It’s just good!

Really, it’s probably some of the best pumpkin bread I have ever had! Well, it’s some of the best pumpkin bread I have ever made, that’s for sure! With or without nuts…it’s absolutely amazing!

I’ve made it several times now, and it always turns out the same…delicious! So, it’s a keeper for me!

The recipe says that it will make 2 loaves, but I think it would have to be 2 little loaves, because I found that it makes just one amazing loaf that is gone in no time! I also found that I prefer it without the ground cloves in it, but that is probably just a matter of taste preference. Either way, it’s still good!

Fortunately, it’s also very easy to make.

Samhain Pumpkin Bread
16 Servings, Prep Time: 20 Minutes, Cook Time: 50 Minutes

Ingredients

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 (15 ounce) can canned pumpkin
1/3 cup water
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

Pre-heat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 2 loaf pans. (I just made 1)

Stir the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves together in a large bowl. Whisk together the pumpkin, water, eggs, vanilla, and vegetable oil together in a separate bowl. Gradually pour the wet mixture into the dry while whisking until everything is well mixed. Fold the walnuts into the batter. Divide the batter between the two prepared loaf pans.

Bake in the preheated oven until the top is golden and springs back when lightly pressed, 50 to 60 minutes. Allow to cool 20 minutes before removing from the pans.

It also makes the house smell wonderful, and tastes even better. But be warned, it gets eaten fast!  Enjoy! 🙂

Oh happiness…

I might need to get some ice cream today.

I was hoping to get my cast off of my arm today, but nope….one more week to go!  I guess I can’t fool the Doctor after all. I thought it had been on long enough, but she apparently doesn’t agree with me.

You can't buy happiness

I can do this!

Must get ice cream!

A time for tea

“If you are cold, tea will warm you,
If you are too heated, it will cool you,
If you are depressed, it will cheer you,
If you are exhausted, it will calm you”
– William Gladstone

It’s the perfect place to relax, and enjoy the fine experience of “afternoon tea“.

Today, this was my gift to my mom for Mother’s Day …. Tea for two.

The Aubrey Rose tea room in La Mesa, CA, offers a delightful experience to savor, both visually and for the palate.

Aubrey Rose tea room

We enjoyed some delicious tea, a most unusual flavor of chocolate and hazelnut for one of our choices, and the other a delightful blend of peaches and cream.

Chocolate/hazelnut tea
A light little cookie begins this amazing experience of afternoon tea! Oh to be spoiled like this everyday!

cookies

Some tasty tea sandwiches, and sweet treats were the perfect complement for the tea.

tea sandwiches

sweets

Of course tea just wouldn’t be complete without scones!

Fresh baked lemon, blueberry scones were the perfect touch to this delightful experience. Complete with lemon curd, and Devonshire cream.
Oh, so delicious !

scones

Happy Mother’s Day to my mom – a most wonderful lady, with an abundant amount of unconditional love.

Thank you for always loving me! I love you!

 

A Chicken in every crock pot

A “chicken in every pot“, was a quote that was used during the presidential race of 1928, and is even used to this day.  The quote is often attributed to Herbert Hoover, but I found out that he wasn’t the one who actually said it.

The phrase was actually used by the Republican National Committee during Hoover’s presidential campaign, and they borrowed it from King Henry IV.

~ “If God keeps me, I will make sure that there is no sharecropper in my kingdom who does not have the means to have a chicken in the pot every Sunday!” ~ King Henry IV

So, I decided to give it a try.  I got out my trusty crock pot, and I put it to use!  I put a chicken in it!  And I found what I think just might be my new favorite way to cook chicken!

crockpot

The recipe is actually called “Chicken In a Pot”!  It’s super easy and it makes delicious chicken and broth.

“Chicken In a Pot”

  • 2 carrots sliced
  • 2 onions sliced
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 3 pound broiler/fryer chicken
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 1/2 cup water, chicken broth or white wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon basil

Put carrots, onion, and celery in bottom of Crock Pot. Add whole chicken. Top with salt, pepper, liquid. Sprinkle basil over top. Cover, cook on Low 8 to 10 hours (High: 3 1/2 to 5 hours, using 1 cup water). Remove chicken and vegetables with spatula.

When it was done, I strained the liquid, and took all of the chicken off of the bones.  I used some of the chicken to make delicious chicken enchiladas the first night, and then I put the rest of the chicken in freezer bags to use at a later time.  I also have a quart of chicken broth/stock to use the next time I make chicken noodle soup!

And…I feel quite accomplished!

Well done King Henry IV.  You had a great idea!

The kale experiment

I was looking through a food magazine and came across the idea for kale chips!

Hmmm, that just might work!

Kale is an interesting vegetable to me. It’s very dark green, and leafy, and reminds me too much of spinach, something that I only like if it is not cooked!  So, cooking with kale scares me a little.  I’m always afraid it will taste like cooked spinach.

But kale is different to me, and I actually don’t mind the flavor of it, so I thought I would give this little suggestion a try.

Instead of making potato chips, I decided to experiment by making kale chips.

I tore the kale into bite size pieces, and took the stems off, sprinkled them with olive oil and sea salt, and baked them in the oven for about 30 minutes. And much to my surprise, it worked!

My first batch had a little too much oil and salt on it. I probably should have followed the recommended amounts for both, but I got a little carried away.  So what I ended up with was a very salty kale chip, it reminded me of salty sunflower seeds.

This will probably never make it in my top 10 favorite foods, but it was tasty enough that I am willing to give it another try.  I must admit, it is hard to eat just one!

Next time, I definitely won’t use as much oil or salt.