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Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

This Sunday’s dessert is a blackberry-apple pie that won a County Fair Best of Show ribbon for me 35 years ago (1983). The pie also won many more contests and became a favorite of the family – except for the ones who don’t like blackberry seeds. See this post from 2008 on the pie contest: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2008/07/29/the-pie-contest/

BLACKBERRY-APPLE PIE

  • Servings: 9 inch pie - 6 to 8 servings
  • Print

Pastry for two-crust 9-inch pie (see link to my favorite recipe below)
3 cups blackberries
1 cup peeled & thinly sliced tart apple
3 Tblsp. quick-cooking tapioca
pinch of salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 Tblsp. butter
1 Tblsp. milk
1 Tblsp. sugar mixed with 1/8 tsp. cinnamon for topping
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

In large bowl combine berries, apples, tapioca, 1 cup sugar, and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon. Mix well and allow to set for five minutes.

Turn berry mixture in a pastry-lined 9-inch pan. Dot with butter, adjust top crust, cut vents and flute edges. Brush top with milk and lightly sprinkle with sugar/cinnamon mixture. Set pie pan on a larger flat pan to catch spills.

Bake @ 375 degrees F for 45-50 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

My favorite pie crust recipe is here in a post from 2007:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2007/11/15/my-sure-fire-pie-crust/

Also served: Corn-on-the-cob, grilled tilapia and a great salsa using summer produce – Peach-Pineapple-and-Tomato Salsa, found here from 2015: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2015/08/11/peach-pineapple-and-tomato-salsa/


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

This Sunday‘s dessert is a thin cake topped with fresh peaches and cinnamon/sugar, adapted from a German recipe. Each year, the first purchase of peaches from our local farm stand ends up in this kuchen. It’s a simple cake to put together and works just as well as a breakfast coffeecake.

The original post from 2007 is here: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2007/09/23/fresh-fruit-kuchen/

Fresh Peach Kuchen

  • Servings: 8 or 9 inch cake
  • Print

3 Tblsp. sour cream

3 Tblsp. milk

3 Tblps. vegetable oil

½ cup granulated sugar

½ tsp lemon peel

¼ tsp salt

1 cup + 2 Tblsp. all-purpose flour

¾ tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. baking soda

1 lb. fresh fruit, peeled and cored, in thin slices

Cinnamon topping: 2 Tblsp. granulated sugar and 1 tsp. cinnamon, mixed together

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

In medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, milk, oil, sugar and lemon peel. Mix together the salt, flour, baking powder and baking soda, and gradually stir into sour cream mixture. Place batter in greased 8 or 9-inch pan. The dough will be stiff and somewhat sticky. Dampen your hands with water and then press the dough into the pan.

Arrange the peach slices over the top of the cake.

Bake @ 350 degrees F for 20 minutes. Sprinkle cinnamon topping over top of cake and continue baking for 5 more minutes.

Place on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes before cutting.

Best when eaten warm from the oven.

Also served: Corn on the cob and  open-faced tuna sandwiches with fresh tomato and cheese – broiled to a golden brown. First posted in 2009: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2009/11/06/tuna-melt-and-butterscotch-kahlua-mousse/

Any kind of good, substantial bread would be fine, but I happened to have some Cracked Wheat bread I just made this week and this worked very well. From 2013: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2013/03/14/cracked-wheat-yeast-bread/


 

Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

This week’s Sunday dinner is different because my youngest granddaughter is celebrating her 15th birthday and we’ll be at her house for the occasion.

     The birthday girl and friend

I thought my older daughter and I could have something light here at home in the evening and made my favorite muffins. I always say if I were asked to contribute something to a luncheon for a queen or princess, I would serve these muffins. I would hope her majesty likes coffee because they have a strong coffee flavor. The chocolate chips and the cream cheese spread just add to the enjoyment. From 2010:   https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/10/30/cappuccino-chip-muffins-and-spread/

Cappuccino Muffins with Espresso Spread

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. instant espresso coffee powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup chocolate chips (I like Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips)
Preheat oven @ 375 degrees F

Grease or place paper cups or silicone liners in a 12-cup muffin tin

In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, espresso coffee powder, salt and cinnamon.

In another bowl, whisk together milk, butter, egg and vanilla until blended.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients; add milk mixture and stir just to combine. Stir in chocolate chips.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups; bake approximately 20 minutes @ 375 degrees F or until a cake tester inserted in the center of one muffin comes out clean.

Remove muffin tin to wire rack. Cool 5 minutes before removing muffins from cups. If using silicone liners, remove the muffins in the liners to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes, then remove from liners. Continue cooling muffins on the rack. 

These muffins freeze well.

They are delicious plain or extra-delicious served with an Espresso Spread:

ESPRESSO SPREAD

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 Tblsp. chocolate chips (Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Chips)
1 Tblsp. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. instant espresso powder
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Mixing can be done by hand, but a small food processor makes quick work of it. Place the chocolate chips in the food processor and grind into small pieces. Add sugar and espresso powder and process to blend. Add cream cheese and vanilla and process until smooth

Remove spread to a small bowl. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate. To serve, let stand 10 minutes at room temperature to soften.


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often as I used to, particularly in experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make a favorite dessert and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

This week’s dessert was an old favorite going back to the 1970s – Alabama Peanut Butter Pie. The original post is here:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/06/20/alabama-peanut-butter-pie/

Whenever I give my daughters a choice of pie, it is either Lemon Meringue or Alabama Peanut Butter. So, this week I decided on Peanut Butter Pie, which is not difficult to make but a little time-consuming.

ALABAMA PEANUT BUTTER PIE

Baked 9 inch pie shell 

Base and topping:

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter

Filling:

1/4 cup cornstarch
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
3 egg yolks
1 cup cold milk
1 cup hot milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 Tblsp. butter

Meringue:

3 egg whites
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
6 Tblsp. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F

To Make the Base and Topping: Mix confectioners’ sugar with peanut butter to form crumbs. Spread half of the mixture in the bottom of the baked pie shell. Reserve the other half for the topping.

To Make the Filling: In a medium size saucepan, whisk together the cornstarch, sugar and salt. Add the egg yolks, mixing well, then add the cup of cold milk. Whisk until smooth. Whisk in hot milk. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture begins to bubble. Reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking and whisking for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Let cool slightly while preparing the meringue.

To Make the Meringue: In a large mixer bowl with wire beater, beat egg whites until frothy. Add cream of tartar and beat until whites begin to thicken. Add sugar one tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff and glossy. Stir in vanilla.

Spoon the hot filling on top of the crumb base in the baked shell.

Spread the meringue on top of the filling, extending the meringue to the crust to seal.

Set the pie on a flat sheet to catch crumbs, and sprinkle the reserved peanut butter mixture on top.

Bake @ 325 degrees for 10 minutes to brown meringue. Cool on wire rack.

 

Also served: Shannon’s Curry Chicken Salad:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2008/06/27/shannons-curry-chicken-salad/
on toasted Spicy Honey Raisin Yeast Bread:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2007/09/29/spicy-honey-raisin-yeast-bread/


 

I found a really cute, free, easy pattern on Ravelry.com for a baby sweater and used it to make 3 different versions for the Children of Pine Ridge.

https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/presto-chango

The pattern is very clever in making a simple sweater with narrow sides and then adding a detachable panel. Buttons are sewn on the sweater portion and buttonholes are knitted into the panel. The first attempt was a 6-9 months baby sweater in a pretty “creamsicle” color, using the lace panel shown in the pattern. I’m not very good at knitting lace but this one turned out pretty well.

It’s very easy to make up another panel with a different design. I used a really nice cable bunny pattern to make this panel.

https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/bunny-cable-square

The second sweater was made with denim and light blue yarn for a 6-9 months boy size. In this case, I used snaps for the closure and just added a couple of buttons to the top of the panel for decoration.

The third pattern was an adaptation of a favorite baby sweater in which I made the sides narrow to accommodate the panel and used the bunny cable again along with nice buttons. This is for a 12-18 month child and has short sleeves for the spring/summer season.

This was an easy and fun pattern to use and adapt. A sweater along with several spare panels would make a nice gift.

 


Two years ago, I tried knitting once again after numerous unsuccessful attempts through the past 85+ years. This time, I got it – due mainly to YouTube tutorials, free Ravelry patterns and circular knitting needles. I especially like the Magic Loop which is a circular needle with a long cable. One of the features that intrigued me from the beginning was the possibility of knitting mittens (or other small items) two-at-a-time. I’m not a consistent knitter and like the idea of having two items match. Also, I hate to finish an item and then make an exact duplicate of the same thing – boring.

I’ve been doing well knitting two-at-a-time on flat items but had problems when casting on for something in the round – like mittens. There are many YouTube tutorials but the procedure looks and is awkward to do and, in my case, didn‘t produce a neatly ribbed cuff. In searching for a solution, I found a tutorial which worked for me but which I can’t find again to link. It’s basically casting on one cuff, pushing the cuff down and pulling the loop of cable out so there are an equal number of stitches on each side. Knit 5 rows and removing the cuff to two double-pointed needles, keeping the stitches and yarn exactly the same as they were originally,

Then, cast on the second cuff and repeat as for first cuff, pushing the cuff down and pulling the loop of cable out so there are an equal number of stitches on each side. The stitches on the double-pointed needles are carefully returned to the circular needle and everything is set to go to knit two-at-a-time. I attach a marker to the right hand front edge of the piece nearest the points of the needles to identify it.

This pair of teenage-sized mittens have a nice, neatly ribbed cuffs.

I use a simple mitten pattern that I’ve used many times so I’m not struggling with a pattern. The main problem I’ve had is to forget to drop the working yarn when completing one mitten and picking up the yarn that belongs to the second mitten. This only happens when transferring in the center of the two mittens.

Also, I find it easier to put the stitches for the thumb on holders, complete the bodies of the mittens, and then go back and do the thumbs individually.

I knit a lot of mittens for the Lakota Children of Pine Ridge and it’s nice to be able to do them with this technique.


This recipe goes back to 1997 when I found it on the back of a cornstarch box. I adapted it to my family’s tastes and we all loved it. 

DILLED CHICKEN MEDLEY

  • Servings: 2 generous servings
  • Print

3 medium potatoes, quartered

1 cup green beans

14.5 oz chicken broth, divided

2 Tblsp. cornstarch

1 Tblsp. fresh or 1 tsp. dried dill weed

1 Tblsp. oil

1 medium onion, sliced

1 cup shredded, cooked chicken breast

 

Precook potatoes and green beans to fork tender. Reserve

Stir together in a small bowl:   ¼ cup  of broth, cornstarch, dill until smooth. Set aside

In large skillet: Heat oil, add onion, cook for 3 minutes. Add chicken and cook until heated through.

Add remaining broth, potatoes and green beans to skillet. Simmer covered about 5 minutes or until heated through. Stir cornstarch mixture and add to skillet. Stirring constantly, bring to boil, boil 1 minute.  Serve immediately.