I did so much baking this week that I set off a massive allergy attack with the clouds of flour billowing around the kitchen and spent a couple of days red-nosed and sniffly. But I’m still smiling because I tested a couple of new recipes, enjoyed some goodies from tried-and-true recipes, and had other fun besides!
(And by the way, thanks to lots of homemade miracle salve, I no longer look like I should be leading Santa’s sleigh!)
Carb-loading was the theme earlier this week. I made four loaves of bread using this recipe from The Prudent Homemaker. I also made my favorite quick & easy pizza crust recipe into “scrolls” as suggested by Annabel at The Bluebirds are Nesting. I usually save the scroll shape for cinnamon rolls, but Annabel’s photos of her main dish scrolls with savory fillings looked so good that I thought I’d try it with BBQ chicken filling. The shaping went faster than my usual calzone/hand pie shape and the results were just as portable. Perfect!
I tried a new-to-me Old Fashioned Butter Cake recipe from 77 Easy Recipes. (Get the recipe here.) Jay’s Great-aunt’s pound cake recipe has been in my file for years, but I’d never made a true butter cake before. We ended up really liking it despite my nearly over-baking it.
If you’re not familiar with butter cake, this is not of the ooey-gooey variety but has a texture more like a pound cake or even a quick bread. The recipe said to bake it for an hour an a half. I checked it after an hour and twenty minutes and was glad I did. Next time I’ll check it even sooner. The cake ended up with a heavy crust, almost crisp right out of the oven, that softened beautifully after overnight storage in an air-tight container. The cake itself is dense and heavy but tasty. My husband went back for seconds of warm cake and said he liked the crisp crust, but he still ate it the next day!
I also made a couple of chocolate cakes using my father’s recipe. One cake was served to company and the other went in the freezer for future enjoyment.
My other new recipe this week was General Tso’s Slow Cooker Chicken. The recipe is available here. This is a story of God knowing what we’d need before we did.
I had planned to put the chicken in the crock pot yesterday morning and let it cook all day while I wrote this blog post, ran errands, and did other chores. Then my pastor husband and I got word that we needed to make an immediate hospital visit* in another city. We hurried off and did what needed doing all day while supper simmered in the crock pot. I added broccoli rather than peas when we got home and thankfully our evening meal was accomplished with minimal fuss. We were sufficiently tired that I didn’t think to get a picture to show you, but let’s just say we’ll be adding this recipe to the family meal rotation. (Our unexpected trip to another city is also why this post is a day late. I’m sorry!)
This experience also reminds me that I need to get some more freezer meals prepped.
Perhaps I’ve mentioned that my family took a short-term mission trip to Colombia in 2009 when my children were 9 and 13 years old. Since that time we’ve sponsored a young lady at one of the schools there. She happens to be about my daughter’s age and we’ve sort of watched the two girls grow up together through the sponsorship photos and letters we receive. Our annual report arrived this week and included a drawing and a note from our sponsored student, written in English, no less, and mentioning something we’d sent to her years ago. We were so tickled to hear from her!
My other fun came from gathering supplies to work on Valentine’s Day corsages. (Read about past corsage projects here.) This year I’m doing white on white with gold ribbon. It will take some time to get them all done, but I’ll share photos when I can.
New Year’s Goals
I’ve almost finished knitting another set of bamboo stitch wristers and am getting supplies together to try another kind of soap. Details will be forthcoming if the projects turn out! I’m still working on reading through the Bible in 90 days, reading that cookbook I’ve mentioned, and keeping up on my 52 Week Savings Challenge while adding change to the baby bottle for our local pregnancy resource center.
What are you smiling about this week?
*Naturally I can’t share details about the hospital visit, but I’m sure the family would appreciate your prayers. Thanks!
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