Saturday, May 28, 2011

Vegetable Garden 2011

Gardening is something that everyone can do.  Even if it’s a window box of herbs in your kitchen or a large backyard garden, we can all do our part to grow our own food.  Not only will the homegrown goodness taste better, it will save you money and will reduce the impact of long-distance food. (Click here to find out how far a carrot travels to get to your plate.)  My garden this year has started with several containers at home with herbs and greens (lettuce and spinach) and cherry tomatoes.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Chocolate Chip Bar Cookies

Here’s a quick and easy recipe for chocolate chip cookies… 30 minutes from start to finish, including cooking time.  It doesn’t include time for them to cool, but they taste better warm anyway.  They are perfect for a school bake sale, church event, or simply if you are in the mood for a chocolate chip cookie.  Make some soon – you’ll be glad you did!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Homemade Chicken Stock

Growing up in the Agnew house, I remember that chicken and biscuits were always a special treat.  I would ask Mom why we couldn't have it more often, and she said that she didn't have any leftover chicken backs to make stock.  To explain, Papa always raised chickens in the summer, and we had to cut them up and package them for the freezer.  Mom would keep the backs separate just to make stock.  When she did have time and all the right ingredients she would make the delicious homemade stock, and cook us up a delicious treat for dinner.  During college, I started to make my own trips to the store for groceries, and was amazed to find one day that they sell chicken broth!  I was pretty upset that Mom had been holding out on me for so long.  So I bought myself some, and tried to recreate Mom's chicken and biscuits.  With the first bite, I realized what the big deal was about the homemade stock and homgrown chicken.  And I as I learn more about our food system, homemade will not only always taste better, it will be better for you. Mom, thank you for that lesson.  And now here's how I make homemade chicken stock.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Roasted Vegetable Enchiladas

First of all, I would like to send out very happy Mother's Day blessings to all mothers. And especially to my mom, who has made me the woman I am today, and has shared with me her love of cooking.  Thanks Mom!
Speaking of cooking... here is an easy week night recipe.  It is vegetarian, which is bold to say having grown up on a livestock farm... but it's probably a good idea for all of us to eat a little less meat.  I try to have at least one vegetarian dish a week, sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn't.  Michael Pollan calls it "Meatless Monday" or in our case, Meatless Tuesday or Wednesday or Thursday... whenever we get around to it.  Anyway, on to the recipe.  This one takes a little bit of time to roast the vegetables.  But you can always do that the night before and then assemble the rest of the dish and bake on the night you plan to eat it.  

Monday, May 2, 2011

Smoked Ham with a Strawberry Rhubarb Sauce

Now that it's been more than a week since Easter, I'm finally posting about our Easter ham this year.  It's more than a little ironic... I never used to eat ham at all.  In fact, Grandma would always make something extra so I wouldn't have to eat any.  And this year, I volunteered not only to cook the meat, but I ate my fair share too.  Here is a recipe for a special sauce to cook your ham in, it's a little different, but adds so much flavor to the meat.