Thursday, January 31, 2013

Caraway-Rye Bread

  • 4 - 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 2 cups warm water (120 degrees F to 130 degrees F)
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups rye flour
  • 1 tablespoon caraway seeds
  • Cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons milk 
1. In a large mixing bowl stir together 2-3/4 cups of the bread flour and the yeast. Add warm water, brown sugar, oil, and salt. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping sides of bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in rye flour, caraway seeds, and as much of the remaining bread flour as you can.
2. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough remaining bread flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic (6 to 8 minutes total). Shape dough into a ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface of dough. Cover; let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
3. Punch dough down. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide dough in half. Cover; let rest 10 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly grease a baking sheet and sprinkle with cornmeal.
4. Shape dough by gently pulling each portion into a ball, tucking edges under. Place on prepared baking sheet. Flatten each dough round slightly to about 6 inches in diameter. (Or, shape each dough half into a loaf shape by patting or rolling. Place in two greased 8x4x2-inch loaf pans.) If desired, lightly score top of bread with a sharp knife. Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double (30 to 45 minutes).
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Brush tops of loaves with milk. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until top and sides are deep golden brown and bread sounds hollow when lightly tapped. Immediately remove from baking sheet (or pans). Cool on wire racks.
6. Makes 2 loaves (24 slices).

Peasant Rye Bread:
  • Prepare as above, except reduce rye flour to 1 cup. Stir in 1/4 cup whole bran cereal and 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal with rye flour.
This picture does it no justice. I hadn't baked it yet. I had only let it rise. But it was the most delicious bread I've had in a long time! The kids LOVED helping to make it.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Simple Eggs and Bacon

I tried this the other day and absolutely loved them! I will recommend that you do not use thick sliced bacon, it takes too long to bake.
Simply wrap your muffin tins with bacon, fill with seasoned whipped eggs and cheese, and bake at 350* for 30-35 minutes.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap

I found this wonderful recipe online at This blog, I can teach my child and I've used it twice now and LOVE the soap. While it calls for Fels-Naptha soap, I use Dove for sensitive skin. It is what we use in the shower and the kids can use it. They have sensitive skin and eczema, so we have to be careful about laundry soap. Also, we have an old house so we have to use liquid soap to be sure we don't cause problems with the pipes under the house.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to pick up:
  • Borax ($2.99 at Walmart or Target–in the laundry aisle)
  • Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (NOT Baking Soda–$2.99 at local grocery store in laundry aisle)
  • Fels-Naptha Soap Bar ($1.56 at local grocery store in laundry aisle)
  • 5-gallon bucket with lid (around $4 at Home Depot)
  • 10 gallon milk jugs (or other containers) that have been cleaned and rinsed (the concentrate will disperse more evenly if you go ahead and divide it up.
  • OPTIONAL:  Essential Oil Drops for fragrance (we did not add this, so I am not sure how much it costs)

1.  Grate the entire bar of the Fels-Naptha soap.
2.  Put in a pot with 4 cups of hot water.  Stir continuously over medium-low heat until all of the soap flakes have dissolved and melted (about 10 minutes).
 It should be slightly foamy with no “chunks” or flakes to be found.
3.  Fill a 5-gallon bucket half-full of hot water.
4.  Pour in the soap mixture.  Add 1 cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda and 1/2 cup Borax.  Stir.
5.  Fill the rest of the 5-gallon bucket with water until it is full.  Stir again.
6.  Cover and let it sit overnight.
7.  When you open the top up the next day, it should have gelled and thickened slightly.  Stir again.
8.  Use a funnel to fill a clean laundry detergent container (or gallon-size milk jug) and fill it HALF way with the soap mixture.  Fill the other half with water and shake.
 Here is a picture of my first stash of homemade soap. I shared with family and friends so it didn't last as long as I wanted it to. BUT I didn't have to pay anything this time to start making it. I already had all the ingredients.

Cheesy Chicken Ranch Lasagna

I tried this recipe. I was not exactly thrilled with it. Nor was anyone in the family. BUT we are a very picky family. Also, I messed up a few times. So I would give it a try. I know I will be trying it again. I also tried it with penne noodles. I also forgot to take an after it was finished picture. Though I did manage to get a before picture.

  • 2 (12 oz) cans evaporated milk
  • 1 (1 oz) pkg. dry Ranch dressing mix (not the dip blend)
  • 3 Cup cubed, cooked chicken
  • 1 (16oz) lasagna noodles, cooked
  • (9 noodles)
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Cups cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Cups mozzarella cheese, grated

  • 1 Combine
    evaporated milk and Ranch dressing (and pepper if desired) in a 3 quart
    heavy saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring frequently until dry
    ingredients are dissolved. Simmer, uncovered, 25 minutes, stirring
  • 2 Sauce will thicken slightly.
  • 3 Cook lasagna noodles until al dente.
  • 4 Layer half of lasagna noodles, chicken, sauce, and cheese in well-greased 9×13 pan.
  • 5 Repeat layers again.
  • 6 Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
  • 7 Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

1/8tsp pepper (optional)

*Try penne pasta (maybe like 2 1/2 C worth pasta uncooked) and do it like a casserole.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


Welcome to my blog! Join me in my adventure of starting a business, cooking, baking and running a house. Along with having 2 krazy boys running around the house while I'm at it.
I love to cook. I love watching everyone enjoy all the yummy stuff I've made. It makes it a great accomplishment.
I figured I would share one of my favorite recipes to start out. Chicken Alfredo Pesto Pasta.

What You Need
1/2lb. Penne Pasta
2 tsp.oil
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cups milk
1/2 cup (1/2 of 8-oz. tub) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese Spread
1 large red pepper, cut into strips
1/4 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 Tbsp. pesto

Make It

COOK pasta as directed on package, omitting salt.
Meanwhile, heat oil in large nonstick skillet on medium heat. Add
chicken; cook and stir 7 min. or until done.

STIR in milk and cream cheese spread; cook 3 min.
or until cream cheese is completely melted and sauce is well blended.
Add peppers, Parmesan and pesto; stir. Cook 3 min. or until heated
through, stirring occasionally.

DRAIN pasta. Add to cream cheese sauce; toss to coat.

Kraft Kitchens Tips


Substitute 1-1/2 cups roasted red pepper strips for the fresh red pepper strips.

Special Extra

For more intense flavor, stir in 1 Tbsp. lemon
zest or 1/2 cup pitted dry-cured olives, along with the peppers,
Parmesan and pesto.

This is my favorite go to recipe. The kids absolutely love it! As do I!