Tag Archives: simple

A Simpler Time – Random Thoughts Wednesday

There was a time not so long ago that life seemed so much simpler and slower paced.  Is it advanced technology that has changed our world?

I mean, I enjoy the internet and my cell phone, but must admit sometimes they can bring more stress than enjoyment.

Sometimes I feel I get information overload and have trouble concentrating.  There’s so many good websites and blogs out there with so many wonderful craft ideas, recipes, DIY projects, etc!  I want to do them all, then I’m disappointed when I can’t find the time or don’t have the money.

Really, I just want to “go back to the land” and try to raise and grow my own food.  To be more self-sufficient.

Does that sound crazy? Sounds like a lot of hard work, but that feeling of satisfaction would be so worth it.

I ran across this post over at Becoming Minimalist (dot) com.

What’s your thoughts?

10 Reasons to Escape Excessive Consumerism

(Please click on the title above to go to the original post.)

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Cuban Sandwich or Hot Ham

I saw a recipe for a Cuban sandwich the other day and it looked

so good!  I thought I’ve just got to make one of those,

so one day while home on lunch I threw

this together.  It was quite tasty and I will be

making this again soon.


As usual, there is a twist.  My mom always laughed at me ’cause if

I don’t have it, I’ll substitute something for it!  🙂

This sandwich is made using my low carb biscuit for the bread

and unfortunately I had no pork roast, so maybe I should

just call this a Hot Ham Sandwich?!


I really didn’t use a recipe (but I will give you a link at the end)

and used more of a process, so I will overwhelm you

with pics and how I did made it.

I thought the sandwich photographed nicely and I couldn’t

chose just one picture to share, so that’s why I’ve posted

several different angles here.


I made up my biscuit dough and actually fried it up like a pancake.

It made 2 good size pancakes or fried bread.

I sliced one of the “pancakes”  into and flipped it over and spread

mayo on both “crusts” of the bread.  I then layered

sliced ham, cheese, and pickles, sprinkled with sea salt and

smokehouse pepper and assembled the sandwich.  I proceeded to

spread with butter and toast on both sides since I don’t own

a sandwich press.  Yummo!


It was great as a quick lunch.  Also, this sandwich would make a

great party appetizer when cut into smaller pieces

or served along with soup would be dinner!

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Here’s more on the Cuban Sandwich:

Celebrate Cuban

Taste of Cuba

Latin Food at About dot Com

. . .

Partying over at:



Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

So simple yet so delicious!

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What to to with 2 nice bunches of very ripe bananas, but bake?!  This cake is made with a recipe I’ve been using since the early 90’s.   It is very simple, with few ingredients, but it is so delicious and moist!

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I usually top it with a Brown Sugar Glaze, but since I had cream cheese, this time I decided to make a traditional Cream Cheese Frosting for the cake.

Banck

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BANANA CAKE

1/2 cup shortening or butter (I used softened butter)

1 cup sugar (or Swerve)

2 eggs

1 cup (2 med) bananas, mashed

1 1/4 cups self rising flour (or low carb baking mix, or even Carbquik)

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Cream shortening (or butter) and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.   Add flour to mashed bananas and mix well.  Next, add the banana and flour mixture to the cake batter.  Stir well.  Pour into greased pan.  Bake at 350º for 45 minutes or until cake is browned on top and springs back to the touch.

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***NOTE- I used a 7 x 11 glass baking dish and the cake rose to the top of the dish and was fairly thick.  The layer could be sliced and a filling added to make a 2 layer cake.

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Cream Cheese Frosting

½ cup butter
1 (8 oz.) package of cream cheese
½ teaspoon of vanilla

3 ½ cups of powdered sugar (or Swerve Confectioners)

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In a medium sized mixing bowl cream the butter and cream cheese together.  Add the vanilla.  Slowly add the powdered sugar.  When you are adding the powdered sugar, use a low speed on the mixer.   After you have it all in, put up on a medium to high speed.   Mix the frosting until it is fluffy.

Make sure your cake is completely cooled and spread the cream cheese frosting on it.

More delicious cakes:

Layered Peanut Butter Cake

Applesauce Snack Cake (Egg Free)

Sour Cream Pound Cake

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake (sugar free)

Disclaimer: Some of the links contained in this post are affiliate links.  If you purchase through the links provided, I may receive a very small compensation at no extra cost to you.  Thanks!

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Peanut Butter Cookies (low carb) – updated recipe

In the fall, I get a hankering to bake, bake, bake!

Since I try to live the low carb lifestyle, that limits my baked goods choices.  When I want to bake cookies, this easy recipe always comes to mind.

I found this recipe several years ago in my Aunt Mary’s little recipe box.  Last night when I baked these little gems, I subbed Splenda for the sugar.   I have written the recipe here as it is on her recipe card and added my own tweaks.

LC PB cookies

 

Magic Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup creamy peanut butter

1 cup granulated sugar (I subbed granulated Splenda)

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla, optional

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

Mix the peanut butter and sugar well.  Add the egg.  Mix well.  (As the egg is added to the peanut butter mixture, it  causes the mixture to have a cookie dough texture)

Drop by rounded spoonfuls on baking sheet.  Using a fork, press the cookies down to give them that classic peanut butter cookie look.  Bake at 350º for 8-10 minutes.  Do not overcook.

 Cool and enjoy!

*UPDATE:  I added 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1/4 tsp baking powder to this recipe and the crumbly factor was much better.  This addition has been added to the recipe above.

If you can make 30 small cookies, using natural creamy peanut butter and granulated Splenda or granulated no calorie sweetener, then the nutritional info is as follows:

Serving size- 3 small cookiesCal – 152, Carbs 5  (fiber is 2, so net carbs is 3)

*The main source of carbs is the peanut butter.

PB cookies

Easy Ranch and Bacon Pasta Salad

I love a good pasta salad and if it’s easy and simple, that’s even better!

 

pasta salad

 

A few Sundays ago, my sister-in-law called to invite me to a family picnic and so I decided a simple pasta salad would be a great addition to the meal she had already prepared.

 

After the afternoon service, she, her husband, 2 daughters, 8 grandchildren and my family of 4 plus my baby great-nephew, all met at the park for an evening of food and family fun.

 

There was Homemade Vegetable Beef Soup, Cornbread, Sandwiches, Chips, Pasta Salad, Fresh Veggies and Ranch Dip, Sweet Tea, Banana Pudding, and Coconut Cake.

 

There’s no time like Family Time!

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More great homestyle recipes:

Vegetable Beef Soup with Southern Cornbread

Steak and Onion Salad with Creamy Homemade Dressing

Chocolate Fudge Pie

 

pasta2

Easy Ranch and Bacon Pasta Salad

1 box pasta, cooked ( I used Dreamfields Penne Rigate)

1 cup homemade ranch dressing

1/2 cup bacon pieces

4 oz shredded cheddar cheese

salt and pepper to taste

cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced – optional

Mix the cooked, drained and cooled pasta with the dressing, cheese, and bacon.  Place in pretty serving bowl.  Cover and chill before serving.

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Find Atkin’s  Low Carb Penne Pasta here.

Chicken and Dumplings and Aunt Mary

As children, my brothers and I stayed with my Great Aunt Mary during the summer and after school while my mom worked long hours at a local law firm.

Summers were so much longer back then and there was always so much to do.  Never a boring moment.  Aunt Mary would keep us busy, either by helping her or by letting us do a craft.  We made beautiful flowers out of colorful layers of toilet tissue (you could buy pale pink and baby blue toilet paper back then :)), colored on paper towels or paper plates, or made small trash cans using egg cartons, yarn, and a tin pie pan.

Sometimes we even sat out on the swing and guessed what color the next car would be.  We couldn’t do that today; too many cars fly up and down that road now.

On beautiful warm days, we played outside.  We might even help Aunt Mary hang the freshly washed laundry out on the line or maybe work in her garden.  Oh, how I remember the goodness that came from that little vegetable garden out in the back yard behind the chicken coop and shed.

Fresh green beans with baby whole new potatoes fried up in an iron skillet and seasoned with bacon grease.  Ripe, red tomatoes, peeled because Aunt Mary couldn’t chew the peeling, and cut into thick slices.  Slimey boiled okra, fried summer squash, green onions, purple hull peas, and in the fall,  roasted sweet potatoes.

That woman had a green thumb and was always working at canning fresh snapped green beans and red tomato relish.

auntmary

Lunch was her main meal of the day and in the evenings she usually had a few leftovers or some cornbread and gravy and sat at the table writing in her journal as the evening grew darker.

I remember as a child loving my Aunt Mary’s Chicken & Dumplings.  It was always a treat when we had Chicken & Dumplings.   Thanks for the memories, Aunt Mary.  You will forever live on in our hearts and minds.

Learn more about my Great Aunt Mary.

This is not her exact recipe, but very similar.

chicdump

This just happens to be my daughters’ favorite dish.  Rarely ever do I have any leftovers.

Chicken and Dumplings

1 (3 pound) whole chicken

salt and pepper to taste

3 cups water

2 cups all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons shortening

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup water

Directions:

In a heavy pot with a lid, or a crock pot,  place the chicken, salt, pepper and water.   Simmer all over low heat until tender, about 1 hour, or if using a crock pot, cook on low until done, maybe 3-4 hours.  (My crock pot low is like medium, it’s pretty hot)

Let chicken cool slightly in pot, then remove and take the meat off of the bones. Discard the bones and skin and skim excess fat off the broth if desired. Return broth and chicken pieces to the pot. Simmer over low heat while making the dumplings.

To Make Dumplings: In a medium mixing bowl, cut shortening into the flour and salt. Stir in 1/4 cup water (more if needed) to form a soft dough. Roll out dough on a floured surface, with a rolling-pin, until thin. Cut into 1 inch wide strips using a pizza cutter or knife. Tear off 1 -2  inch long pieces from these strips and drop into simmering broth.  Simmer for 10 minutes with the lid off, then 10 minutes more with the lid on.  Serve immediately.

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On this cold winter day, I’m partying over at

Simple Suppers

Sometimes some of the best suppers come from the hands of friends and family.

tendr2

Fried Pork Tenderloin, fresh from the H Farms in Kentucky and courtesy of my dear sister-in-law, Dorothy.  We never leave Dorothy’s without a cooler packed with meat and jars of home-canned greenbeans and vegetable soup. 

tenderloin

Longing for simplicity and lacking in time, I decided to fry the fresh pork tenderloin for supper.  It’s supper in the South, you know.  Dinner is at noon.  😀

The tomatoes are from my father’s garden.  He delivered those to me at work, along with a large bag of sweet bell peppers.  I will slice and freeze most of those for future use. 

To complete the simple meal, I threw together some drop biscuits using a pre-made baking mix.  My girls seem to think that drop biscuits are a gourmet treat.   Gone are the days of actually rolling the dough.  Those are just plain biscuits!  Whatever they want to think.  Drop biscuits are so easy, I don’t think I’ll explain the difference to them just yet.