Deviled Eggs

Do you have that one recipe that you make and you just don’t even think about it?  For my crowd some of those recipes are homemade biscuits, gravy, slaw and deviled eggs.  I often forget that people don’t make things from watching Grandma or experimenting.  Some of our best recipes we created from experiments!

Over Thanksgiving one of my sisters mentioned “a recipe” that she found online and used for deviled eggs.  So I’m putting this one out there for Sis….  Here’s how we whip up our deviled eggs.

First, we boil our eggs.  We have found it’s easier to peel the eggs if you get the water to a boil before you put the eggs in the water.  I used a slotted spoon to carefully lower my eggs in the water.  Once they have boiled 15 mins, remove the eggs and run cold water over them.  Peel the eggs, slice them in half and separate the eggs and the yolks.

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Mix the egg yolks with a heaping spoon full of mayonnaise, diced sweet pickles (or sweet relish), a sprinkle of salt and a sprinkle of pepper.

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When you have the yolk mixture to your liking, put it inside a gallon size ziplock bag and cut the corner so you can easily squeeze the egg out of the bag.

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Tada!

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

Just in time for Santa!!!

My Mama used to makes these when I was a little girl and all of the neighborhood kids wanted to hang out at our house…..partially for the cookies.  These are an all-time favorite when it comes to cookies.  They’re the best of the best, a hit with the Christmas Carolers and any function that involves food.

The recipe says that it yields about 5 dozen but I do good to get 4 dozen. (My crowd LOVES BIG COOKIES!)

Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter and sugars at medium speed with a mixer until creamy. Add eggs and 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla, beating until blended.  Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl; gradually add to butter mixture, beating just until blended. Beat in morsels just until combined. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto a well greased pan or parchment paper-lined baking sheets.

Bake at 350° for 10 to 14 minutes or until they’re done to your liking. Remove to wire racks, and cool completely, about 15 minutes.

Grab a glass of milk!!!

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Apple Cranberry Crisp

Preserving the Good Life

This is one of those mouth-watering recipes that can be used as a side dish at Thanksgiving, Christmas or as a dessert for any holiday occasion.

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  • 3 cups chopped unpeeled apples
  • 2 cups whole raw cranberries
  • 1 1/4 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water

Mix together the apples, cranberries and sugar in a casserole dish.  Top with 1/2 cup water.

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Topping:

  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cup of oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional

Mix together the topping and sprinkle it over the cranberry, apple mixture.

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Bake for 1 hour on 350 degrees.  This is delicious as a side or as a dessert, warmed and topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.  Enjoy!!!

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Canning Apple Pie Filling

Apple, apples, apples…..just one reason I love FALL!  This is one thing I wish I canned more of; it never fails, we go through apple pie filling quick!  I need to start making double what I think we will use.  It’s just too easy, grab a can of pie filling, throw it in a pie shell, bake and ta-da – Apple Pie!

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  • 6 quarts of apples, peeled and sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups of Clear Jel (found at most Amish stores)
  • 5 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 7 1/2 cups of apple juice
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of apple pie spice
  • 3/4 cup of lemon juice

In a large stock pot mix together Clear Jel, sugar, apple juice, lemon juice and spices.  Stir continually until the Clear Jel begins to thicken, it will look like store bought pie filling.  Once it begins to thicken, add in the apples and continue to stir.  Let all of the ingredients blend well, about 10 minutes.

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When it gets to your desired thickness ladle into clean sterile jars leaving a generous 1 inch head space.  Canning with Clear Jel is tricky.  Be sure to leave extra head space, the Clear Jel tends to expand and increase in size as it increases in temperature. Wipe rims with a sterile cloth, place lid and ring and tighten finger tight.   Water bath for 35 minutes.  Let it sit in the canner for a few extra minutes before taking it out to prevent siphoning.

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Now you’re one step closer to making the holidays and family get-togethers a little easier.

Apple Pie Pickles

I’m always looking to try something different.  This recipe got my attention and made my kitchen smell amazing!!!  It reminds me of spiced apples that I had years ago….

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This makes 12 pints

  • 24 large apples (peeled, cored and sliced)
  • 12 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons of salt
  • 3 Tablespoons of Whole Cloves
  • 1 Tablespoon of Apple Pie Spice

Core and slice apples then pack them into mason jars with cinnamon sticks.

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In a small pot, cook remaining ingredients over medium heat until sugar and salt dissolve.

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Remove from heat and carefully ladle pickling liquid over apples, dividing spices evenly among jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.   Gently tap jar against the table to release any air bubbles.  Apply hot lids and rings tightened fingertip tight.  Water bath for 10 minutes.  Let sit for 2 weeks before opening.

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Canning Water for Emergencies

We just missed Hurricane Florence but so many family and friends weren’t so lucky.  As it was heading our way I felt the need to prepare myself just a little more than usual.

My husband thought I was crazy – but let’s be real a minute.  It takes just as much space to store an empty jar as it does one full of water.  So why not take a few minutes to fill some jars full of water and water bath them for 20 minutes.  Then in the event of an emergency that’s one less thing that you have to worry about.  When everyone else is running out to buy water…no worries, you’re covered.  And if you need the jar before you need the water, open the jar and use the water to fill the canner.  After all that consideration, it seemed like a no brainer to me.

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I re-used canning lids so there was no expense, just a little bit of time invested.  Once I started talking about this several said they’d done the same thing every time they needed to fill a canner they’d add jars of water…

I filled sterile jars with tap “city” water leaving 1/2 in head space.  You can use filtered water if you prefer.  I boiled lids I had saved from previous canned goods, tightened those down with sterile rings.  I then water bathed them for 20 minutes.

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Canning Grape Juice

My Grandmother used to can this and Tomato Juice in half gallon jars….oh how I miss her….maybe just a small portion of her lives on in me.

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I canned mine in half gallons, the biggest challenge was finding a pot deep enough to submerged the jars for water bathing.  This recipe is for QUART jars.  In each quart jar I put…

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One cup of grapes (rinsed well).

And…

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One half cup of sugar – if desired.  I have canned grapes with water and no sugar so I can add stevia when I open and serve.

Then…

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I filled each jar to  with boiling water leaving 1/2 inch head space.

I tightened my hot lids and rings onto the jars (I gave them a little shake to make sure the sugar dissolved).

Then I processed the jars in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes.

The juice does need to sit for at least two months so the juices and sugar can blend.  It starts out a pale barely pink color, but within a few weeks begins to darken to a deep purple.

When it comes time to drink the juice, we strain out the grapes as we pour and enjoy!

We have always made this from our home grown Concord grapes, but the same method can be used with any type of grape… and even cranberries!20180819_194133_Burst01-1

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