Great idea!!

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After the busy weekend we have had and some work that needs to be done outside today, this is what I am going to do!!  Happy Sunday 🙂

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Sweet and Savory Pork Roast

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My crockpots are probably one of the busiest pieces of equipment in our kitchen.  I use them weekly.  This morning I prepared a simple yet delicious dinner (the tween queen’s favorite meal actually) in the crockpot for tonight’s dinner.

This roast is tender and full of flavor.

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You can find my recipe and the ingredients on my Facebook page today here:  Sweet and Savory Pork Roast

 

Goulash

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Goulash is a meat sauce served on either rigatoni pasta or elbow pasta in our house.  Tonight I made beef goulash.  I will say…it hit the spot!!

Here is how I make our goulash.  (Recipe at bottom)

I use a pound of ground beef and a 16 oz box of pasta.  You can add as many onions and peppers as you like!!

Boil the ground beef in water until no longer pink

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Strain and add onion and peppers (these are our frozen peppers and onion from the garden)

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Cover with sauce to the thickness you want to serve over your pasta

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In the mean time boil your pasta

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Once pasta is cooked, scoop some of the meat sauce onto the pasta to mix it up

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Serve immediately so it’s nice and hot!!  A green salad goes well with this and some fresh homemade bread!

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Ingredients

1 lb ground beef

1 16 oz box pasta

1 jar spaghetti sauce (or your homemade sauce)

1 small onion

1 small any color pepper

2 garlic cloves minced

Boil the ground beef until no longer pink (ground venison, turkey, or pork work great in this also)

Strain and rinse the beef and return to pan

Add the onions, pepper and garlic to the pan with beef and brown the beef

Cover and spaghetti sauce and keep it warm

Prepare the cooked pasta

Scoop a big spoonful onto pasta and mix

Serve the pasta with extra meat sauce on top

 

Easy and delicious

 

First 2014 Snow Storm

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We have had our first blast of snow for the 2014 Winter season and it was/is a doozy.  It is still going on all around us.  It has stayed a little to the south of our little Island so we only have about 3 inches so far.  We are supposed to get more later tonight and into tomorrow morning.

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It started coming down and picked up speed covering many areas all over Buffalo, NY.

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Plow crews from all over are dedicating their time to different towns and areas.  This is Lancaster, NY and the photo is courtesy of a Grand Island town employee who traveled the 25 minutes to help dig this area out.

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In other areas sadly people are snowed in (the man of the house’s parents are one of them).  They can’t get out their doors to even begin the shoveling process.  But they are much better off than the people who are dealing with the weight of the snow crashing through their windows and collapsing their roof.

Here is a link to more snow pictures:  Buffalo, NY snow

And while this is a huge nuisance, I can’t complain as we are toasty with our woodburner, stocked with animal feed for the farm, have a pantry filled with canned goods and a freezer jam packed with meats, frozen fruits, and homemade pies just in case we get hit like the other areas!

Cranberry Sauce

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In our area you can buy fresh cranberries between October and December and then they are very hard to get.  The stores have great sales on them so I always try to grab them and make our supply of cranberry sauce and can it for the year.  I also froze 6 bags so I will be able to utilize fresh cranberries when we need them (especially since my son saw the batch of cranberry sauce I made today and said “mom that won’t last until Christmas”).  He LOVES the stuff.

I made it today using my recipe at the bottom of the post.  I made a double batch so you would need to double the recipe if you are making a double batch also.  I find it best to only double the batch and make multiple batches if you want more than 6 jars as it sets up better.  I will make another double batch next week to can.

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First wash cranberries.

In a pot add 1 cup of water per 12 oz bag and 3/4 cups sugar and bring to a boil.

Place cranberries in boiling sugar water and boil gently for 10 minutes (they will start to pop and foam and look like this picture).

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After 10 minutes take the hot cranberries and pour them through a fine strainer or use a food mill to separate.  I have done both and there are not lumps or pieces of fruit in the sauce after you strain it.

mill  Today I used the food mill.

Once you have it separated you can do:

1) if storing in the fridge, pour into the containers, let cool and then place in the fridge for up to 10 days.

2) if canning it get the jars prepared and water bath

THIS IS FOR CANNING:

Take the strained juice and place it back into the rinsed out stock pot.  Bring to a boil and add 1/2 bag pectin (1.75 oz box) or 3 heaping tablespoons.  Boil for approximately 1 minute.

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Ladle into hot prepared jars and put them in the water bath.  Once the water is boiling again, time it for 15 minutes with the lid on and boil gently.  After 15 minutes turn the heat off, remove the lid and let them sit for 5 more minutes.  Remove and place on a towel or wire rack and let sit for 24 hours before moving.

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This was a double batch

 

Store in a cool dark place for up to a year.

As a tip when we are going to eat one I pull it out and put it in the fridge for a few hours so it’s chilled!!

CRANBERRY SAUCE RECIPE (for 12 oz bag)

12 oz bag cranberries rinsed

1 cup water

3/4 cup sugar

pectin (if canning)

Bring water and sugar to a boil.  Add cranberries and boil gently for 10 minutes stirring frequently.

Remove from heat and pour into a bowl with a fine mesh strainer or use a food mill to separate skins and stems.

IF REFRIGERATING — place in jars or container and let cool.  Cover and store in fridge for up to 10 days.

IF CANNING — have water bath boiling and jars/lids hot

Place the strained cranberry sauce back in the rinsed out stock pot and bring to gentle boil.

Add the pectin and boil for 1 minute stirring frequently.

Remove from heat and ladle into hot jars and cover with lids and screw bands until tight

Place in the water bath and bring to a boil and boil gently for 15 minutes.

Turn heat off, remove cover and let them sit for 5 more minutes.

Remover from canner and place on dish towel or wire rack and let sit for 24 hours before moving them.

Store in cool dark place for up to a year.

IF YOU WANT TO FREEZE YOUR CRANBERRIES YOU DO IT THE SAME WAY AS I HAVE SHARED FOR OTHER FRUITS SUCH AS PEACHES.  DIRECTIONS HERE:  Flash Freezing Fruit

Apple Cake

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This is a very simple and delicious cake.  It can be served as a dessert, a coffee cake, or as a snack.  It’s wonderful warm out of the oven!!  It’s a dense cake full of baked apples.

You can find the recipe I used to make our Apple Cake on my Facebook page here:  Apple Cake

Change of Seasons

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I do not complain at the change of seasons because I like it.  I like the changes that take place all around me.  I enjoy seeing what the next season brings.

This week has been pretty much all 4 seasons in a week.  On Monday it was like a nice spring day here in Buffalo, NY.  Temperatures were moderate and the sun was out.  Tuesday was like an early summer day.  The temps were warm enough for a t-shirt and short sleeves.  The man of the house and I took a wonderful trail ride in the early evening.

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Wednesday we were back to fall weather with cool Northerly winds blowing.  I took advantage of the weather to finish preparing all the animal houses for the winter.  The horses heated water buckets were set up and plugged in.

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And today, Thursday we were into winter.  The snow fell on and off all day.  The horses didn’t mind and were happy to be in the big pasture getting a tummy full of good hay.

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The picture looks blurry because of the snow blowing.  But it wasn’t sticking to the ground yet as it’s too warm and still good for bug hunting for the chickens who did not seem to mind the snow either.

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And in the house the wonderful comforting smell of a big pot of chicken noodle soup filled the kitchen with a nice warm fire going in the woodburner.

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There was even a jar saved to give to Grandma tomorrow

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