I am so thankful I had just enough cherries left over from making my Sour Cherry Cordial to make a pie. I just wish I’d picked more cherries! This was my first Cherry Pie I ever made and was it ever good! I think I got so excited over the fact that the pie came out so well I totally forgot to take any pictures until two big pieces were already cut! Whoops! So this is what is looked like.

dessert, pie, prudent living

Fresh Cherry Pie

The recipe came from my trusty Joy of Cooking cookbook. It’s a book I’ve been using forever and you can tell by looking at the pages. It was a gift from my mother one Christmas 34 years ago! It’s been well used.

cookbooks, cooking

Well loved Joy of Cooking

I used the recipe for Fresh Cherry Pie, simple and delicious!

dessert, pie, cherries

Fresh Cherry Pie Slice

Fresh Cherry Pie

Line a pie pan with your favorite pie dough. Wash, drain and pit:
4 cups of fresh, sour cherries.

Combine, then mix gently with cherries:
2 2/3 Tbsp quick cooking tapioca
1 ½ cups sugar
2 drops almond flavoring or 2 Tbsp kirch (optional)

Let the fruit mixture stand for 15 minutes. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Pour fruit into the pie shell and dot with:
2 Tbsp butter

Cover with a well pricked top or lattice. Bake 10 minutes at 450 degrees, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake about 40 minutes longer or until golden brown. One my girlfriends who also went cherry picking made a beautiful lattice topped pie. I’m sure it tasted as delicious as it looked! Hope she doesn’t mind my sharing her artistic talents!

dessert, pie, cherries, Recipe Box

Lattice Topped Cherry Pie


Linked to: DesignsbyGollum , NotYourOrdinaryRecipes, SimplySweetHome, HomeMaidSimple, SimpleLivingDianeBalch, AnnKroeker, MomTrends, ComfyInTheKitchen, JulieJewels1, AtThePicketFence, 21stCenturyHousewife, PredmeditatedLeftovers, Alli-n-Sons, LittleHouseInTheSuburbs, CountryMommaCooks, SixSistersStuff, Sweet-As-Suguar-Cookies, MyFavoriteFinds, MakeAheadMealsForBusyMoms, TheBetterMom, HomesteadRevival, ThePrairieHomestead, RaisingArrows, OurDelightfulHome, MamalDiane, Nap-TimeCreations, BlessedWithGrace, Mandy’sRecipeBox, BruCrew, PremeditatedLeftovers, 33ShadesOfGreen, CrazyForCrust, ItsABlogParty, BizzyBakes, TheNYMelroseFamily, TheKingsCourt1V, GingerSnapCrafts, FrugalFollies, EverydayTastes, MizHelensCountryCottage, ALittleNosh, AGlimpseInside, SomethingSwanky, SevenAlive, TheEaseOfFreeze, MeandMySweets, LifeAsMom, GooseberryPatch, FoodieFriendsFriday

Sour cherries grow in Vermont but their season is very short.

cordial, prudent pantry, prudent living

Sour cherries ready for picking

They also seem to be a fruit tree that is easily affected by the weather. As a result some years there is not any fruit produced. Our local orchard where we usually go to pick sour cherries did not have a harvest this year. Finding a local orchard that had sour cherries this summer proved to be very elusive. After calling around we found a pick your own orchard about an hour away. So five of us piled into the car and set off quite early to pick sour cherries.

sour cherries, farm

Pick Your Own

What a fun morning, the trees had a lot of fruit but it was mostly up in the tops of the trees so you really had to stretch to gather the fruit. I am thankful that I’m tall! It took a little over an hour to pick about seven pounds of cherries.

cherries, pick your own

Sour cherries

I knew exactly what I was going to make, Sour Cherry Cordial and a pie. More to come on the pie

I started making Sour Cherry Cordial several years ago and it is the perfect drink to enjoy in the middle of winter in front of the wood stove. It is the essence of summer! It is very easy to make and only requires patience, as you have to wait four months before you can enjoy it. If I make a batch now it will be ready to enjoy when the snow flies!

Sour Cherry Cordial

2 ½ pounds of sour cherries
3 cups vodka
3 cups of sugar

Put the vodka and washed, crushed cherries (without stems) in a large container.

cordial, sour cherries

Place sour cherries in a large container.

Let the cherry vodka mix sit in a cool dark place for one month. Shake occasionally.

cordial, liqueur

Cherries and vodka.

After a month, add the sugar, and let sit another month, shaking when you think of it. Strain, bottle, and age for four months.

Drink as an aperitif, or digestif, chilled or warm, in small glasses. We enjoy it over crushed ice.

liqueur, cordial

Be sure to label your bottle!

As you sip the cordial remember those warm sunny days of summer picking sour cherries in the orchard.sour cherry cordial, prudent living

cherries, cordial, prudent living

Sour cherries

Linked to: MizHelensCountryCottage, AGlimpseInside, Thrifty101, TheBrambleberryCottage, LifeAsMom, BlissfulRhythm, LauraWilliamsMusings, DeborahJeansDandelionHouse, LocalSugarHawaii, MeetPenny, TheNYMelroseFamily, LilSuburbanHomestead, NaturalMothersNetwork, TheMorrisTribe

I remember when I was first learning how to stay within a grocery budget. A good friend of mine took me grocery shopping with her. She had a large family and was very good at staying within her budget. What a fun time we had, and I learned a foolproof way to stay within your grocery budget. Pay for your groceries with cash!

cash, budget

My First Piggy Bank

If you only have a certain amount of cash with you there is no way your going to get to the checkout and over-spend! There are several ways to keep track of the money you are spending as you shop. Keep a small calculator with you and add up the groceries as you go along.

grocery shopping, budget

Calculator to add as you go along.

Perhaps you are very good with numbers and can do this in your head. I can’t keep numbers in my head so I need a piece of paper.

groceries, cash

Pen and Paper

What I do as I go along is round up the price so instead of writing down $1.99 I round it up to $2.00. For some reason this makes it easier for me as I shop.

Now this is not something I really like to do but I guarantee if you try this method you will stay within your budget and think twice about everything you put into your cart!

Shopping, budget, prudent living

grocery carts

Linked to: LearningTheFrugalLife, RaisingHomemakers, WeAreThatFamily, FeminieAdventures

Several months ago I gave my husband what I thought was an awesome gift. 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. After sitting in our living room for way too long the grill and attachment was finally set up outside. Recently it was put to use.

kettle pizza, grilling

Kettle Pizza Oven

Now you have to understand that my DH has been making pizza for years but never on a grill. First the dough was made. It was allowed to rise and then formed to fit on the pizza pan. Eventually we’ll use the pizza paddle and put the pizza right on the pizza stone but this time the pan was used.

We followed the directions and built a fire in the grill, the thermostat registered HOT.

grilling, pizza

Thermostat on the grill.

In went the pizza.

pizza, prudent living

Placing pizza into the oven.

After about 5-6 minutes it was done.

grilled pizza

Cooked tomato basil pizza

It was amazing! I don’t think we’ll go back to using the oven unless it’s in the middle of the winter and snowing outside!

We used a simple recipe for the dough

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.

pizza, homemade

Shaping the 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.

pizza, recipe

Add sauce to the pizza.

Add your cheese and toppings.

pizza, toppings

Cheese is added.

We had a tomato basil, with fresh basil!

herbs, basil, pizza

Tomato Basil Pizza

The finished pizza was awesome!

The Tomato Basil.

pizza, grilling

Tomato Basil Pizza Ready To Eat!

And a cheese with half pepperoni, not sure which was the favorite as both were delicious! We will be having this again soon.

pizza, grilling

Cheese & Pepperoni Pizza.

Linked to: LocalSugarHawaii, DesignsbyGollum, NotYourOrdinaryRecipes, SimplySweetHome, HomeMadeSimple, AnnKroeker, MomTrends, SimpleLivingDianeBalch, JulieJewels1,
Stuff-and-Nonsense , 21stCentryHousewifeDeborahJeansDandelionhouse, LittleHouseInTheSuburbs, PremeditatedLeftovers, AtThePicketFence, ComfyInTheKitchen, AmysFinerThings, LilSuburbanHomestead, CountryMommaCooks, SixSistersStuff, HomeMakersOnADime, theMorrisTribe, MsHappyHomemaker, MakeAheadMealsForBusyMoms, DelightfullyDowling, TheBetterMom, MySweetandSavory, OurDelightfulHome, PremditatedLeftovers, NapTimeCreations, BlessedWithGrace, MandysRecipeBox, InsideBruCrew, ItsABlogParty, KellyTheKitchenKop, TheKingsCourt14, GingerSnapCrafts, TheThriftyHome, Earning-my-Cape, BizzyBakes, ALittleNosh, ThesePeasTasteFunny, FoodieFriendsFriday, GooseberryPatch,EasyLife, 4YouWithLove, EasyLife, FoodieFriendsFriday, GooseberryPatch

I still have strawberries coming in from my garden.

berries, pantry, prudent pantry


As much as I enjoy strawberry jam I only want to have so many jars in the pantry for consumption and gifts!

preserving, prudent living

Strawberry Jam

We’ve been enjoying the strawberries for dessert and for breakfast and I still have some left. What to do? I decided to freeze a few bags. How wonderful it is to enjoy the fresh taste of strawberries in the middle of winter. One of my mother’s famous desserts is a homemade pound cake with strawberries!

Berries are so easy to freeze.  Wash, core,  and slice, cut in half or freeze whole.

berries, strawberries, prudent living

Coring strawberries

Sweeten to taste with honey or a little sugar. To freeze sweetened strawberries first slice the berries into a bowl, then toss gently with honey syrup or sugar and pack into your freezer container or bag.

To freeze whole strawberries, simply place them on a baking sheet and freeze until hard. This was the method I decided to use.

prudent pantry, berries

Place berries on a cookie sheet.

berries, preserving

Frozen strawberries.

Then transfer the berries to freezer bags.

preserving, prudent living

Sealing strawberries with a FoodSaver.

Once my strawberries were frozen solid I used my food sealer to keep them as fresh as possible.

berries, preserving

Ready for the freezer!

If I didn’t have 12 meat birds coming in a few weeks to fill my freezer I think I would freeze more strawberries!

Linked to: LauraWilliamsMusings

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