Memories and healthy recipes for your dinner table.

Tag: summer

Barbecued Corn Relish

Do not let this summer season go by without trying Barbecued Corn Relish. This recipe happens to be a companion recipe to grilled salmon flavored with barbecue sauce; however, I thoroughly enjoyed the corn relish on a taco salad. You could also serve it up […]

Boiled Eggs Tips and Tricks

My favorite way to eat eggs is soft boiled with a runny yolk and a piece of toast to dip or mixed with a side of grits; it is part of my southern upbringing I suppose. Hard boiled eggs can be equally tasty sliced in […]

Blueberry Scones Over Melted Peaches

Blueberry Scones with Melted Peaches

I have longed for summer fruit since December. The stock of homemade jams and frozen fruit vanished before the new year. I was fortunate to discover a U-Pick strawberry and blueberry field close by.  The kids went hog wild filling up buckets of fresh picked berries. We ate as many as our tummies could stand, blended some into smoothies and froze the rest.  I’ve been waiting for the peaches in the backyard to ripen so we could make blueberry scones with melted peaches; a modern take on the southern peach cobbler.

Source: unknown
1 pound fresh peaches, peeled and sliced (1/2 pound frozen)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp lemon juice
1 2/3 cups flour
3 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbsp cold butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/2 cups blueberries
1/2 cup heavy cream, plus 2 tbsp
2 tsp granulated sugar or raw sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 8X8 or 9X9 square pan.

In a large bowl combine the peaches, brown sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice. Toss; set aside.

In another large bowl, whisk together the flour, 3 1/2 tablespoons sugar, baking powder and salt.
Using your fingers or a pastry blender, blend in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the blueberries and toss. Add 1/2 cup cream. Mix with a fork until the dough just comes together. Turn out onto a floured surface. Gather the dough and pat into a 1-inch thick round. Cut into 8 wedges.

Pour the peaches into the prepared pan. Arrange the wedges on the top. Brush with 2 tablespoons of cream and sprinkle with the 2 teaspoons sugar. Bake until scones are golden, about 50 minutes to an hour. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 8

Variations:
– To bake just the scones arrange wedges on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
– Substitute apples or nectarines for the peaches.

July Resolution How to Have FUN

Photo: Dancing in the Rain, courtesy of Photo Bucket Someone once told me they were leery of overly happy people because they must be hiding something. I think that there are individuals out there who are genuinely happy. The faults of life roll off their […]

Potatoes and Asparagus Omelet

On Saturday or Sunday morning I like to make omelets as a way to use up left over vegetables. Ideally to make this recipe for potatoes and asparagus omelets use precooked cubed potatoes and steamed asparagus to cut down on cooking time. If leftovers are […]

Family Campout Tips and Checklist

El Capitan at Yosemite National Park

Photo: El Capitan, Yosemite National Park

While I love living in our time period and the technology that we are blessed to have I feel it refreshing to escape the fast paced world of video games and internet to reconnect with nature. I feel like a day hiking in a glorious place like Yosemite resets my mind and puts everything back into a clearer perspective. Pricey decorations, the internet, cell phones, shopping and all other modern day distractions are of no importance. There is a brilliant ecosystem out there that when righteously tapped into is the best $20 stress medication one can buy.

When my siblings and I were growing up my parents took us on plenty of camping trips. It was common practice if we traveled anywhere we mainly camped. Many times that was the only way we could afford to take a family of seven to Disney World. We either pitched our tent in the campgrounds or camped out on my Aunt Sandra’s family room floor. My mom’s handy-dandy electric frying pan filled our bellies with pancakes and bacon, egg sandwiches, spaghetti and other delicious meals. Our camping trips were not as primitive as one day I hope ours will become. When the kids are older my ultimate goal is to take them on a week wilderness hike every summer.

I will confess camping with young children as inquisitive as mine may not seem like a vacation at the time as we scurry them away from the poison ivy, save them from dropping of a cliff or from burning themselves in the fire. When I see the light of childhood burning brightly in their eyes I recognize that this experience is not about me. They are free to explore, to leap from rock to rock, play hide and seek in caves, splash in a stream and even watch raccoons at 2:00 AM. They can get dirty and sticky and it is ok.

Camping with active little children or teenagers who think the whole trip is lame can be daunting. If you are new to camping or have a high anxiety level personality start out simple. Set up camp in the back yard or just plan on camping for the day. I know it sounds like a lot of work to set up a tent that morning and take it down that night. The first reason for doing this is if things are going well everything is already set up for the night. Secondly if you are easily overwhelmed the practice will help you become more comfortable and over time the children will learn what is expected of them. Also you will want to plan activities to keep the kids busy such as going on a hike, swimming, playing games, a bike ride, drawing or writing. Lastly be prepared to stay up late. Light a camp fire, roast some marshmallows and tell fun happy stories or sing songs together.

For a successful camping trip bring the necessities.
Gear:

  • Tent or camper
  • Screened arbor (optional but very nice to keep the bugs away while eating and relaxing).
  • Tarp large enough to lay under the tent (to keep water at bay)
  • Sleeping bags (Choose synthetic over the bulky cotton. If your bag gets wet the synthetic will dry faster.)
  • Camp pillows
  • A portable inflatable pad or inflatable mattress
  • Portable Chairs (optional)

Supplies:

  • Always have plenty of water to drink
  • Flashlights and extra batteries
  • Lantern and Fuel
  • Lighter or matches
  • First Aide kit (Calamine lotion, peroxide, baking soda (for stings), band-aides, gauze, Neosporin, tweezers, needle, thread, Dermabond, ace bandage, ice pack, Ibuprofen, eye drops, burn ointment).
  • Rope or twine
  • A bucket for cleaning and to help douse a fire
  • Trash bags
  • Map
  • Compass
  • Water filtration kit (if drinkable tap water is not available)
  • Citronella candle (optional)
  • Insect repellent
  • Sun screen
  • Toilet paper

Cooking:

  • Charcoal with fluid or firewood (check site regulations before starting a fire)
  • Camping stove with extra fuel or Dutch oven.
  • Pots and pans if using a grill or stove.
  • Skewers or tin foil if cooking over a fire.
  • Pot Holders
  • Can and bottle opener (if needed)
  • Cooking utensils- spatula, serving spoons, tongs, knives, measuring cups (depending on your menu)
  • Food storage containers (bear canisters or food lockers are required in areas where bears are present)
  • Mess kit for each person (or paper serveware)
  • Water canteens or bottles
  • Cooler with ice (to store perishables)
  • Dish detergent (if rural camping use sand and water from a stream if the water is not contaminated. Make sure to dry eating utensils thoroughly in the sun before using to kill any water born bacteria)
  • Hand towels
  • Oil

Menu:
Your menu will depend on the area you are camping in. If you plan on hiking in a cooler with perishable food is not a good idea. Be aware that some camp sites do not have tap water or electricity. Plan accordingly.
Search the following websites for yummy enticing meal ideas: Camping Recipes, One Pan Wonders, Camping Blogger, Papa Dutch, Gluten Free Camping, Simple Backpacking,

Some of our favorites include: Hot dogs, Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, Potato and Meat packets (combine onions, mushrooms, potatoes, carrots, celery, butter, spices, meat or beans. Wrap in heavy duty foil then cook using indirect heat), Grilled chicken breasts with roasted vegetables, Canned or fresh soup or stew, Fresh fruits, Fresh vegetables cut up, Cereal and milk, Eggs, Pancakes with Sausage or bacon, S’mores, Banana Packets (chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and chopped nuts stuffed into a banana with the peel still on. Wrap in foil and cook in indirect heat.) and Hot chocolate.

Clothing:

  • Pj’s
  • Hat
  • Sun glasses
    • Extra change of clothes, socks and shoes
    • Light jack (it is always important to have a light jacket on hand in case of an emergency)
    • Bathing suit
    • Water shoes or sandals
    • Life Jacket (if needed)
    • Towels

    Recreation:

    • Fishing poles, bucket, hooks and worms (check for licensing requirements)
    • Small backpack for hiking to carry supplies.
    • Books, camera, balls, frisbee, horseshoes, board games, cards, musical instruments, art supplies, notebook and pen and puzzles.

    Lemon Sponge Puddings

    There is a path by our old house that lingers near a home with a lemon tree in the back yard. What is so special about this tree is the fruit that grows on it. The lemons are the size of oranges and harbor a […]

    Banana Oatmeal Muffins

    Ideally one should be able to take any cake or quick bread recipe to make muffins. The banana bread recipe that we love so much by Baker’s Illustrated is not an exception to this rule. However, for our banana muffins we prefer a more delicate […]

    Skillet Tuna Noodle Casserole

    Tuna Noodle Casserole

    Tuna Noodle Casserole is what you get at the end of the month when the monthly grocery allotment is depleted and the items in the pantry and the refrigerator are limited. As for the pasta anything goes. I used half a box of the little tubular salad pasta and a can of mushrooms from the pantry. The extra pasta that was not added to the casserole was set aside for lunch the day.

    I am not an advocate of purposely hiding vegetables I just like to use diced vegetables to help add flavor. The vegetables also contributes a few healthy vitamins and minerals that are lacking in an ordinary serving of pasta and tuna with peas. The broth is an important step that you may be tempted to overlook. Not only does the broth add a little flavor it helps to soften the celery and onion. If you skip adding the broth turn down the heat after adding the onions and celery and cook longer or you are likely to end up with crunchy tuna noodle casserole. I like the idea of not having to bake the casserole. First off the bread crumbs are eliminated and secondly the time is cut down to only 30 minutes.

    2 cups broccoli
    8 oz pasta
    1 tbsp olive oil
    1 celery stalk, diced
    1 small onion, finely chopped
    2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    8 oz mushrooms, sliced, thinly
    1/2 chicken broth
    2 tbsp butter
    2 tbsp flour
    1 cup milk
    1 cup shredded cheese
    1 can tuna
    Salt and pepper

    Steam broccoli in a pot of water until slightly tender but still cunchy. Remove. Let cool then chop and set aside. Boil pasta in the same pot of water until desired doneness. Drain and set aside.

    Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet. Add celery, onions, garlic and mushrooms. Cook over medium heat until onions are translucent, about 7 minutes. Add broth. Simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes.

    Melt butter in the same skillet with the vegetables. When the butter has melted stir in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk blending until all the lumps are gone and the sauce is smooth. Simmer until the mixture starts to thicken, about 3 minutes. Stir in cheese. Mix until well blended.

    Stir in chopped broccoli and tuna. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

    Grilled Vegetables with Pasta and Sausage

    Grilled vegetables with pasta is one of my favorite ways to use up vegetables and left over meat. Except in winter when they all go in a pot for soup. This dish is a throw back to my days in college. It is cheap, quick, […]