Category Archives: Recipes

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you may remember the awesome gift I gave my husband one year. It was an attachment for the Weber grill that turned your grill into a pizza oven. It’s called a Kettle Pizza. I’ve always wanted an outdoor pizza oven and I figured this was the next best thing.

kettle pizza, grilling

Kettle Pizza Oven

Every summer we put it to good use. We haven’t perfected the pizzas on the grill yet but we’re getting close. My husband is an expert pizza maker, he’s got the crust down to a science. First he makes the dough and allows it to rise. While it’s rising he gets all the other ingredients ready.

Pizza ingredients

Pizza ingredients

While the dough was rising we followed the directions and built a fire in the grill. Adding some wood to the charcoal gives you a very hot fire.

Building a fire in the Weber

Building a fire in the Weber

Eventually the thermostat registered hot!

grilling, pizza

Thermostat on the grill.

As soon as the pizza “oven” was ready the pizza was formed.

Forming the dough.

Forming the dough.

First a little homemade pizza sauce.

pizza, recipe

Add sauce to the pizza.

Followed by sausage, fresh red peppers, a few roasted red peppers and a couple of hot peppers.

Sausage and Pepper Pizza

Sausage and Pepper Pizza

Then some mozzarella cheese, a little Parmesan and the pizza was ready to go in the oven.

Into the oven!

Into the oven!

Since the oven is so hot the pizza cooks rather quickly, 5-6 minutes. The trick is keeping an eye on it and occasionally giving it a spin so it cooks evenly.

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

It was delicious and we’re already thinking of which pizza we’ll try next.

Sausage and Pepper Pizza

Sausage and Pepper Pizza

Maybe a Clam and Bacon Pizza or maybe a Tomato Basil. So many choices!

Here is the simple recipe we use for the crust.

2 cups flour
1 ¼ tsp instant yeast
¾ tsp salt
1 Tbsp olive oil
About ½ to ¾ cup warm water

Combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir in the olive oil. Stir in the warm water, you may not need all of the water so add slowly. Turn the dough onto your work surface and knead until smooth and shiny. Place the dough in a covered, oiled bowl to rise until double in bulk.

pizza, recipe box, prudent living

Pizza dough rising

Turn dough onto a floured surface to shape your pizza.Form pizza dough.

If your dough doesn’t want to stretch let it rest a few moments and try again. Once the dough is shaped, add a little sauce, spread lightly. Add your cheese and toppings. Bake in the oven or in your Kettle Pizza Oven and enjoy!

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In June we can find an abundance of wild strawberries in our fields.

Vermont, spring, prudent living

Our field

They are tiny but packed with flavor and they make the best strawberry muffins.

recipe box, muffins

Tiny strawberries

Something about the tiny size and the burst of strawberry flavor just enhances the taste of the muffins. My husband has a real fondness for these muffins and each year he will diligently spend an hour or more searching and picking these tiny little berries.wild strawberries In exchange I use them to bake up a batch of his favorite Wild Strawberry Spice Muffins.

We each enjoyed a few and then I froze the rest to enjoy later this year.

muffins, berry, strawberries

Wild Strawberry Spice Muffin

The strawberries are short lived and if you don’t go right out and pick them the birds will eat them up.

This recipe would be wonderful with blueberries or even regular strawberries but I use it each year to make our delicious Wild Strawberry Spice Muffins!

Wild Strawberry Spice Muffins

1 ¾ cup flour
½ cup sugar
2 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 egg, lightly beaten
¾ cup milk
1/3 cup butter
1 cup wild strawberries

Topping (optional)

1 Tbsp sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon

muffin ingredientsIn a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Combine the egg and milk. Add the egg mixture and butter to the dry ingredients; stir just until moistened. Fold in the strawberries.fold in the strawberries

Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full.

batter, muffins

Muffin tin filled 2/3rds full.

Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle over the batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Cool for five minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.muffins cooling Makes 1 dozen.strawberry muffin

Enjoy!

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Sesame Sweet Chicken is another family favorite.

Sesame Sweet Chicken

Sesame Sweet Chicken

I have been making this recipe for years. It’s a perfect marinade for chicken when you’re hosting a group of friends and you’re planning to cook on the grill. I mix up the marinade the day before the party. Then I pound the chicken thin and place in a bowl or large glass dish. Cover the chicken with the marinade and turn to coat it well. Cover with plastic and marinate overnight. If you are in a rush you can marinate it for just an hour but overnight is best!

Sesame Sweet Chicken

3 pounds of chicken (boneless thighs or breasts)
½ cup hoisin sauce
¼ cup honey
3 Tbsp lime juice
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp chopped ginger
1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp paprika

Arrange the chicken in a bowl or shallow dish. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over your chicken. Coat the chicken well and cover with plastic wrap. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour, overnight is better.

Marinating chicken.

Marinating chicken.

Prepare your grill. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill for about five per side or until done. Brush with marinade while cooking. Serve hot.

Sesame Sweet Chicken

Sesame Sweet Chicken

Makes about 6 servings and is easily doubled or even tripled.

Sesame Sweet Chicken, perfect for your next potluck meal!

Sesame Sweet Chicken, perfect for your next  meal!

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I have never tried Dandelion wine until last summer when friends of ours brought over a bottle to share. It was sweet and nice to sip on at the end of our dinner. They talked about how easy it was to make and I decided to give it a try myself. I always love making something new! Dandelions are also high in calcium, protein and vitamin A, not to mention the medicinal benefits to dandelion wine. Plus, it’s so easy to make!Dandelions

Collecting the dandelions was easy – we have a field full! When collecting the blossoms be sure not to use any flowers that have been sprayed with pesticides! You will need about 3 quarts of dandelion flowers. We collected them in the morning so the blooms were fresh. Separate the yellow flowers from the green sepals (the little green leaves under the flowers). The green sepals are bitter in flavor and you don’t want them to put that flavor into your wine!Collecting Dandelions

Put the flower petals in a one-gallon crock and pour 1 gallon of boiling water over them. Make sure the dandelion flowers are fully covered and soaking in the boiling water. Cover and steep for three days.Dandelion petals in the pot.

After three days prepare the following:Oranges and lemon

2 oranges remove the zest and cut the oranges into slices. (You can also just use the peels, which is what we did)
1 lemon, remove the zest and cut into slices. (You can also just use the peels, which is what we did)Orange and lemon slices.

After three days pour the flower water mixture into a large pot and add the zest of the oranges and the lemon. Bring to a boil, remove from the heat and then strain out the solids. Add 3 pounds of sugar to the pot, stir to dissolve and allow the mixture to cool.

Once the liquid has cooled add the orange and lemon slices and add 1 pound of raisins. Also add 1 package of wine yeast. Put the mixture back into your clean crock and allow to bubble for 2 days to a week.In the crock Once fermentation is complete pour the mixture into your fermentation container. Luckily my husband is a home brewer and I was able to use one of his bottles.Fermentation bottle We allowed the liquid to sit for a couple of weeks until there was no longer any bubbling.

When the fermentation has completely stopped, transfer to sterilized bottles and cap or fit with corks.Dandelion Wine Let stand for six months to a year.Dandelion Wine

Enjoy in front of the woodstove this winter or wait to enjoy it by the bonfire next summer!Dandelion Wine

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Sometimes you just want to enjoy some comfort food. This is one of those recipes that isn’t fancy and doesn’t require n expensive cut of meat. Just simple home cooking.

Country Fried Steak 'n' Gravy

Country Fried Steak ‘n’ Gravy

Gram’s Country Fried Steak ‘n’ Gravy

3 cups of beef broth (preferably homemade)
All-purpose flour seasoned with garlic salt and pepper
2 eggs, beaten
Breadcrumbs, optional
1 pound cubed steak, cut into 3-4 smaller pieces.
3 Tbsp butter
1 ½ large onions
¼ cup flour

Place the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs into three separate bowls.

Eggs, flour and breadcrumbs.

Eggs, flour and breadcrumbs.

Coat the steak pieces with egg; then generously par both sides with flour, then with the read crumbs.

Coat with egg, flour and bread crumbs.

Coat with egg, flour and bread crumbs.

In a deep frying pan, hat the butter then add the steak pieces. Fry until brown on both sides. Remove steaks from the pan.

Fry until brown.

Fry until brown.

Add diced onion and cook until the onions are lightly browned. Add the flour and stir to coat the onions. Then add your beef broth. Stir and heat until bubbly. Add seasonings to taste. Place the steaks back in the pan and cover with the gravy. Cover and simmer for 20 -30 minutes. Tastes great with mashed potatoes or noodles.

Country Fried Steak 'n' Gravy

Country Fried Steak ‘n’ Gravy

 

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It’s funny, growing up my parents cooked on the grill but it was always hot dogs and hamburgers and the occasional steak. I don’t ever remember them cooking anything like ribs or barbecued chicken. When I was first married I discovered ribs and how delicious they were!

Country Style Spareribs

Country Style Spareribs

I also started making my own barbecue sauce. Today I am going to share that recipe with you.

Ingredients for barbecue sauce.

Ingredients for barbecue sauce.

Summer is the perfect time of year to enjoy grilled meats with barbecue sauce. It is important to baste with the barbecue sauce the last 15 minutes of cooking. Longer cooking will make the spices bitter!

Homemade barbecue sauce.

Homemade barbecue sauce.

Barbecue Sauce

Sauté in 1 Tbsp of drippings or other fat, ¼ cup of chopped onions. Sauté the onions until brown.

Saute onions

Saute onions

Add and simmer for 20 minutes:

½ cup water
2 Tbsp vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
¼ cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 cup of Chili sauce (the kind found near the ketchup or use homemade)
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp paprika
¼ tsp pepper
1 tsp mustard (can also use either chili or curry powder for variation)

This recipes makes about 1 ½ cups of barbecue sauce. It is excellent on Country Style Spare Ribs!

Homemade barbecue sauce

Homemade barbecue sauce

When cooking country style ribs I parboil the ribs for about 3-4 minutes before placing on the grill.

Country Style Spareribs

Country Style Spareribs

The ribs are then cooked about 4-5 minutes on a side. For the last few minutes barbecue sauce is added.Barbecue sauce

Country style ribs are delicious with sautéed kale.

Ribs with homemade barbecue sauce.

Ribs with homemade barbecue sauce.

 

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