Am I turning into (gasp) a Domestic?

21 12 2007

I’ve done more cooking in the last two days that probably the last three weeks combined!  My in-laws arrived near midnight on Wednesday so I do have more people to cook for than usual.  Tomorrow is our Sabbath so I was working on our dinner today.  The main dish tomorrow will be Tofu “Meatballs.”  These are Vegan if you ever need a fairly easy dish for someone that doesn’t eat meat.

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Tofu Meatballs

1 pkg. Mori Nu Tofu, firm
1-1/2 c. onion
2 T. lite soy sauce
½ t. garlic powder
1 c. pecan meal (or ground walnuts)
1-1/2 c. bread crumbs
2 t. parsley flakes
½ t. sage
¼ t. oregano
¼ t. basil

Combine first four ingredients in a blender and whiz smooth. Pour into a mixing bowl. Add the last six ingredients and mix well. Scoop walnut sized balls onto cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray. (I use a cookie scoop for this.) Bake at 350F for about 30 minutes. These will freeze nicely at this point. When ready to use, thaw and place in flat shallow casserole in a single layer. Cover with favorite gravy that isn’t two thick. (I will add mushroom gravy to mine tomorrow.) Bake uncovered in 350F oven for 25-30 minutes.

I also made Garlic-Herb rolls.  This is actually a bread machine recipe for a two pound loaf, but rather than letting it bake in the machine I ran it on the dough cycle and then formed into 24 rolls and baked at 350 for 15 – 20 minutes.

img_1993.jpgGarlic Herb Bread

1-1/2 c. water
4 t. margarine or butter, softened
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 c. whole wheat flour
3 c. bread flour
2 T. sugar
2 t. salt
½ t. dried rosemary leaves
¼ t. dried thyme leaves
¼ t. dried basil leaves
1-3/4 t. regular active dry yeast

Our church is holding their annual Christmas program and Slice of Pie tonight so I baked a couple of pies this afternoon.  I had some eggs left from doing the schools dinner theatre and wanted to use them up so these are the pies I made.

img_1991.jpgCreamy Peanut Butter Pie
½ c. brown sugar
½ c. granulated sugar
½ c. creamy peanut butter
2 eggs
2 T. flour
1-1/2 c. milk
1 t. vanilla
1 9 inch pie shell

In a microwave safe bowl, combine the sugars, peanut butter, eggs and flour. Gradually stir in the milk. Heat at 70% power, stirring every minute, until thick. Don’t boil.
Remove from microwave and stir in the vanilla. Pour into the baked pie shell and chill.
Serving Ideas : Serve with whipped cream

The original recipe on the peanut putter pie had you make it on the stove top.  I modified it for the microwave and it made it much easier and quicker.

img_1990.jpgLemon Meringue Pie 

Filling:
1-1/2 c. sugar
½ c. cornstarch
1-1/2 c. boiling water
3 egg yolks
½ c. lemon juice
1 T. butter or margarine
1 t. grated lemon peel

1 9-inch pie crust

Meringue:
3 egg whites
¼ t. cream of tarter
6 T. granulated sugar.

Combine sugar and cornstarch in a microwave safe bowl. Slowly stir in boiling water. Cook on Full Power for 4-6 minutes, or until thickened and bubbling. Stir twice during cooking time.

Mix part of the hot mixture into slightly-beaten egg yolks. Return all to remaining hot mixture. Cook on Full Power for 1 to 2-1/2 minutes, or until mixture begins to boil. Stir halfway through cooking time.

Stir in lemon juice, butter, and lemon peel, until butter is melted. Pour filling into 9-inch baked pie crust.

Preheat oven to 400F. Combine egg whites and cream of tarter in a small bowl. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 1 minute. Increase speed to high and gradually add sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff peaks form and sugar is dissolved. Immediately spread the meringue over the filling sealing meringue to the curst of the pie. Bake about 5 minutes until golden brown.

While I was in the middle of making the pies, I looked out the kitchen window and there were 6 mule deer standing right below the window.  I raced up stairs grabbed my camera and opened the slidder door to snap a picture.  The camera wouldn’t come on!  Oh, come on, I just charged the batteries last night.  I popped open the battery door and duh — I charged the batteries, but forgot to put them back in the camera.  Another race up the stairs to grab the batteries and in the mean time the deer are on the move.  I went out the front door and snapped these pictures.  One fellow even stopped to pose.

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You can see on this last picture that it had just started to snow.  I think this is as close to reindeer as we will see around here.

I made homemade chili today too, but am not going to bother with the recipe tonight.  Just a word of warning to my family if they are reading this — don’t get used to this!  I don’t want to spend my whole life in the kitchen.  Also thanks to my MIL who did all the clean up behind me.  If you’ve gotta cook — that is the way to do it!

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