Money is tight right now. I’ve a few bucks in the bank but refused to shop for anything. I’m not sure where the next bit of money is coming from. So, instead of going and buying bread yesterday, I made Sopapilla and used that for lunch sandwiches.
I am still working on seasoning that pan I had to buy in Yellowstone, last time we went. It’s coming along nicely and will be ready for presenting to the Nanny to store away until she starts her own house/family within a few weeks.
It’s a great cutting tool! It made the circle shapes quite nicely.
Covered with Nutella and Raspberry Jam (made locally in a yummy restaurant in Rigby). The boys loved lunch their lunch yesterday.
All gone, mom!
Check out that smile! He likes it.
However, the jam wasn’t sugar-free so, after chowing down with the boys (and yes, it was a great sandwich-pizza thing called Sopapillas), I passed out cold for just about two hours. My sugars have been running high the last week or so, so I haven’t been able to get anything done except sitting on my rear. I’ve started nibbling throughout the day and have not paid attention to my sugars. I noticed yesterday that I have been getting up later and later, every day. I felt awful yesterday morning. I couldn’t figure it out. I spent the morning trying to diagnose my body and see if I was getting sick. I finally realized, my sugars were all over the map because I’ve been lax. Time to get that back in line so I can get back to where I started out my summer.
Speaking of food, I am still on the quest for the perfect pancakes. Mind you, I am good on a griddle. I can do amazing things with it and enjoy myself. Pancakes, eggs and grilled cheese, to name a few. However, I am trying to learn how to get rid of my griddle. I want to know how to cook anything I want/need in my cast iron pans. If electricity goes out, I’ll have to cook in that pan over an open fire. So, a’practicing I go.
The problem is, every single pancake mix I try to cook in a pan comes out burnt or falls to pieces. I bought “Mom’s Place Gluten-Free Pancake Mix” and it literally fell apart when I was trying to turn it over. When I actually got one to flip over, it had already burned.
I can make pancakes on an open fire. I can make pancakes on a griddle. Nearly every one I’ve tried in a pan comes out not even remotely close to edible. My boys have been troopers while I’ve been practicing. They eat everything I make and, sometimes, they even fight over who gets the burnt ones.
So, why do I have such a mess with this? I blame some of the pancake mixes.
On Saturday, I noticed that I hadn’t looked in my Betty Crocker cookbook for a pancake recipe. I’ve had this book since the early 1990s and until this summer, it is the only cookbook I’ve ever owned. I used that for whatever I wanted to know, when I wanted to know and didn’t buy all the latest and greatest cookbooks on the shelves. I was, at the time, bound and determined that, if it wasn’t in my Betty Crocker book, I wasn’t making it. Over the years, I’ve learned quite a few recipes that I haven’t found (or looked for) in the BC book, but I’ve never bought another.
With all the changes in my life this summer, I’ve started buying all the old cook books I can find. Learning from former generations. I now have quite a few “older” cookbooks and browse through them, looking for recipes. I’ve a little thought in my head of eventually putting all my favorites in one book and sharing it. I doubt I ever could, but my idea is to have the “standards” in a book. Not fancy and expensive foods to cook but general foods, things that cost little and feed as healthy as I can. We’re going to ignore the fiasco with the Sopapillas and non-sugar-free jam. The Sopapillas were actually pretty good. They got a lot of bubbles in them when I overworked the dough, however. That recipe would be added to my book. If I ever got the umph to put one together.
Anyway, on Saturday, I opened my Betty Crocker Cook Book and looked up pancakes. It gave me a recipe and I tried it. It looks like it went ok; however, still not as good as I can do on a griddle with any mix given me. I’m frustrated and looking for answers, if there are any y’all can share.
In the quest to save money, I’ve not gone grocery shopping. I’ve stuck with what is in the house. For dinner, we’ve had fresh vegetables from the Farmer’s Market and the Nanny’s mother. We don’t buy lettuce for a traditional salad. I don’t cook my vegetables. I think they taste a lot better just as they are and I’m trying to teach my boys to enjoy them that way, as well.
We went to the Farmer’s Market yesterday and I didn’t spend a whole lot. I had $50 for Farmer’s Market (my weekly allowance for such) and only spent $19. Fifteen of that was towards another pancake mix. This one is made in a blender and will be interesting to try. I already tried the “Mom’s Place Gluten-Free Pancake Mix” and failed. This one is gluten free as well.
After that, I decided we needed to go to some yard sales. We hadn’t done that all summer and I was curious about the near end-of-year offerings. I didn’t find a whole lot until the last one, roughly 2 blocks from my house. They had a patio set in good condition for $55. I have been wanting a patio set for two summers and this one was great. It had 4 chairs (with pads), a reasonably good sized table, an umbrella in great condition and the bucket to weigh down the umbrella (the kind you fill with sand or water).
My weekly “allowance” is $200 and, before we left the house, I stuck a fifty from that in the “sweet-spot” of my wallet. A pastor, quite some time ago, told me to do that for emergencies. In my mind, this was an emergency. It was a perfect set for my little family and very reasonably priced. I pulled it out and offered it to the lady. She accepted the $50 and I now have a patio set instead of camping chairs out back.
We aren’t using the umbrella because we got the canopy earlier this summer. We ate dinner on the patio set, last night. Spaghetti (the last of my frozen left overs) and fresh vegetables from the Farmer’s Market. The baby has to fold his chair pad in half to sit on so he’s big enough to sit and eat.
Brendan asked me why it was called a patio. I explained, “If it’s wood, it’s a deck. If it’s concrete, it’s a patio.” He said, “Oh.” I couldn’t think of any other answer.
I told Jen to take a vacation on Wednesday. She didn’t leave until Thursday night and then had to come back for “Code Brown,” as y’all know. Well, on Friday morning, she came running home. Apparently, where she was staying, everyone was still asleep and she was hungry for my breakfast. This time, I decided to make “Crullers.”
Caiden was trying to help me roll out the dough. It was fun to watch him try so hard.
The recipe said to curl them and put them in the deep fryer. That didn’t work out so well, so I got creative. I have 2 small children, so this was a lot more fun for them.
A Bison and a train.
A teddy bear. These shapes were simple cookie cutters I had in the house.
The recipe I found in this book from 1929 made quite a few “Crullers.” I ended sending the Nanny back on her vacation with a bowl full to feed her sister and family.
On Friday, while the boys were playing downstairs with me, I tried to finish piecing the Celtic Green Knot blanket. It wasn’t going so well. I’d done something wrong. So, on Thursday night, I put it away for later perusal and possibly saving and created this. Again, it came as a set with a pattern but I decided to change it up.
Since this picture was taken, I’ve added a blue 8″ square in the holes you see. I’ve sewn 2 rows together and have it sitting and waiting for me to continue. I’ll call it, “Country Patchwork,” since all the patterns are a country/western/cowboy theme. I’ll post more as I go.
I found a book on Amazon a few weeks back and purchased it. It is called, “Something from the Oven: Reinventing Dinner in 1950s America” by Laura Shapiro. I thought it was going to tell me what people ate in the 50s; however, it is actually more of a history lesson on the women in the kitchen in the 1950s. This book devotes one entire section on how Betty Crocker came to life in America. It’s fascinating and a recommended read for anyone interested in the history of women, the kitchen and food.
As of now, I’m skimming through it. I did read nearly all of the Betty Crocker section and was completely entranced! I’d like to find time to sit and enjoy the entire book. As soon as I finish the rest of my books!
I woke before my alarm clock, this morning. It was a change from the last week of feeling constantly wore out and tired. It felt good to be up and about, waiting for children to wake. Tomorrow, they start getting up at 7 a.m. to prepare for school, so tonight is the last night they get to stay up until the wee hours with me.
When I am done with this post, I’ll add a few more recipes to my recipe section. Feel free to check them out in about an hour.
Thank you for listening,