Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Ha!!! Halloween!!!

Look what I found at Michaels this morning!!!  Halloween!!!

I love this time of year.  Not a single red white and blue thing left.  Everything is Fall colors now.

I've almost eaten my share of fresh tomatoes.

Pretty soon we will be seeing these in the store.  I even have one growing!

I already put out my pumpkin bucket.

I've decorated the garden room shelves.

My witches are out.

Along with some black cats.

And it is time to get the Staub pumpkins out!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Hot Hot Hot The Endless Summer

 It is still hot and humid here.  Will we ever see cool weather again? What a year to decide to plant a container garden.  I water endlessly!  This is my pepper/lemon grass pot.  They are very happy growing together.

 I have picked dozens of tomatoes.  Sometimes dozens in one day so they have done very well growing in containers. They have outgrown their cages too.

 Two kinds of eggplants.  They have not done all that well. I think I have picked about 8 so far.  But that is just the Ichibans. This is the first fat one and it still has a long way to go.

 I continue to make delectable pepper and cheese omelets with these beauties.

 The bush tomatoes have done the best of all in the pots.

 And alas.....my okra has finally flowered.  I had almost given up.  Will I get enough to make gumbo?  I sure hope so.

 I predict many more peppers in my future.  You didn't know how psychic I am did you?

 My baby bay leaf tree has doubled in size.

 And my mums are blooming all over the gardens.

 This pot of flowers has done very well probably because it is not in the blazing sun.

 My hydrangeas put out double growth this year because of the heat so I had to cut them way back very early.

 My flowers did not do as well as I hoped.  Most are perennials so I am hoping they will be better next year.

I will be trimming the mums soon hoping they will bloom again this fall.  How does your garden grow?

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Bread Lovers Loaves

I got this recipe years ago in Charleston and just made it for the first time the other day.  It is excellent!  BTW....if you notice that red add on the top of my sidebar, you might want to check it out.  I was asked to join the best food bloggers site and it has all kinds of great recipes on it.  So if you are looking for something special, not only does it have all of my recipes, it has tons of other recipes as well.

To make this bread, add 1 C. milk to your mixer bowl.  Add 2 packages of rapid rise yeast (4  1/2 tsp.). Add 1/2 C. water, 1/4 C. sugar, 1 tsp. salt, 1 egg and 1/4 C. melted butter.

Slowly mix in about 5 C. flour. Knead until you have a nice smooth ball of dough.  Place it in a greased bowl, cover with plastic and let it rise until doubled.  People ask me about my mixer all the time.  It is a Swedish Magic Mill Mixer.  They are expensive but excellent for making bread.  I make a lot of bread!  I've had mine for at least 20 years and it is a workhorse.

While the dough is rising, finely dice 1 C. onion.

Mix it with 1/4 C. softened butter, 2 T. poppy seeds, 1 tsp. granulated garlic,1 tsp. paprika and 2 T. Parmesan cheese.

Dough rises so well in this weather.

Dump the risen dough onto you counter.

Roll it into a large circle 1/4 inch thick.

Cit it into 4 wedges.

Spread each wedge with the butter mixture stopping just short of the edges.

Roll from the wide edge towards the tip.

Place seam side down and pinch together any exposed edges.  Let rise for 30 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Brush again with butter when you remove them from the oven.

Four heavenly loves of bread.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Lebanese Meat Pies

Who doesn't like a neat little hand pie?  Every culture has a variation of these and for good reason.  They are delicious.

To make the dough, pour 1/4 C. of vegetable oil in the bowl of your mixer.  Add 1 egg and 3/4 C. of whole milk.  Add 1 tsp. of rapid rise yeast and 1/2 tsp. of salt.  Mix in 3/4 C. of flour and add additional flour until you have a nice smooth ball.

Place it in a greased bowl and flip it to cover.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise while you make the filling.

You can choose the spices you like.  I used cumin, turmeric, garam masala and garlic. Lots of garlic!

Dice a large onion very fine and mince your garlic.

Saute' them in a bit of olive oil.  Sprinkle your spices in so they toast.  I used about 2 tsp. of cumin and 1 tsp. of the other two.

Add 1 pound of ground lamb and 1/2 pound of ground beef.  Stir until the meat is browned then add a small bag of spinach.

Add about 3 T. of pine nuts.

Next, add fresh lemon juice.  I used 3 whole lemons.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Remove it from the heat and let it cool a bit and then add 1/2 cup or more to taste of crumbled feta cheese.

Cut off pieces of the dough about the size of golf balls.  Roll them out very thin.

Place a scoop of the filling in the middle and pull the sides towards each other.  Pinch and turn the edges to seal.

Place them on a parchment covered cookie sheet and brush them with oil.

Bake them ate 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until they turn golden.

This recipe made about 3 dozen.  It might sound like a lot but they do not last long.  They are even good cold out of the fridge.