How simple is that!!

Squash patties

October 14th, 2009
by: Sue

This is something I developed so my sweetie would get more vegetables with his breakfast. Reminiscent of hash brown potatoes, it has a sweetness from the browned squash that we love.

1 medium yellow squash per person, washed, ends cut off, then grated.

Place the squash between paper towel squares and blot the excess moisture.

Heat 1-2 T butter in skillet. When the bubbles have subsided, add the squash. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

When the bottom has browned, flip the patty, and brown the other side. Remove to plate and serve with eggs, bacon & toast.

I have added onion to this simple dish, but I prefer the simplicity of the butter, squash, salt and pepper. It’s magic!

Southwestern Squash Casserole

September 29th, 2009
by: Sue

When summer squash is in season, we love to eat this squash casserole. It contains the magic of green chiles, onions, and the bite of parmesan cheese. Not your typical runny squash casserole, it works if you are on a low carb diet.

1 1/2 pounds yellow squash, sliced thin
1 medium onion, diced
2 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup roasted green chile or four ounce can green chilies
2 Tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 egg, beaten
1 cup cottage cheese
1 Tablespoons chopped parsley
1/2 cup grated parmesan

Saute together squash and onion in butter in skillet until tender crisp. Add chilies, flour, salt and pepper and mix well. Pour into greased 2 quart baking dish or 9×12 baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Combine egg, cottage cheese & parsley. Pour over squash mixture. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over top. Bake at 400 for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Yields 8 servings.

Eggs a la Suisse

March 30th, 2009
by: Sue

This dish has lovely eggs cooked in cream with a little cheese and cayenne thrown in for good measure. A quick dish, it has the richness of the more difficult to prepare Eggs Benedict. I tried to make this once with milk and it was a disaster. It has to be cream and butter. There are some things that the French are right about and when it comes to cooking they are always right!

2 T butter
2 eggs
1/2 cup cream
1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 slices good bread, toasted and buttered

Melt butter on slow temperature in a small saucepan. Carefully break 2 eggs and slip into butter. When egg whites begin to show cooking (opaque and white), carefully add cream, cheese, and cayenne pepper. Cook at low temperature and baste eggs with warmed cream until egg yolks are covered with white well cooked film. Slip eggs on toast, top with cream sauce, and enjoy.