Tuesday, January 12, 2021

More Recipes From 2012

Although January had almost a post a day, the rest of the year was as usual...a post every four or five days most of the time. One thing that I notice is that the introductions both explain the recipe and are very personal and sort of chatty...like talking to a friend about what's going on and how you feel. Looking over the posts for February through December 2012 I had a hard time deciding which to highlight...there were so many delicious recipes each month. Below are some of my favorites, but you can always wander through the blog and discover more!

Sharing what is going on with us is what blogs were originally for, so it's kind of fun to read not only about making Banana Muffins, but also about how Sweetie and I rented a trencher in February to lay conduit to hold the radio wire that is used for the electronic dog fence. We were getting ready to find a rescue dog...which we did months later...our favorite dog and current one, Pi. When we found him and brought him home, it was zucchini time, so I made an Asian Zucchini Soup and also posted a photo of our handsome new (to us) dog.

 I also kept the reader up on what was happening with my gardening pursuits, including the sprouting of seeds in the sunspace, (along with the recipe for an unusual Salmon and Spinach Cornbread loaf) 

to repotting the seedlings when they grew large enough (along with a delicious recipe for bar cookies; Dirty Blondes), 

and planting out the first seedlings while enjoying the tulip blooms (and a springtime Rhubarb Crumble).

There were some more recipes from the family cookbook, too. I made Chicken and Dumplings while it was still chilly because they are pure comfort food. 

Later, in the spring, I made Southern Fried Chicken the way that my Dad taught me to make it. He grew up in various parts of the South, so I think he knows his chicken. Due to the fatty skin compounded by the frying, I don't really make this anymore, but I have fond memories of eating delicious cold friend chicken on picnics with the family. 

Another great recipe is Classic Devilled Eggs...and these are the perfect thing to bring to a potluck. Whenever someone does bring devilled eggs to a gathering, they are often the first to go. 

Another recipe from the cookbook is a wonderful, stick-to-your-ribs soup, Country Bean and Cabbage Soup. If you have the remains of a ham feast, this is the soup to use for the bone and any bits of ham that are left. 

Another dish that would fit right in to the cookbook (but might have been left out) is Pot Roast. It's a hearty, economical dish that is also a one-pot meal (although you could add some rolls or biscuits on the side if you like). 

The cookbook is out of print, but one of my favorite recipes from it is Dad's Creamed Corn, a good one to remember when summer corn is inexpensive and at the top of the season. 

Another, which I make all the time, is Split Pea Soup. One that I don't make often enough, but one that was an annual treat while I was growing up is Lane Cake, a Southern kind of fruitcake for Christmas. Here my Mom is cutting thin slices of it. The top photo in this post is my niece with the version she made a few years ago for our West coast Christmas.

As you might expect, there have been plenty of great bread recipes this year, too. One of my all-time favorites (might be due to my sweet tooth!) is for Awesome Sticky Buns which use an astonishing amount of heavy cream, along with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon and an easily handled bread dough. If you know someone who loves cinnamon sticky buns, make these for them and you will be their hero! I have to re-link the photos for some reason, but if you read the recipe you will probably get the idea, especially since they bake in a pool of heavy cream.

Another bread to remember was baked on the100th birthday of Julia Child and the bread is her classic French Bread. She writes long recipes sometimes, but do give this one a try. There is nothing like a freshly baked baguette! Since it was also the height of tomato season, I made bruchetta with the slices of baguette.

Probably my favorite bread for the whole year, and a showstopper, too, is Pesto Rose Bread. It is actually not as difficult as it looks, but it's perfect for the fall when there is usually lots of basil if you want to make your own pesto...or you can use purchased pesto. Either way, your kitchen will smell amazing while this bakes and you will have an intensely flavored, awesome bread to eat. There is no rose used in making this bread...it's that the shape is similar to a rose. I made another won the following month for an auction and made a lot of money for my scholarship group since everyone wanted to win that gorgeous, fragrant bread. The unbaked photo shows the pesto better but the baked version with the slice out makes me want to bake this again, right now!

A fun bread I created this year was a colored Easter Egg Bread, which was a loaf shaped like an egg and made with dough that had been colored naturally with pumpkin and decorated with a flour/water paste that had been colored with food colors. It was a savory bread with some garlic to it, too, and it made great toast as well as looking festive on Easter.

The last bread post is for a variation of my favorite waffle - bread baked in a waffle iron - this time it's Amazing Overnight Gingerbread Waffles. I might have to make these this weekend! You start the batter the evening before and in the morning while the waffle iron heats up you finish off the batter. The gingerbread ones are great with bacon and lots of real maple syrup!

I think we should end with a grain salad and then a dessert, O.K.? The salad is one that I came up with by seriously altering a recipe I found on the internet. Forbidden Rice Salad uses the black rice called forbidden rice, plus Asian, citrus and fresh cherry elements. It doesn't photograph all that well, but Sweetie took two servings, so I know it's one that has to be included in this round-up of 2012.

The dessert is one of Sweetie's favorites and a deluxe and tart-crusted version of a diner staple - Coconut Cream Tart. This one is based on pastry cream, with lots of coconut, including toasted coconut as garnish, plus a decadent shortbread type tart crust (and whipped cream). Do try it!

That's it for 2012. My next post will probably be a recipe, then more retrospective posts later in January.

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