Showing posts from 2019

Good Morning Friends! Changes Ahead

I am home now and my new grandson arrived safe and sound. We also got to visit with our other daughters and grandsons and that was a blessing to us.
It was also a very long drive in a short time. We drove down to an area in California right outside of San Diego. That was over 1000 miles of driving to get there. We drove around a lot while we were there. Then headed home. In all we drove 2500 miles in one week.
All that time driving gave me a lot of time to think. My husband and I have some changes coming in our life and a lot of preparation to do for this.
I've decided that I need to take a blogging break for a few weeks.
I made my very first blog post in December of 2005. Seems crazy to me that I've been blogging for this long. By December of this year I will have been blogging for 14 years. I started my website the year before. I've had a 15 year presence on the internet and I do feel an extended break is in order for me at this time.
My goal is to come back at some poin…

Canning Salsa

The end of summer always meant a lot of tomatoes for me. I would plant somewhere around 30 roma type tomato plants and that would yield a lot of tomatoes each year!  Each year salsa was always on my list. 

A friend of mine (Leah) gave me her tried and true salsa recipe and we loved it. It was the recipe I used over and over again.

Salsa for Canning…
10 lbs tomatoes, chopped
6 medium onions, chopped
3 cups bell peppers (any kind), chopped
12 jalapeno peppers, chopped and seeded
5 chili peppers, chopped and seeded (this will make it spicy or milder, depending on the peppers you choose)
10 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 1/3 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup salt
2 tsp pepper
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp lime juice
3 cans tomato paste (the bigger cans, not the tiny ones)
Combine all ingredients except tomato paste in a large stock pot. Simmer approximately 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomato paste and mix well. Simmer another 20 minutes or so. At …

Homemade Ranch Dressing

Ranch dressing has always been a favorite at our house. For many years I made my own. It's easy to make and a good frugal alternative to buying store bought.

I have a couple different ways I want to share on how to do this. 

One is mixing up a batch as you need it and the other is making a powdered mix to have hand when you want a batch. 

For starters here is my basic ranch dressing recipe..

Ranch Dressing
1 cup mayonnaise ½ c sour cream ½  cup milk, buttermilk is fine too 1 T lemon juice 1 t. onion powder ½ t. (slightly heaping) minced garlic, I buy the kind in the jar 2 t. parsley dash dill weed ½ t. salt ½ t. seasoning salt dash of pepper
Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  Allow to sit in fridge for a little while to thicken and allow flavors to blend.

When my kids were at home I use to mix this up in bulk. I would quadruple the recipe and make it in my Bosch (or Kitchenaid) mixer.

I would add the mayo and sour cream to the mixer and mix to combine, then add the liquid ingredients and mix until…

Zucchini Pineapple for Canning

Garden season usually means a lot of zucchini! I am forever looking for ways to use it and preserve it. This recipe was a favorite of mine. **************************************
If you have an abundance of zucchini or yellow squash this is a great way to use it up!  Zucchini pineapple can be used in place of crushed pineapple. I also mix it with equal parts bbq sauce to go over meatballs, meatloaf or chicken. It can also be mixed into fruit salads. Lots of possibilities!

(I had a large amount of yellow summer squash and that is why mine is all yellow in color.  If you use zucchini you will have green specks and that is ok too!)

8 quarts grated zucchini
1 #10 can pineapple chunks in juice
6 cups sugar
3 cups lemon juice

Combine all ingredients (do not drain pineapple).. heat to a boiling, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Ladle hot mixture into hot pint jars and can in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.
Use in place of recipes that call for crushed pineapple.
This will make approx. 15 p…

Homemade Instant Oatmeal

This is another favorite from The Family Homestead that I wanted to share with you.
Although fall is a ways off, it's not to early to be thinking of quick warm breakfast foods. Homemade Instant Oatmeal is easy to make and frugal as well. I made this quite often over the years for my family and it is great to have on hand.  This recipe makes a lot but would be easy to cut in half as well. It will fill a one gallon container. Below the recipe are pictures to show you how to make it.

Instant Oatmeal Mix
Crystal Miller

20 cups quick cooking oats
2 cup powdered milk
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 tablespoon salt

Take about half of the oats and run them through a blender or food processor to make them smaller… you don’t want flour though! Then mix with the rest of the ingredients. I put this in gallon size jar for storage. This is much easier to use with a big family than little packets. Little packets of things just do not work at my house! For serving we do not really measure this. We sco…

Canning Spaghetti Sauce

If your garden is overflowing with tomatoes you might like to can a batch of spaghetti sauce!

You'll need 20#'s of tomatoes for this recipe. 

My favorite type of tomatoes are Roma Tomatoes. They are not as juicy as other varieties and are great for all types of tomato based sauces. 
I also do not peel my tomatoes. I cut them up and puree them in my food processor. I've never had a problem doing it this way. It saves a LOT of time! 
After pureeing the tomatoes I put everything in a large 14 quart pot along with more of the ingredients and let this simmer away for a couple hours..
Add the tomato paste and it's ready to can up! Due to the vinegar and lemon juice in this recipe it can be canned in a boiling water bath. 
Remember to use safe, basic canning procedures. If you're not familiar with water bath canning you can find information HERE

Spaghetti Sauce (for canning)

20lbs tomatoes
3 medium onions, chopped

Whole Wheat Oat Dinner Rolls

Good Morning Friends!
I am busy this week getting ready to head to California soon for the birth of our grandson. I'm not sure yet just what date we are leaving as babies have a way of coming when they are ready :). 
But, my daughter is a few days past her due date so I know it won't be long. I figured the best choice for me was to set up blog posts for the next week or so. 
Right now I need to focus on packing, having family stay at the house while we are gone, keeping the animals fed and so forth. 
I decided I'd share some of the old favorite recipes from my website. I have plans soon to shut the website down and it will be nice to be able to find the favorites here on my blog. 

I made this recipe for my family hundreds of times (or so it seemed :) when they were all home. It was a big family favorite.

Whole Wheat Oat Dinner Rolls  ~makes 24 rolls Crystal Miller

2 1/3 cups water 1 cup oats 3T butter 2 T yeast 2/3 cup Sucanat (can use brown sugar) 1 ½ t salt 3 cups whole wheat flour …

Grocery Haul for Two

Good Morning!!
This week I made trips to both Winco and Costco.  My first stop was Winco:

 I picked up the usual salad veggies and fruit. The whole grain angel hair pasta was on sale for .97 cents for a 16oz box so I picked up 2 of them. I also bought a jar of alfredo sauce. I had used up all the ones on my pantry shelf. 

 I picked up a package of shrimp on skewers (which were so good on the grill brushed with garlic butter :), pepperoni, half & half and some frozen items. I was out of peas and carrots in the freezer and I like to have them on hand for pot pie or fried rice. I was out of the cube style hash browns so I bought 3 of them. The name brand tater tots (Ore-Ida) were on sale and actually less expensive than the store brand. It was a 5lb bag, but that will work fine and I won't have to buy them for quite a while! 

Total from Winco: $52

The next stop was Costco:

This haul was pretty simple as well. I picked up a 6lb bag of beef patties and a bag of hamburger buns. Dawn dish …

Wednesday on the Homestead

Good Morning! I slept in a bit this morning and it felt great. I've been getting up to get outside and walk/run before it gets to hot. Today is not supposed to be as warm so I figured I could sleep in and get out later on. 
It's been a relatively easy going week.  I've mostly kept busy with home things. We'll be leaving soon to go down to California to be with our daughter who is due to have a baby. We are hoping to be there for the birth, but don't want to leave to early. First babies seem to run a bit late in our family. I've been doing a little prepping and pre packing to be ready to leave when the time is right. 
I also got my kitty, Pila, to the vet's office this last week to be fixed. So no more babies. Hopefully she'll settle down to be a nice house cat now. If she does escape (like she did earlier this year) I don't have to worry about kittens. 
We've been enjoying the lovely summer evenings, sitting outside and relaxing. The fun thing about…

Meals from the Homeastead

Good Morning! Here's a look at what I was cooking up last week...
We started off the week with burgers. I had some sliced pepper jack cheese I took out of the freezer and used a slice of that and some chopped onion to add to my hamburger. I also added spices (to taste), salt, pepper, garlic, Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb. I made 3 burgers for us from this..

We also put some corn on the cob on the grill to go with this and had potato chips on the side.  The burgers were so good. 

We had leftover corn and had that with bbq'd steak and baked potatoes for the next night. I made the Caesar Salad Kit that I mentioned in my grocery haul to with this meal..

I was in the mood to make soup and the day was cool and cloudy which would have been a perfect soup day, but instead I made some ham alfredo because it seemed quick and easy to put together.
A few months ago I had canned up some ham and stock that was leftover from a large ham I had served. If you'd like to see that post you…