Monday, March 25, 2013

From The Archives - HEARTH AND HOME - April 10, 2002

Good Afternoon, Sweet Sisters!

How are you all today? It's soooo good to be with you again!

I'm pleased to announce that this edition of HEARTH AND HOME will feature a special recipe section! I went to the Mennonite store and stocked up on whole grains and lots of good-for-you ingredients and I've really been working at making meals for my family that are healthy, nutritious, AND delicious. In the process I've been busy trying out lots of new recipes and I'm so excited to finally be sharing some of them with YOU! I am giving you the recipes the way that I made them making healthy changes where appropriate. Most of these are sure to become family favorites at our house! I hope that your family enjoys these good (and good-for-you) recipes as much as our family has been enjoying them!

Ready or not, Ladies, here we go...

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RECIPES
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Now, if you remember, in the last HEARTH AND HOME I shared the recipe for the home-made Bisquick mix. I found a great, quick and easy recipe to use that with. Here it is:

HEARTY CHICKEN POT PIE

1 package (16 oz.) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
1 cup cut-up cooked chicken
1 can (10 3/4 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup skim milk
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 cup Bisquick mix(I used the home-made Bisquick mix.)
1/2 cup skim milk
1 egg

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix vegetables, chicken, 1/2 cup milk, and soup in a 2-quart casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.

Stir remaining ingredients in a small bowl with fork until blended. Pour over vegetable/chicken mixture in casserole dish.

Bake 30 minutes or until golden brown.

OAT PANCAKES

1 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cup skim milk
1/4 c. olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Combine oats, flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center. Combine egg, milk, oil, and lemon juice; pour into well and stir until moistened. Pour batter by 1/4
cupfuls onto a hot sprayed with cooking spray griddle; turn when bubbles form on top of pancakes. Cook until second side is golden brown. Yield: 6 servings.

RUSTIC OATS AND WHEAT BREAD

(My daughter, Amanda, made this one for supper yesterday and it turned out beautifully! This is THE BEST bread we've ever made! It will be a regular feature on our supper table from now on.)

1 cup rolled wheat
1/4 firmly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups boiling water
1/4 cup molasses
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 packages active dry yeast
2/3 cup water heated to 105 to 115 degrees F.
4 3/4 to 5 3/4 cups unbleached flour
1 cup regular old-fashioned oats

Topping

1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon old-fashioned oats

Spray two cookie sheets with cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine rolled wheat, brown sugar, salt, 2 cups boiling water molasses and oil; mix well. Cool to 105 to 115 degrees F. In small bowl, dissolve yeast in 2/3 cup water. Add to cooled rolled wheat mixture. Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off. Add 2 cups flour to rolled wheat mixture. Blend at low speed until moistened; beat 2 minutes at medium speed. By hand, stir in 1 cup regular oats and 2 1/4 to 2
3/4 cups flour until dough pulls cleanly away from sides of bowl.

On floured surface, knead in 1/2 to 1 cup flour until dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place dough in greased bowl; cover loosely with greased plastic wrap and cloth towel. Let rise in warm place (80 to 85 degrees F.) until light and doubled in size, about 45 to 60 minutes.

Punch dough down several times to remove all air bubbles. Divide dough in half; shape into balls. Place on sprayed cookie sheets. With sharp knife, slash a 1/4 inch deep lattice design in top of each
loaf. Cover; let rise in warm place until light and doubled in size, about 45 to 60 minutes.

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Brush loaves with beaten egg; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon regular oats. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes or until deep golden brown and loaves sound hollow when
lightly tapped. Remove from cookie sheets; cool on wire racks. Makes 2 (16 slice) loaves.

TAPIOCA PUDDING

1/3 cup granulated tapioca
1/3 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg beaten
2 3/4 cup skim milk

Mix all ingredients together. Bring to a full boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add 3/4 teaspoon vanilla. Cool and serve.

HIGH FIBER BRAN MUFFINS

(I can't seem to make enough of these! We love them for breakfast! And I enjoy my morning muffin with a nice cup of hot tea!)

1 cup wheat bran
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup skim milk
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 egg, beaten
1 apple, chopped
a handful of chopped nuts

Stir all ingredients together. Spoon into a muffin tin that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Bake in preheated 400 degree F. oven for 15 minutes or unti muffins are done. Makes 12 wonderfully delicious muffins!

NONGAT BROWNIES

1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup sugar
9 tablespoons applesauce
1 tablespoon vanilla

Spray an 8 x 8 square baking pan with cooking spray and set aside. Combine flour, cocoa, and salt. Mix well. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, applesauce, and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture until just blended. Do not over mix. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 25 minutes at 325 degrees or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool at least 15 minutes before cutting.

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LAUNDRY TIPS
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As you throw in those loads,
And close the lid fast,
Say a quick prayer of blessing,
For the recipients of this task.

*Plan your washing days and start washing early in the day.

*Use cold water if possible, especially on colored clothes, as this will help them to stay bright longer.

*Wash full loads rather than small ones. This saves energy and your appliances as well.

*In large familes try this to help keep track of whose clothes belong to who. Use a permanent marker to mark the clothing with a dot system. The oldest child gets one dot, the second child gets two dots, etc. Even mark dots on the bottom of white socks. As children outgrow the clothing, just add another dot and pass it down!

*Try using hair spray to remove pen marks.

*Forgot to take out the clothes in the dryer? Simply throw in a damp towel and turn on the dry again for a few minutes. The dampness from the towel will freshen the load and remove any wrinkles.

*Keep baskets in the laundry room, labled however you want your laundry sorted...for example...WHITE, LIGHT, DARK, RED, and COLD WATER. Have each family member sort their dirty laundry appropriately into the baskets. Then, after the clothes are washed and dried, sort the clothes into baskets (one for each member of your family), then let them be responsible for folding, hanging, and putting away their own clothes. The basket is to be kept in their room to refill with dirty clothes.

*Schedule one day a week for ironing, or three 15-minute time slots per week. This will relieve your stress level and eliminate having to iron at the last minute before you leave the house.

*Try using peroxide to remove blood stains.

*Label your linen closet shelves so that whoever puts the sheets and towels away will know just the right spot for them. This prevents confusion, keeps your closet looking neat, and saves tiem in finding
king-size or twin-size.

*When your iron sticks, sprinkle a little salt onto a piece of waxed paper and run the hot iron over it. Rough, sticky spots will disappear as if by magic.

*Instead of using expensive fabric-softner, pour one-fourth cup WHITE vinegar in the last rinse of the washing cycle. This eliminates static cling, helps remove wrinkles, gives clothes a fresh smell by
removing soap, and cleans the drains of the washer by removing soap scum and lint.

*If your steam iron clogs up, fill it with a mixture of one-fourth cup of vinegar and one cup of water and let it stand overnight. Heat the iron the next day. Remove the mixture and rinse with clean water.

*After the load of laundry is finished drying, fabric softener sheets have one more wonderful purpose...taking the dust off television and computer screens. Their anti-static quality easily removes dust and keeps it off longer.

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DOLLARS AND SENSE
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In our materialistic society, we're used to family togetherness costing a fortune...movies, amusement parks, shopping at the mall, etc. But, family togetherness doesn't have to be expensive. With a
little planning, low-cost quality family time is not only possible, it's cheap and fulfilling. Here are a few ideas to try implementing in your home:

*Wherever you go, take your children along, whether running to the grocery store or filling up the car with gas. God's plan included that parents be their children's teachers. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 says, "And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Make this working time together a teaching time, too!

*Make a point of sitting down and eating together as a family at least once per day...preferrably at the evening meal.

*Think of something that you love to do, but haven't done for a long time. Sewing? Woodworking? Stamp collecting? Crafts? Bird Watching? Camping? Fishing? Listening to a good book on tape? Introduce your passions to your family and see what "clicks."

*Begin a family fun night. Let family members take turns planning the activities and menus for your weekly family nights. You might enjoy board games, charades, singing or playing instruments together, going through old photo albums, working on a 1,000-piece puzzle, having a water balloon fight, playing flashlight tag, catching lightening bugs, flying a kite, or stargazing. The possibilities are endless!

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A SPECIAL EASTER ACTIVITY TO SHARE WITH YOUR CHILDREN
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This is a great recipe to teach your Children the REAL story of Easter. That the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior is not dead but has Risen. We serve a Risen Savior......

This activity can be done as a "family" or for Sunday School. Of course the Sunday School option might be to hand it out to the class with a note to the parents.

You will need:
1 cup whole pecans
1 teaspoon vinegar
3 egg whites
a pinch salt
1 cup sugar
a zipper baggy
1 wooden spoon
scotch tape
Bible

Instructions:
These are to be made the evening before Easter. Preheat oven to 300F. *** (this is very important --- don't wait until you are half done with the recipe). Place pecans in zipper baggy and let children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Explain that after Jesus was arrested. He
was beaten by the Roman soldiers. Read: John 19:1-3

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon vinegar into mixing bowl. Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross He was given vinegar to drink. Read: John 19:28-30

Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life. Read: John 10:10&11

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin. Read: Luke 23:27

So far the ingredients are not very appetizing. Add 1 cup sugar. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him. Read: Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus. Read: Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoon onto waxed paper covered cookie sheet. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid. Read: Matthew 27:57-60

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF.

Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door. Explain that Jesus tomb was sealed. Read: Matthew 27:65-66

GO TO BED!

Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed. Read: John 16:20&22

On Resurrection Sunday (Easter) morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first Easter Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty. Read: Matthew 28:1-9

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Well, Ladies, that's it for this time! I hope to be with you again soon. Until then...you all take care and keep the home fires burning! God bless you!

Love and Hugs,
~Rebecca

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