Thursday, February 26

Dry Rub Mix

Dry Rub Mix for Meat or Barbecue Sauce
While searching the Internet a few years back for a good homemade dry rub mix I came across this recipe on The Yummy Life Blog. 
I decided to give it a try and I was not disappointed.  Turns out it’s great on chicken, beef, and pork and I have even used it on fish or when grilling shrimp.

Most of the spices I already had on hand and only had to purchase one or two.
I love spices and when I find one we like I usually purchase an extra.  I also love going into spice shops when we travel.  It's comparable to some people's shoe addiction I think. 

This dry rub mix took me back to long ago memories of my sister Debra and her wonderful recipes and spicy cooking.  One summer weekend years ago, she even spent the day showing my husband Bill and I how to make homemade barbecue sauce.  My sister Debra could just mix things together and they came out delicious every time.  I lost my sister a few years back, but this dry rub mix encouraged me to try to reproduce her barbecue sauce. And I have to say, it turned out wonderful!
So much so that the kids think I shouldn't share it, but I don't want good recipes to be lost forever. 
Been there, regret that.

Sunday, February 22

Sausage Kale Soup (Zuppa Toscana)

There is something so comforting and soothing about having a hot bowl of soup on a cold winter’s day. 

If you ever wondered about soup, traditionally, soups are classified into two main groups: clear soups and thick soups. 
I always call mine soup or stew; depending on how thick it is and if there are more ingredients than liquid. 

For soup sticklers, many definitions state: 
“Soups are similar to stews, and in some cases there may not be a clear distinction between the two; however, soups generally have more liquid than stews.” 

According to Wikipedia, “Evidence of the existence of soup can be found as far back as about 20,000 BC. Boiling was not a common cooking technique until the invention of waterproof containers (which probably came in the form of clay vessels). Animal hides and watertight baskets of bark or reeds were used before this. To boil the water hot rocks were used.”

Friday, February 20

Rabbits: A Natural and Cultural History

Lagomorphs; A Natural and Cultural History.
By Guest Blogger Alexis Lynch.

Rabbits are remarkable and fascinating creatures that deserve appreciation, so I think a bit of an overview is in order:

Rabbits (Sylvilagus) and Hares (Lepus) of North America belong to the Order and Family Lagomorpha Leporidae, and in total there are 29 species of rabbits and 32 species of hares.

So what’s the difference between a rabbit and a hare? 
Rabbits are altricial; meaning they are born in an undeveloped state and require care and feeding by the parents. Rabbits are born naked and blind into fur-lined nests in burrows below ground. They stay in the nest tended to by their mother for a couple of weeks.

Thursday, February 12

Psycho Kitty or Sybil the Cat

Our small farm was once part of a much larger property with acres of farmland.  Included in that original property were woods.  Our land is still pretty wooded and has a creek, but now the denser woods are across the road from ours.  Two of our neighbor’s homes are in and surrounded by woods, a creek and ravines.
Because of that natural setting we see a lot of wild animals:  Deer, fox, coyote, opossum, raccoon, rabbits, snakes and hawks to name a few.

A couple years ago on a trip to see Maple Syrup making demonstrations, we ended up adopting 2 barn cats from Malabar Farm, the historical farm of Pulitzer prize winning author Louis Bromfield.  Seems many cats are dumped in front of the park and end up living in their main barn.  The park workers are constantly looking for homes for the many (and I mean many) barn cats living on the property.

Monday, February 9

Make in the Morning Cinnamon Rolls

I am anxiously awaiting the perfect outdoor temperatures so I can once again tap my maple trees to make maple syrup.  The temps need to be above 40 degrees during the day and below freezing at night. This causes the sap to run.  

While waiting all I can think about are recipes using maple syrup.

This is a pretty easy homemade Cinnamon Roll recipe and perfect for a lazy Saturday morning.

These can be started in the early morning hours before everyone wakes, and are ready in about 1 to 1½ hours, start to finish.   Their also just as good the next day! (if any make it that long)

Tuesday, February 3

Look What I Found: Antique Handmade Quilt

Patchwork Quilt
I like stopping in second hand stores, thrift stores and antique shops whenever possible.
This is my latest find:  a beautiful old patchwork quilt!
I know very little about quilts except I like them and collect them if the price is right.  This is one of my best finds yet at $8.99.
I found this quilt especially interesting because of the pattern and names so I did a little research on old quilts.

A patchwork quilt is a quilt in which the top layer consists of pieces of fabric sewn together to form a design. Originally, this was to make full use of left-over scraps of fabric.

If you are reading this post and can shed more light on this quilt I would really 
appreciate it!