Apple Season

Audrey of Minnesota Prairie Roots wrote a blog post featuring a favorite apple orchard and right now my sister is in Okanogsn Washington visiting our brother and she’s watching the workers bring the bins and pick the apples in the neighboring orchard.

Audrey’s query- do you have a favorite apple orchard? reminded me of one of my favorite photographs which I happened to take in an Ohio Apple Orchard

My DIL is walking between the trees with Anna and Michael. Jack was at home napping. She’s expecting Maura in November. (2008)

I hadn’t started blogging then but since then I’ve posted a lot of apples here’s a link to the tag apple of old blog posts. And even a second page of posts tagged apple you c add non see Cider making and my SIL making an apple pie. There are photos of the orchards in Washington state. And there’s a tag of apples as well with lots of apple cooking

Maura Laura Charlie snd Anna
Lynd Farm in Pataskala Ohio
Me with Anna, Charlie and Maura

Have You Eaten a Pickled Egg?

This jar of Jalapeño eggs was spotted in Zanesville, Ohio when I stopped to use the restroom at the gas station on the way back to Pittsburgh. I bet these eggs are hot! They were right next to the jars of pickled beets. They got me thinking about pickled eggs I found an article in Mental Floss why bars sell pickled eggs which I really didn’t know much about. I also learned there are recipes in case you want to pickle some hard boiled eggs- here’s a recipe for pink pickled eggs from The Guardian

Have time to read a more detailed recipe? Click here Pickled Eggs and Pork Scratchings recipe by Madalene Bonvini-Hamel; Chef, Photographer and Founder of The British LarderThe British Larder

But if it’s the Jalapeño Eggs you want to taste and you can’t find a jar like I did, these take just seven days to make.

Jalapeño Eggs. Yes or No?

Two Longtime Friends Cook Modern Comfort Food Guest Blog

Watercolor by Joanne -Applesauce Cake with Bourbon Raisins baked by Colleen

Joanne writes from Florida:

So …. one day last month I was on the phone catching up with my friend Colleen who lives in Nova Scotia.  As we were talking about her new cookbook purchase, Ina Garten’sModern Comfort Food“, my doorbell rang and a package was delivered.  I opened it while talking and it was a copy of the same book!  What are the odds?  My dear friend Ruth had sent it as a surprise.  Colleen and I decided we would each pick some recipes to try out and share our results.  Here are the photos of our month-long project.  Fun and nice way to keep in touch.  Overall we both agree that Ina Garten’s recipes are easy to prepare and almost always turn out looking exactly like her descriptions and photos. 

We’re looking forward to trying out another cookbook author soon.”

Colleen cooked:
Warm Spinach and Artichoke Dip
Spaghetti Squash with Arrabbiata Sauce
Seared Salmon with Spicy Red Pepper Aioli
Applesauce Cake with Bourbon Raisins

Applesauce Cake with Bourbon Raisins
Joanne cooked:
Brussels Sprouts Pizza Carbonara

Brussels Sprouts Pizza Carbonara
Fresh Zucchini with Lemon and Mint
Roasted Sausages, Peppers and Onions
Joanne has been featured with Tea Bag Art and recently the zucchini as cucumber confused produce sign

St. Joseph at St. Michael in St. Augustine

St. Joseph Feast Day March 19     IMG_3592


You might remember another St. Joseph Feast Day post  Carmela baked all of these breads


 NPR story about zeppoles (pastry) – Providence Rhode Island at LaSalle Bakery

and click to read a collection of St. Joseph Day recipes at the New York Times

Notice -“Booming Stats” on Abandoned Blog Today

Five years ago I tried to create a recipe blog from my grandmother’s wooden recipe box and my mother’s recipe cards. I’d forgotten all about it until today when I got a notice from WordPress. Try this link to the blog   A friend wrote she had trouble

getting to itScreen Shot 2016-07-27 at 11.13.43 PM.png

Throwback Recipes Blog

I didn’t stick with this blog for very long.

There were SIX followers. Throwback seemed as if the recipes weren’t really relevant nowadays.

It stopped seeming like such a cool idea.

But today I got a notice “Your stats are BOOMING!”  On the Throwback Recipes blog.  Rhubarb Cake recipe and the home page

And 65 hits (that’s booming after zero) are from El Salvador, 2 are from United States and 1 from Australia. And in just ONE hour.

So thought I would share about my abandoned blog that got rediscovered today.

Did you ever start a blog and abandon it?

It’s always nice to receive those notices from WordPress.

Here is the Chocolate Pound Cake recipe my mother made





Cookbook Shelves Shared and Eat and Grow Slim Clipping

Thanks to blog followers who shared their thoughts and comments on Feb 15th post Share Your Cookbook Shelf and to the two below who emailed photos of their cookbooks.

From Colleen

“This is about half my cookbook collection.  I have over two hundred altogether.  Another bookcase this size and lots of little stacks around the house. Last year I decided I would pick a cookbook a month and make five recipes I’d never tried.  I did not complete the task every month but it was a lot of fun trying.”


Colleen's Cookbooks

just half? Thanks for sharing your photo, Colleen.

and from Euthemia  who says “My favorite cookbook is 660 Curries” 

660 Curries

plus another photo of her three shelves of cookbooks

Euthemia's Cookbooks

Euthemia sent this photo of her three shelves filled with cookbooks.



and here are a couple of photographs of my old cookbooks, a bit grainy in the low light shot with the iPhone

Old CookbooksMy parents spent their wedding night at The Palmer House in Chicago Illinois, August 28, 1939. I remember my dad said they ate Tomato Soup.  The next day they took a train to New Haven where they would  live for the next three years and they didn’t get a sleeper car but sat up (less expensive).

Palmer House Cookbook

I bought the The Palmer House Cookbook on ebay and it is signed by the Head Chef  Ernest E. Amiet in 1940 when it was published. I googled him and couldn’t find any further reference.

Palmer House Cookbook

Eat and Grow Slim
Eat and Grow Slim   like finding old clippings and notes inside the cookbooks

cranberry sauce and fowl
cranberry sauce and fowl- Affinity Foods

A way to a man's heart

52 sunday dinners

The Boston Cooking School Cook Book

Anyone Can Bake Cook BookAnyone Can Bake

how to mix cakefrom the interior of Anyone Can Bake

CAlves HeadAnd a photographic plate from the Palmer House Cookbook  of Calf’s Head en Tortue-   trends and tastes change over time.

Share Your Cookbook Shelf

What’s on your cookbook shelf?  These days, many people are cooking from recipes on the internet instead of cookbooks.

Did you ever discard or pass on a cookbook and then later regret your having gotten rid of it?

Diets, tastes and trends change over time.  I have a wooden box of my grandmother’s recipes but I’m  not making them.

I always enjoy reading a cookbook in bed, planning meals or dishes to try. Thinking about entertaining.  What I usually end up doing is making the same things over and over again for the most part, not using a recipe.

Comfort foods as of late, with the ongoing winter temps I feel motivated to cook hearty meals-  and eat them!

Here’s my sister’s cookbook shelf in NYC.  You might remember seeing her kitchen.  I love the Coldweather Cooking book and have a copy myself. I love to bake the Brown Mountain Cake out of the Farm Journal Country Cookbook.  The Fannie Farmer makes me think of my mother’s Boston Cooking School Cookbook,  tied with a ribbon.

I open old cookbooks, find a handwritten note or  a yellowed recipe between the pages, see my mother’s hand- memories of my childhood or my children’s childhood, recipes past, present and the ones I’ve clipped for the future (always heavy on the desserts!)

I’ll share my cookbook shelf another post.  Hope you will share your cookbook shelf photo.

Cookbook Shelf

It was hard to get it all in one shot, it’s a tight space!

Carrot Cake, Paleo/Primal Style

You may remember I mentioned my being surrounded by friends and  family eating different ways. Here is one, highlighted.   My son and daughter-in-law have gone Paleo since January 1st. Meat and plants, no grain is the basic plan. A radical change.  They are taking it pretty seriously and I don’t believe it’s a diet I could adhere to totally.   But when I arrived Friday night the dinner was diced and sautéed rutabaga, shrimps on a skewer that were delicious,salad,  and  a cauliflower, broccoli, carrot medley (my name for it, not what it is really called) This cake was the dessert pictured below.

Mark never really baked anything I can ever remember. But he was proud of this carrot cake. After dinner he went out to the garage (where it is cool) and brought in in on a cakestand with a dome!  I asked him how he made it since the diet doesn’t have any wheat flour or refined sugar.  I mean, it looked like a carrot cake. He said he’d soaked 5 grated carrots in maple syrup and then drained the liquid off.   He used coconut flour, an item I don’t have in my pantry. There were some  dates in it.  And if I heard him correctly, TEN eggs.   The icing was whole fat cream cheese and grated ginger.

Whoa, no worries… I just searched found a link with the recipe for the Paleo/Primal Carrot Cake  which sounds just like the ingredients he listed. I’m at Laura and James’ tonight so can’t check Mark and Erika’s cookbook and it is too late to call or text to ask.

Proud of the Paleo carrot cake he baked.

It was sweet but not too sweet. Incredibly moist. Satisfying. It reminded me of eating a baked good in Europe that was unfamiliar yet delicious.  The ginger flavor was more pronounced on the second day which was okay by me but if you don’t like the pungent zing of fresh ginger you might want the vanilla in the frosting. I have no plans to go Paleo but enjoyed perusing their new cookbooks and finding Italian Pot Roast that sounded great for winter .  I see they’re enjoying cooking and planning meals together, shopping for new ingredients. Real converts!  Tonight for dinner there was spaghetti sauce on zucchini that had been cut on the mandolin and was used instead of pasta.  They are feeling good and looking good and pleased with their change of eating habits.

In 1977 and my parents lived in Philadelphia and I lived there for a year with Mark when he was one, I remember there was a restaurant  that specialized in a rich carrot cake if you want to compare recipes.  What I remember about that carrot cake was how you didn’t want to eat a whole piece. It was too much.

My mom used to bake an occasional sourdough carrot cake in a Danish green enameled lasagna type pan and I found a recipe for that online.

I would feel comfortable serving the Paleo/Primal carrot cake to dinner guests. Thinking about carrot cakes. Diets. Nutrition. Ingredients.  Eating together with family is the best, no matter what is on the plate!

Anchovies and Arugula Pasta in Omaha- An Engagement Party Thank You

Today is a guest blog with three contributors, Joanne, Anne and Mary in Omaha.

I met Joanne in Germany when I was expecting Laura (28).

The photos are by Anne and Joanne.

 My friend Joanne writes……
Anne, Mary and I have been friends for some years.  We take adult ballet together and get together now and then for what Anne calls a “drag-around” which means whoever is driving, drives the others around town and decides where we are going …. sometimes we start with coffee or breakfast (ricotta three-berry pancakes at Amato’s featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives youtube and J says the pancakes come at the end).  Then off we go for a massage or the botanical gardens or the consignment shops … whatever suits the fancy of the driver.
In September, Anne and I co-hosted an engagement party for Mary’s son and to thank us she promised to make the anchovy pasta.
We waited months and months and she decided to have us over on a wintry Sunday afternoon in February.  It was worth the wait!

Mark Bittman -Minimalist: Pasta with Anchovies and Arugula article and video in the New York Times

Here’s the recipe for the coffee tort on from the kitchen of Army friend in Germany Janie Zimoni:
2 Tbsp flaked coconut
2 Tbsp finely chopped almonds
1 egg white
1 Tbsp dry instant coffee
6 Tbsp sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp almond extract
Place coconut and almonds in a pan.  Broil for a few seconds to toast lightly.
Whip egg white and coffee, gradually adding 2 Tbsps sugar.  Pour cream into this mixture and whip.  Gradually add 4 Tbsps sugar and extracts.  Whip until firm but not stiff.
Fold half of the almonds and coconut into coffee mixture.  Spoon into small elegant serving dishes.
Top with remaining almond-coconut mixture.  Freeze until firm, about 2-3 hours or overnight.
Remove from freezer 15 minutes before serving.
And some photos from the engagement party

In My Grandmother’s Hand

I might try to make something from her recipes tomorrow.

The Pineapple Upside Down Cake recipe.    My father’s mother’s recipe box. Sitting on my kitchen shelf.   Yellowed newspaper clippings between the file cards..  I was looking around for items to put on my Keep or Pitch blog and the antique radio  from earlier this week reminded me how objects can tell a story. Or two.  There are recipes for pickles and yeast rolls. Illinois cuisine.  The edge of the file card is discolored as well. I am not going to pitch this in the downsizing effort. I sifted through the cards, read her notes, remembered how she made egg noodles and hung them to dry on the broom handle. Mary Alta Kerr Hendricks born Feb 7, 1892.  She taught me how to knit.  I sleep under one of her quilts now and am figuring out how to repair an afghan she knit. In her retirement, she worked in the flower shop in Lincoln, Illinois.  Kept her lunch  (a can of spinach and a hard boiled egg), inside the glass door refrigerator right next to the buckets of gladiolas and carnations for the bouquets.

What did your grandmother bake/cook that you remember?

I chose this recipe card
cause her handwriting
seemed clear and legible
through the camera lens.