Monday, March 30, 2020

CAROL'S SURPRISE COOKIES

The last time we met for Mexican Train (which seems like forever now) Friend Carol served us lunch before we started playing MT. She likes to do that and it is better than just having snacks. She served the Cajun Shrimp I shared with you, ham and cheese slider sandwiches, a dip, cheese puffs, and these absolutely awesome cookies that I am sharing with you today. Sorry I have taken so long to do so, but that was before PC (Pre-COVID-19 self - isolation).

She called the cookies Peanut Butter Cup Cookies but that title omits the Chocolate Chip Cookie part so I decided to just call them Carol's Surprise Cookies. Besides the fabulous taste, they looked so fantastic. 



Looking at them you would never guess the surprise inside of them. Peanut Butter Cup Thins.

I had never heard of PBCT until that day.  I didn't think to take a picture of the cookie from the side after I bit into mine, but the PBCT melts into the cookie so it is hard to actually see it, but that's okay, you get the added taste.

I didn't discuss it with Carol, but I bet if you wanted to use your own favorite chocolate chip recipe and just form the dough into a roll like the tube you can buy and that she used, it would work. Wrap it in wax paper and freeze or refrigerate it so you could slice it.

Here is Carol's recipe with out any pictures as she didn't take any for me as she baked them.

CAROL'S SURPRISE COOKIES

1 tube (16 or 30 ounces) chocolate chip cookie dough
1 package Dark Reese's Peanut Butter Cookie Thins

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Thinly slice the cookie dough and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. The cookies will spread so make sure you are generous with your spacing. Gently press the slice down to flatten more. Place a cookie thin in the center to the cookie. Then place another thin slice over the top. Press the edges to seal.

Bake for 15 minutes.

If you use the larger tube of cookie dough, you will just have a bigger cookie as the tube is just bigger in diameter.

Here is the Cajun Shrimp Carol served. If you missed the recipe you can find it HERE. It was pretty awesome, too.



Saturday, March 28, 2020

DAY 15 OF STAYING-IN-PLACE

Has it only been 15 days since we met at Keith and Carol's along with Janice and Leon for a modified Tasty Bunch gathering? Modified because instead of going out to eat (and we were going to go to the recently opened Salt Grass Steak House in Liberty), we ate dinner that Carol had prepared and then enjoyed a delicious cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes to celebrate 60 years of marriage by Janice and Leon and 48 years for Wayne and me. They greeted us at the door saying "no hugs" but we didn't stay 6' apart at the dinner table. They had gotten the word sooner than us.

We got the word the next day, Saturday March 14, that we would be "attending" church online until the end of the month. That's the day we started our "staying-in-place" or as most people are saying "self-isolating". It was during the next week that our mayor, Quinton Lucas, ordered it for the city and neighboring cities and counties in Kansas followed suit. The state or Governor Mike Parsons has never ordered it for the state. When schools started the shut-down, he said he was going to leave it up to individual school districts and that is the way it still is. It is the same even with restaurants and "essential businesses" as they are called state-wide. Restaurants in the area are "closed" for dining-in purposes. They are open for drive-thru and curbside service. So glad for that at least. Not just so I don't have to cook all the time, but it brings in some income for the restaurants during this time.

Grocery stores are open and except for three times when Wayne was not well and I had to go, he has made all those trips. So I guess you could say that I am self-isolating more than he is, but if you think about the fact that he comes back home, if he was exposed, then he exposes me when he comes back. My pantry is not as crowded as it once was PC (Pre-COVID19) so I am glad about that.

As I said at the start it is hard to believe it has (only) been 15 days. There is a post on Facebook about how hard this is on "huggers". I think it is meant to be humorous, but has a lot of truth in it. To me Huggers are extroverts and I am an extrovert. Wayne is an introvert. I also describe myself as a people person. That means this self-isolation is really hard. I miss being with my friends and especially family. The good news even though we are only about 20 minutes from our MO family, it is not uncommon to go weeks without being with the them. But that doesn't lessen the fact that I really miss being with them. I usually say "see" them when I talk about getting together with them, but "seeing" has taken on a whole new meaning with COVID-19. Our sons and their families have IPhones but we have androids so that means we can't Face Time. BUT we can video chat with Messenger and that is just as good. We have been doing that some with the CO family and during Spring Break, I did with Madison and Tyler (MO grandkids). Have also talked to Madison on the phone so maybe that will be something that comes out of the isolation. I need to call them later today, btw.

Even though my allergies are still bothering me (even staying in the house), I am feeling better so this week I have finally started being more active and doing some way-overdue- house cleaning. Did you see the post popular on FB about thinking you had put off housecleaning because you said you didn't have the time ... well that wasn't true? I find some truth in the idea. While saying I didn't have the time and being retired don't exactly go together, I was leading a fairly busy life. 

My calendar was full except for most Mondays and most Wednesdays. Otherwise I had something going on the rest of the week. I usually volunteered at Hillcrest Thrift Shop on the second Monday morning and the fourth Monday, I met with friends for lunch. We used to play farkle but got tired of that and decided to just meet for lunch. 

Tuesdays I went to the thrift shop unless I was meeting with Blankets of Hope, the quilting group at the church - second Tuesday afternoon.  If there is a theater production in town we go to opening night on Tuesday evening - those have been suspended though. 

Wednesday is free so I usually do doctor appointments, etc. Well, the day is free - I do have handbell practice Wednesday evening at the church for an hour and then the third Wednesday night of the month, I stay for another hour and a half for the evening gathering of Blankets of Hope. 

Thursday afternoons I gather with my canasta friends (twice a month) and Mexican Train friends the first Thursday. I used to meet with my quilting friends on the fourth Thursday, but dropped out of that group to spend more time working on blankets for Blankets of Hope. Sometimes Janice and I will go to an estate sale if there is a good one (they originally didn't start until Fridays but then many moved the starting day to Thursday to get two days at original price before reducing prices on Saturday only). Fridays are my Day with Janice. If there aren't any estate sales we want to go to, we find something else to do and at least go out to lunch. 

Saturday Wayne and I can do something together, if we like and Sunday is church and eating lunch at Roxanne's Cafe. That was my life - PC.

Sorry that took so much room but do you kinda understand how this self-isolating is so hard for me?

I started a group conversation with Messages (Sharon isn't on FB) with my canasta group and so that has helped to some degree to stay connected each day. I tried to start one with my two cousins, Carol and Marie, but that hasn't worked out. It was going okay the first day until I said,"We need to do this every day." Carol (Sissy) said she didn't know about that because half the time she didn't even know where her phone was and actually as long as she could go and work outside, she was fine. That's what her life is most of the time anyway (and she is happy that way). Marie said it wasn't bothering her either because she was basically a hermit. She just moved into a "tiny house" and I wish I could see it. So I went three days without contacting them. On the 25th Sissy sent me a text wishing us a happy anniversary. I called her yesterday but she was working out in the yard so I just left a message. She sent me a text later and apologized and told me a limb had fallen out of a tree while she was working outside and bruised and knocked the skin off her arm. Sorry her good day was messed up. Haven't heard anything from Marie so guess she is happy being a hermit.

As I started to say before I started "bird walking", I have been getting some work done cleaning, sorting, and reorganizing. I often find myself working a little here and then a little there so it takes a while before you might notice I got anything done, but that' okay. I heard last night we might be like this (self-isolating) until the end of May or into June. Not exactly how I thought I would be spending my spring. But at least it is warming up into the 60s most days. It is raining too though, not heavy rain, but raining. The sun is finally starting to come out so that means my disposition will improve immensely. 

I also finished two strip quilts for Blankets of Hope by sewing the binding on this week. That's good. Now I can get back to a wild teenage girl one I have had on my design wall for probably a week and a half or maybe just a week. It is hard to keep up with the days. My medicine container that has the days - mornings and nights help me know what day it is. Want to make sure my osteoporosis continues to improve.

Another change I haven't mentioned is IF - intermittent fasting. While we were in CA and visiting with one of our former pastors, Anna, she told told us that she and her husband Jonathan were doing that to lose weight and it had worked. I decided when we got back home, I would start it. I also read up on it and discovered it was not just a way to lose weight, but was good for so many other health reasons. That was enough for me to continue it. They eat from noon to 8 pm and fast the other 16 hours, but I am going from around 11 am to 7 pm. I quit eating after 7 a long time ago and the information I read said the sooner you can stop eating in the evening the better. While I have lost some weight, I think it would be working better if I could get more exercise. The fitness center had to close so we can't go there anymore. I just have to start at least walking in the neighborhood. I did twice but it is hard with the allergies.

The sun is still shining and I have been at this about an hour and a half so I guess I should end for today. Yesterday morning all I could do was "write this in my mind". I am sure I have forgotten half of what I wanted to say. (I forgot our anniversary, but will write about that the next time.)  I always write better in my mind than when I actually sit down.

United States
Confirmed cases                     102,361
Deaths                                         1,613

Global:
Confirmed cases                     602,148
Deaths                                       27,989


Here are some pictures of some of my work...

(There were magazines from 2014 in this magazine rack...





































and the work in progress...




I've done more, I just didn't take pictures...

Until next time....

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

NOT IN MY WILDEST DREAMS

If you had told me a few weeks ago that this is how I would be spending my days, I wouldn't have believed you. 

I am reminded of what always goes through my mind when we are traveling and traffic is moving along fine. Then something happens - a wreck or road construction, etc and the traffic pretty much comes to a standstill in the lanes going in the opposite direction than we are going. We may drive a mile or two wondering how far the traffic is going to be at a stand still. Gradually the traffic gets thinner, back to normal. That's when the thought goes through my mind, "They have no idea what is ahead of them."

That's where I find myself today ... I had no idea this is what was ahead of me several weeks ago. Back in January, the first week, we spent our Christmas with our CO family. If there was any talk/news about COVID-19, I honestly don't remember it. We came home and then left 11 days later enroute to Hilton Head Island for two weeks. We visited with Wayne's family in Tennessee on the way there and back (we had been there for 3 days right after Christmas for a wedding) and searched two cemeteries for my ancestors. W e watched a lot of television while in Hilton Head because it rained a lot and it was a good 10 degrees below normal so it was "coolish" walking on the beach, but I don't remember much talk about COVID-19. (I think it was all about the impeachment. That seems so long ago now.)

Back in KC, I tried to adjust to being back home after being away so much since Christmas. Friends Janice and Fran and I enjoyed seeing the stage production of Come From Away  a week after we got back. I had missed Charlie and the Chocolate Factory while we were in South Carolina and was really excited about seeing Come From Away. (And it was fabulous!) That seems so long ago now.

I didn't go to handbell practice because I wasn't going to be able to play when we played in church because we were going to be gone again - this time to Ventura, CA and I didn't go into Hillcrest Thrift Shop to work because I had Blanket of Hope meeting and the days they needed cashiers were days I had other things going on.  All these irregularities had nothing to do with COVID-19 just getting around to our next trip. 

We must have finally been hearing something about COVID-19 though because Janice told me she was concerned about our flying to CA. She said she thought I should wear a mask or something. At this point, I think she was being more funny than serious. 

We flew to CA on Feb 26 and stayed a few days with Friends Phyllis and her husband Marshall enjoying temperatures in the upper 70s and the SUN in Camarillo. We never turned the television on the two days we stayed with them before going on to our "resort" where we would be staying for a week in Ventura, and I don't remember talking about it and precautions we should be taking. (The thing that was happening on the news was about the different cruise ships and all the people not allowed to disembark. Because of the many cruises we have taken, I did feel terrible for them, but still no concern about us.)

The only thing I do remember before that week was over (except about the cruise ships) and then flying home was washing my hands often. There was never any concern about crowds in stores or even eating out. We went to church, twice, and of course, ate out a lot. We visited with friends from our 21 years living there. There was no major alarm being sounded. We had a great "free" time. 

Flying back on Friday, March 6 discussion in the restrooms in the airports usually centered around washing our hands. I remember one lady laughed and said we had all learned how to wash our hands this week and I said several times that I felt like I had washed the outer layer of skin off my hands. Still no other major alarm. 

I guess it wasn't until after we home that concern arose in the USA re people getting the virus. It was such a crazy time for me because we had been in CA for 9 days on Pacific Time Zone (2 hours later than us in Central Time Zone), got back to KC and 24 hours of CT before moving clocks ahead 1 hour because Daylight Savings Time started Sunday, March 8. When I taught school, especially, it would take my body a week to adjust to the time change when daylight savings time started. In a matter of about 9 or 10 weeks, my body had gone from CT, to ET, back to CT, and then to PT, back to CT, and then DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME STARTS! I'm sure my body was saying, "Give me a break!"

So four days after we got back to KC I woke up Tuesday with a slight sore throat and terrible cough. I was also having some sinus problems. Since moving to KC almost 12 years ago, I have had bronchitis two or three times. Thursday morning my cough sounded worse and my chest was working a little bit so I decided I needed to go make sure I wasn't getting bronchitis. I also was gathering with the Mexican Train ladies and wanted to make sure I wasn't contagious. 

At the grocery store right across the street from my doctor's office there is a walk-in clinic through the same medical group. It isn't always easy to get a same-day appointment with my doctor so the last year or so I have just gone to the walk-in clinic feeling that if something was serious with me, the PA  would call my doctor. I was asked when I checked in if I had been traveling within the last 14 days, but Ventura wasn't one of the cities on the list of "hot spots" in CA. (So I guess there was finally some concern.) 

Even though Ventura wasn't on the "list", the PA had me put on a mask and kept her distance from me. She tested me for flu but it was negative. She said my lungs sounded good, but she would give me an inhaler and she also gave me a little capsule for the cough. Since I had no fever, she said I wasn't contagious and could be with my friends that afternoon. She did call the Health Dept while I was there and told them my particulars. She just said for me to come back if I developed a fever or symptoms got worse.

On my way home, I called Friend Carol where we were gathering to tell her what was happening with me and let her decide if she would prefer that I stay home that afternoon. She laughed and said of course I could come. She greeted me with a big hug at the door because it had been at least 2 months since we had seen each other with all of our traveling. I went through my story again as everyone gathered, but no one seemed concerned. I coughed but not a whole lot and we all had a great time. 

Before we left, Carol asked Janice and me if we thought we should just come back to her house for dinner the next night instead of going out to eat for Tasty Bunch because she had dessert taken care of. (I knew she had ordered a cake for Janice and Leon's 60th wedding anniversary that she planned to serve.) We said okay. We didn't realize it at the time but that Friday night, Friday, the 13th, would be the last normal night we would have with anyone.

The next day, Saturday, our church cancelled all church activities and said for us to watch the service as it was streamed online. Even though life was going on as normal in a lot of places in the US, people in Kansas City had started self-isolating themselves. 

It still seems so strange. One day just seems to run into the next one. While Washington State had a major concern with a nursing home (I think that was the first outbreak we had here and I still haven't heard exactly how they were infected.) Cruise ships, I think. were the first places of concern as our trip was ending in CA. We have taken a number of cruises and we were glad we were not on one at that time. It seems like everything just started happening so quickly. 

After about 7 days, my cough lessened and I realized my symptoms were just allergy related now. I don't know what I had. They usually say a cold last 5 to 7 days, so maybe that is what I had. It has been so long since I last had one. Everything I get seems to be allergy related. Last night is the first time I have been in a store for 12 days. Wayne would go buy a few groceries if we needed some. After a few day of not getting out of the house, I started going with him but staying in the car. I told him people didn't want to be around someone coughing. It makes them nervous.

On the 15th, we were able to video chat with our older son, Jeffrey, in CO. That was a highlight during this time. It had been quite a while since the last time we had talked. We still didn't realize completely what our new "normal" was going to be.

Tuesday the 17th we were supposed to see Fiddler on the Roof at Kauffman and it was cancelled to be rescheduled. A few days later I heard that the Theater League was cancelling with hopes to reschedule the production of Aladdin we were supposed to see in April. At the time I didn't think there would be a problem but now, I doubt very seriously we will be seeing the rest of the season of shows.  Then on Saturday, the 21th we got to video chat with grandchildren Madison and Tyler. That's what I need a lot of.

The first few days after we got back from CA, the weather was warm here and we had sun. Then the temperatures dropped and the days were cloudy and rainy. The weather just seemed to model how we were all feeling. As I write this the sun is trying to come out and it is amazing how much that little occurrence can lift my feelings.

The rain and cooler temperatures plus the fact that trees are starting to bud out - all have made me feel I am a prisoner in my own house. I don't know how long this is going to last...the reports are not good as far as the number of "cases" and even deaths are increasing, but I will continue to stay in touch with friends through texting groups, etc. I spent yesterday sewing on face masks for dil Lori who is a physical therapist who treats patients who have just come home from the hospital. Today I decided to take a break and get some of my thoughts down. It is surprising how quickly all of this has happened here. As I tried to remember what had occurred, I can't believe it has only been 18 days since we got back from CA. Life is no longer the old normal. Grocery stores open from 7 to 8 for "us older folks" to go shopping, restaurants are only open for take-out, church is happening online, no one wants to get close to you, everyone now is home-schooled, proms are cancelled and maybe even graduation.  Not in my wildest dreams just a few weeks ago.

I thought I would share with you the view outside my sewing room. I took the picture four days ago. Every thing looks so innocent.



Here is a picture of the 4 masks I made for Lori. The top one is one for the kids. I need to see if it fits them.


I could only get two folds in the kid's size.

to be continued...

Monday, March 16, 2020

CAJUN SHRIMP

I was fortunate enough to get to enjoy Friend Carol's Cajun Shrimp not just one day but two. Actually Friend Janice did also. The first time was when our Mexican Train group met at Carol's house last Thursday, she served us lunch and prepared this Cajun Shrimp. (Which everyone enjoyed, btw)
Friday our Tasty Bunch was meeting for dinner and then dessert back at Keith and Carol's house. Janice and Leon and Wayne and I are in the Tasty Bunch, too. Keith and Carol had chosen a restaurant to meet at, but with the situation with the Covid-19 virus, Carol offered to cook dinner for us instead. We decided that was probably the better idea. So we got to enjoy the Cajun Shrimp too days in a row. 😋


CAJUN SHRIMP

1/2     cup olive oil
1        clove whole garlic or garlic powder as Carol used
2        tablespoons Cajun seasoning (Carol used Emmeril's Essence)
2        tablespoons lemon juice
2        tablespoons minced parsley
1        tablespoon brown sugar or 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar blend
1        tablespoon soy sauce
large shrimp (thawed if frozen and peeled)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Combine all ingredients but the shrimp in a baking dish. Add shrimp and marinate at least 1 hour. Remove the clove of garlic if you used one and bake 8 to 10 minutes. 


You can also put shrimp on skewers and cook on grill.



Friday, March 13, 2020

FRENCH SILK PIE

While we were in Ventura, CA recently, we enjoyed two pies from Marie Callendar. They were having their annual pie sale - fruit pies - $7.99, cream pies - $8.99, and cheesecakes - $9.99. We couldn't resist - that's why we bought two. It wasn't very smart though because it takes more than 7 days for us to eat two whole pies. One morning for breakfast, I had a bowl of cereal and a piece of Key Lime Pie. Don't get me wrong - it was delicious, but really - pie for breakfast.

Well Tuesday night after dinner my husband reminded me we didn't have any Key Lime pie to eat - so I told him I would make a pie the next day. I had no idea what kind I was going to make, but I figured I wouldn't have any trouble finding one to make. And I didn't.

I love French Silk pies in restaurants and didn't have to think long before deciding that was the one I was going to make. I have never made one before but it was pretty simple and you know me - I like simple. Mrs. H. J. Trees of the United Methodist Church of the Hamptons in Hampton, New Hampshire shared her recipe in the Yankee Church Supper Cookbook of 1980. I have several Yankee Magazine cookbooks and have always enjoyed the recipes I have tried from them.


FRENCH SILK PIE

1     baked 8"  pastry shell
1/2  cup butter
3/4  cup sugar
1     oz baking chocolate, melted
1     teaspoon vanilla
2     eggs 
1     8 - ounce container of whipped topping (I didn't use all of it though)

Bake pie crust according to directions on box or recipe. Let cool completely.

Melt the chocolate square(s) according to directions on package. (I melted mine in the microwave for 1 minute and 15 seconds which was plenty of time).

Cream butter and sugar.
(I sliced my stick of butter into narrow slices so they would cream easily with the sugar.)

Blend in the melted chocolate and vanilla til smooth.
(Make sure you use your spatula to get every bit of the melted chocolate.)
Add eggs, 1 at a time,
beating mixture for 5 minutes at medium speed for each egg. Don't forget to scrape the sides of the bowl between each addition.


Spoon mixture into pie crust. 

Cover with whipped topping and then
grate a little chocolate over top.

Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or longer.


Wednesday, March 11, 2020

PRIZE-WINNING HERBED BAKED CHICKEN

I can easily understand why I have friends who do very little cooking anymore. With all of our traveling this winter and eating out, it takes a special effort on my part to get in the kitchen and cook. I guess it is just good that we are both trying to lose weight and feel like "eating out" makes it harder to do so. 

I bought skinless chicken breasts frozen two in a bag at a popular warehouse store a while back. I had taken a bag out to defrost in the refrigerator on Sunday and just needed to find a recipe to cook them. I found this recipe in the second cookbook I picked up. I have found so many great recipes in the Hochstedler Family Cookbook, a collection of edible treasures from the family of Emanuel and Mattie Hochstedler.
Carmella Walters and Shirley Hochstedler contributed the recipe. Shirley was the wife of Verl, eighth child of Emanuel and Mattie. In the directions for the recipe, they said, "This recipe won 1st prize in our Howard County cooking contest a few years ago in the poultry division."

The recipe calls for 6 skinned chicken breasts. I always cook with skinless chicken breasts and when cooking for just Wayne and me, I only used 2 (large) chicken breast and cut them into strips so it would cook faster and have leftovers easier. I also cut the recipe in half for the most part (I actually increased the garlic powder to 1/4 teaspoon and used that full amount in my half version.) I then measured out half of the mixture and put it in a ziplock bag to use another time. I will show the original recipe and put my amounts in parentheses after.


HERBED BAKED CHICKED

2       cups bread crumbs (1 cup homemade crumbs)
3/4    cup Parmesan cheese (1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons)
1/4    cup chopped parsley (2 tablespoons)
1/8    teaspoon garlic powder (I used 1/4 teaspoon)
2       teaspoon salt (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)
2       teaspoon pepper (1 teaspoon)
1       stick butter, melted (I used 1/3 cup)
6       skinned chicken breasts (I used 2 large skinless breasts)
3/4    teaspoon paprika (I forgot the paprika 😞)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a bowl with a whisk. Set aside.

Melt the butter in a dish that is flat but with sides. (I did change baking dishes to a cookie sheet because I couldn't fit all my strips in the dish.)

Prepare chicken (if you are going to cut into strips as I did).
Dip chicken pieces in butter, and
then in dry ingredients. Place on baking sheet and sprinkle with paprika.

Bake uncovered for 1 hour. (Less if you baking fewer pieces.)


Here is the part I saved for another time.


Monday, February 24, 2020

CHOCOLATE CHIP OATMEAL COOKIES

Sometimes all you want is a good cookie! A really good cookie! And that's what I found when I made Ruby Hochstedler's Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookie. Ruby is the daughter-in-law, married to Glen, the sixth child of Emanuel & Magdelene (Mattie) Hochstedler (Kokomo, Indiana). Her recipe was in the Hochstedler Family Cookbook.

I made the cookies for us, but the recipe made about 5  dozen and after eating one, I knew I had better give some of them away or I would be eating them all. I took a dozen over to Friend Fran and then gave a dozen and a half to our neighbors, Coltie and Peter. I especially like to create that "warm out of the oven" taste so I heat them in the microwave for about 10 seconds before I eat them.

I didn't have any plain yogurt so I used vanilla yogurt. The recipe didn't give any directions for the cookie sheet. The cookies stuck slightly to the first two pans so I used parchment paper for the rest of the cookies. That worked great.

Click here for a printable version of just the recipe.


CHOCOLATE CHIP OATMEAL COOKIES

1       cup  white sugar
1       cup brown sugar
1/2    cup butter, softened
1/2    cup plain yogurt (or vanilla will work fine)
2       eggs
1       teaspoon vanilla
2       cups flour
2-1/2 cups powdered oatmeal (use blender)
1       teaspoon baking powder
1       teaspoon soda
12     oz ( 2 cups) chocolate chips
Nuts(optional) (I used 1 cup chopped walnuts)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

Cream together sugars, butter, yogurt, and eggs. Add vanilla.
Combine dry ingredients together in another bowl.
Add dry ingredients to wet mixture. Stir to blend.
(To make the powdered oatmeal, measure old fashioned oats into blender and "blend" until all oats are powdered.)
Add chips and nuts, if you are using them.

Form dough into 1 inch balls (a cookie scoop works great for this) and
bake for 12 - 15 minutes. (I baked mine the full 15 minutes.)

Remove from cookie sheet and cool on wire rack.

Monday, February 17, 2020

LEMON SPONGE PIE

According to one of our local weathermen, cold conditions just haven't been able to "lock in" here this winter. That is certainly alright with me. We will have a couple of days of cold and then it will warm up. Last week we had two really cold nights (I'm talking 2 degrees F and -15 degrees F. chill factor.) Then it warmed up in the 50s yesterday. The sun was shining so it warmed up to 70 degrees F on the back porch. 

It was really hard to just not sit out there and watch TV, but I forced myself to trim a Blanket of Hope that I have been working on forever it seems, cut and sew the strips together for the binding, and then sew them on the quilt. THEN I could sit on the porch, enjoy the sun, and slipstitch the binding down.

But before I started handstitching the binding down, I decided to make this Lemon Sponge Pie from the Amish for us since we had finished the Topsy-Turvy Tennessee Peach Pudding I made a few days ago.

The recipe was from my The Best of Amish Cooking (Traditional and Contemporary Recipes Adapted from the Kitchens and Pantries of Old Order Amish Cooks) cookbook  by Phyllis Pellman Good. The footnote of this recipe said, "Lemon pies were a treat. Citrus fruit does not grow in eastern Pennsylvania. But the area's proximity to the canals, that webbed their way as far west as Ohio and provided waterways to the Atlantic coastal cities, made it possible to get lemons and oranges. Some farmers sold their hay in Philadelphia and could bring home the treats available there. In many homes, lemon pies were made primarily when company was coming."

Our opinion? It is a different tasting lemon pie but very delicious, very lemony!! And it was pretty, also. Definite hit!!



LEMON SPONGE PIE

1       cup sugar
2       tablespoons butter
3       eggs, separated
3       tablespoons flour
1/2    teaspoon salt
juice and grated rind of 1 lemon (I used 2 tablespoons juice and 1 tablespoon dried lemon peel.)
1-1/2 cups hot water or milk (I used water)
1       8 or 9 - inch pie shell

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Prepare pie plate with pie crust.

Cream sugar and butter.
Add egg yolks and beat well. (Don't forget to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add flour, salt, and lemon peel together and
then add mixture to creamed mixture along with the lemon juice.
Add water or milk.
Beat egg whites til stiff peaks form.
Fold egg whites into mixture til
smooth.


Pour into unbaked pie shell.
Bake for 45 - 50 minutes. Cool on wire rack.