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End of Season Tomatoes

Window Sill Ripening Tomatoes. Last Harvest 2014

I gathered my remaining Tomatoes from the vine at the end of October. We were expecting our first frost, and  I just couldn’t see them going to waste.  We got several dozen tomatoes from that single plant….my first  vegetable in my TN garden.

I placed them on my windowsill in my sun room which has sun light on three sides throughout the day.   The sun room doesn’t get as hot in the fall and at night we keep the room at a cool  60˚.

I read somewhere, that it can take 1-2 weeks to ripen tomatoes wrapped in brown paper bags or newspaper, but I liked being able to see my pretty tomatoes.  They make me smile,  almost as much as flowers do… (almost)!

Having not given the thought that they actually “would” ripen, I just assumed they would take at least the full two weeks.  I had hoped to share them with my Mother who is coming for a visit this Thanksgiving.

Long story short, most of my Tomatoes are just about fully ripened, after only one week. Unless I make Salsa  or another recipe, I will not be able to share my fresh tomatoes with my Mother.

In the meantime, I have heard so many people talk about a Southern staple of Fried Green Tomatoes.  I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.  I did an online search for them and found so many varying recipes.  Some had ingredients I didn’t like (such as Cajun spice) and others used more or less ingredients etc.  Here’s what I came up with.

Ingrediants 4FGT

Fried Green Tomatoes

-1 large beaten egg
-1/2 cup buttermilk
-1/2 cup general all purpose flour
-1/2 cup cornmeal
-1 tsp. Salt (optional)
-1/2 tsp black pepper
-3 medium-sized green tomatoes (cut into 1/3 inch slices)
-Enough vegetable oil for half inch depth in frying pan. (I used a non stick pan)

In small bowl combine egg and buttermilk, set aside
In separate bowl mix 1/4 cup of flour, 1/2 cup of cornmeal, pepper and (optional) salt~ I try not to use salt when cooking, but rather use the shaker at the table if desired).

Next, Dip cut slices of green tomatoes in bowl of 1/4 flour to coat, lightly shake off excess, then dip into egg mixture and then coat in cornmeal mixture.

fryingGreenTomatoes

In a frying pan, heat oil.  Carefully place tomatoes in single layer in hot oil and Cook for 2 minutes on each side until you reach a nice golden color.  Do not burn.  Remove from oil and place on paper towel to soak up any extra grease and then cool.   Season to taste with salt & additional pepper if desired.

Fried Green Tomatoes

My hubby liked them.  After trying however, I personally couldn’t get past the whole “not ripe” tomato thing!  I thought it was just strange.  So…….I made myself a normal, everyday Tomato sandwich on a Toasted Whole Wheat bun with oodles of Hellman’s Mayo and black pepper!  Yum….nothing tastes as good as simplicity!

Fresh sill ripened Tomato Sandwich on Whole Wheat Bunwith loads of Hellman's Mayo, Black Pepper and fresh from the garden Lemon Thyme Sprig for garnish! Yum....nothing tastes as good as simplicity!

It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato.  ~Lewis Grizzard

Meatless Monday

Morningstar Meatless Mondays Turkey burger

Here it is! I went Vegan for at least a day. Since I am not much for red meats, this wasn’t too hard for me. However, I am a very picky person. I was gung ho when I signed up for this campaign with BzzAgent.com and when I received the coupon packet in the mail, I started to get a little leary of actually “trying” it myself. I figured, well, maybe, just maybe, I can let my family experiment with it, and give me “their” feedback.

I headed to the store, and searched the isles for the frozen section that carried Morningstar Farms products. Hmmm. Oh no. I am getting nervous now. Darn, girl. You can do this, I said to myself. Just pick out something with turkey or chicken in it. That’s all I eat anyways. So, I grabbed a box of Grillin California Turk’y Burgers. I headed to the produce department, and nabbed a head of lettuce and a couple of juicy ripe tomatoes. Also picked up a few fruits while I was there!

In the kitchen, I popped the Grillen California Turk’y Burgers in the oven (real simple), and decided to make some Garlic mashed potatoes as our side dish. I also sliced  up Granny Smith Apples and some sweet California bright Oranges.  I prepared the dinner plates for the family, (while contemplating ravioli for myself…….Nahhhhhh) I made up a plate for myself. I thought to myself. Grin and bare it kid! Suck it up. Be strong. Be brave. Be…..adventurous.

Sigh.

I took a much hesitant, but rather large bite of this Turk’y burger on the huge Kaiser roll. Which, I might add….I do NOT like those big buns!  I was (no lie), Astounded, by how much I liked it. Before my shocked husband could ask me how I liked it, I took a second bite. Just to be sure I wasn’t tricked.  WoW. I really like this. I never, ever, ever would have tried this on my own. (Had I not had a free coupon and a obligation to Bzz about it 😉 I really, in all honesty, can not believe I liked it. It tastes great. Not at all what I was expecting.

On the somewhat dark side……..

I thought the patty was flat. Skinny. Lacking at first glance. My only gripe!

I expected it to taste like most “healthy” foods do…….like cardboard.

How on earth could this measly little piece of meat, deliver a satisfied meal?

Well, it did. Between the Huge bun, the lettuce, tomato, apples and orange slices and the garlic mashed potatoes……I was stuffed. After all….it was initially meant to be a “Healthy” meal. I think I did pretty good at trying something new, and keeping it a little on the lighter side.

So. Will I purchase another box of MorningStar Farms® ?

You Betcha!

https://www.morningstarfarms.com/

I am a BzzAgent, and am given FREE products or coupons for products, to try, in exchange for an honest opinion on them.

CANADIAN BRIDELS

Another recipe handed down to me from my Mom, is CANADIAN BRIDELS. I have been eating these all my life~mostly beginning at Thanksgiving and  through the Christmas season (keeping them special), but these are so quick and easy to make with very little ingredients, for anytime throughout the year. Goes great with hot tea!

CANADIAN BRIDELS

You will need:
7 oz bag Coconut
1/2 cup butter (softened)
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour

Directions:
Cream butter and sugar
add egg yolk
add flour ( a little at a time)
add vanilla
Roll into small balls (about the size of a quarter)
roll balls into coconut
place onto baking sheet
make a dent in center with fingertip, then fill with Strawberry jam (or your favorite jam or nuts)

Bake 15 minutes in 350* oven
Makes approx 3 dozen cookies. (will vary depending on size of balls)
I usually double recipe to yeild 6 dozen.

Tip: These do not need to brown. A slight color change is to be expected, but not required. Can be frozen in seal tight container. Also, I personnally like to melt butter, as it is easier to mix.

Enjoy,
Pam

Canadian Bridels

My Canadian Bridels. A Family Recipe

My Recipe for Canadian Bridels was Published!

My Recipe for Canadian Bridels was Published!

CRANBERRY OAT SQUARES

Sharing a recipe that my Mom has been baking for as long as I can remember. These Cranberry Oat Squares are delicious.

I made them for the first time ever this holiday season. And made several batches since! Everyone gobbles them up!

cranberry oat squares1

CRANBERRY OAT SQUARES

You will need:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup softened butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 3/4 cups oats
1 can cranberry sauce (jellied)

Directions:
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, & salt.
Blend in butter, slowly, working in until it crumbles.
Add sugar & oats. Mix well.
Spray 13×9 baking dish with cooking spray. Layer 1/2 oats, then layer with cranberry sauce. Then layer with remaining oat mixture.
Bake at 325* 35-40 mins.
Let cool before cutting into squares. Makes approx 15-20 squares.

PIES IN A JAR

I saw idea and just had to share!!

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Pie in a Jar
Source: Our Best Bites

Ingredients:

* 12 – Half-Pint Wide-Mouth Mason Jars (The short, chunky ones)
*  3 – 9-inch Pie Crusts (double that if you’re making a pie that needs crust on top) You can make your own, but if       you are short on time, store bought crust would work just fine.
*  Pie Filling (Apple is my favorite, but you can use any filling you prefer)

Directions:

Thoroughly Wash and dry your Mason Jars. (removing any stickers or labels)

Step 1. Dough. Make your dough, and roll it out. Cut the pie crust into quarters. You’ll use 1/4 of each pie crust for each jar. Press the piece of pie crust into the jar, covering the sides and reapplying excess crust as needed. Fill the jar with your pie filling .About a half cup filling per jar. Roll out a small amount for the top crust, using the lid to the jar as a guide.

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Once you have filled your jar, and topped it with the crust, you can put the jar lids on and freeze the individual pies (before baking) to have them set aside in the event you need a quick dessert for company. You’ll just pull ‘em from the freezer and bake them as directed in the recipe.

Optional:  (visit website for more variations and additional photos)

Crumb Topping (for 4-6 pies)                               
1/4C brown sugar
1/4 C flour
2 Tbs oats
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbs cold butter
Combine sugar, flour and cinnamon. Cut in butter. Add oats and stir to combine.

Or, you can go ahead and bake your pies according to the recipe.** Optional step here that I HIGHLY reccomend: Brush pie tops with butter and sprinkle with sugar at this point! I’ve found no variation in cook time needed from a 9-inch pie to the Pies in a Jar. You might want to keep an eye on your pies, though, just to be safe.

Bake ‘em

Now first let me say that one of the biggest concerns from everyone is about the jars breaking in the oven. All I can say it that I’ve baked hundreds of these and never once has a jar broken. These are canning jars- they are designed to be boiled, pressure cooked, etc. So it’s different than putting any ol’ piece of glass in the oven. They bake just fine!But if you’re freaking out then my advice would be this: remove lids from jars and place jars on a baking sheet. Place baking sheet in a COLD oven. Then turn the oven to 375. That will give the jars a chance to warm up slowly as the oven preheats. If you’re really worried you can always let them sit at room temp for a bit first before putting them in a cold oven. Bake for about 50-60 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and the middles are bubbly. If you’re baking them fresh and not frozen they take about 45 minutes.

Once they’re ready, just let ‘em cool and serve when desired.

Credit of & You can visit  “Our Best Bites” at http://www.ourbestbites.com/2009/09/single-serving-pie-in-a-jar/.

MADE FROM SCRATCH BROWNIES

I am drooling right now! I Loooove Chocolate. Homemade brownies with Coco in it are a real treat. That’s the way Mom and Grandma made things back in the day! Oh my gosh, YUMMY! Thank you to a new found friend, Sweet Tea and Cornbread, for sharing “NANA’S BEST FROM SCRATCH BROWNIES” (with cocoa! ♥ 🙂 http://sweetteaandcornbread.blogspot.com/2012/03/nanas-best-from-scratch-brownies.html

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