Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Recipes: Hodge Podge

No particular theme today, just a hodge podge of different recipe for you to try!


Clifford Tea Cookies

1 c. shortening
2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. baking soda with a pinch of cream of tartar
pinch of salt
1 c. chopped nuts
3 1/2 c. flour

Roll into rolls; then put in refrigerator overnight. Slice and bake at 350 degrees.

Orange Pudding

1 cup sugar
2 cups milk
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. butter
1/4 cup flour
3 egg yolks
3 oranges, cut up

Mix first four ingredients and bring to a boil. Mix flour with enough milk to make a paste; add paste and eggs to milk mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until thick. Place the cut up oranges in the bottom of a bowl; sprinkle with a little sugar. Pour the pudding over oranges.

Chocolate Potato Cake

1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
2/3 cup caster (fine) sugar
2 oz. plain chocolate, melted or 4 level tablespoons cocoa
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup cooked mashed potato
1/2 cup butter
4 tablspoons milk
2 eggs

Cream the butter and sugar with the mashed potato, then add the melted chocolate or the cocoa. Add the beaten eggs, alternately with the flour and the salt. Finally pour in the milk, mixing well, to make a soft dough. Well grease two 8 inch cake pans and divide batter equally between them. Bake at 350 degrees oven for 25-30 minutes. The top springy to the touch when done. Cool for a few minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack. Frost with whipped cream or desired frosting.

Cinnamon Vanilla Sugar Tea Toasts

Brew a pot of cinnamon tea to serve with these little tea sandwiches. Be sure to include a cinnamon stick to stir the tea.

8 slices of firm white bread, cut into triangles and lightly toasted
3 ounces of cream cheese, softened
1 TBSP. powdered sugar
Vanilla cinnamon sugar*

Combine the cream cheese and the powdered sugar until smooth and easy to spread. If necessary, add a few drops of milk to smooth out the cream cheese.

Spread the toasted bread triangles with the cream cheese. Top with a sprinkling of vanilla cinnamon sugar.


Slice one whole vanilla bean in half, leaving it attached at the stem end. Place it in a 1-pint mason jar (or a tightly sealing container). Fill the jar with enough sugar to cover the bean. Let sit several weeks, shaking now and then, until the sugar is infused with the vanilla. Leave the bean in the jar, and add more sugar as you use it up.


Blend approx. 1-tsp. cinnamon to 1/2 cup of vanilla sugar. Add more or less cinnamon, to taste.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Homemade Frosting Goodness

What the world really needs is more love and less paper work. ~Pearl Bailey

It's easy to buy frosting, but for the most part making your own is easy and cheaper. I always have confectioners' sugar, butter and/or margarine, cocoa, and vanilla extract in my pantry. My favorite thing to do is bake a batch of brownies, cool and frost with whatever frosting strikes my fancy. Last time I made a buttercream frosting using flavored coffee creamer instead of milk.

Buttercream Frosting

1/4 cup butter, room temperature
5 tablespoons French vanilla flavored coffee cream
2 cups confectioners' sugar

Add the butter and creamer to the sugar and mix well with a whisk or an electric mixer until creamy. This is the perfect amount for a 9x13 pan of brownies. You can use any flavor of coffee creamer.

Jiffy Chocolate Frosting

2 squares (2 ounces)unsweetened chocolate
1 can (14 or 15 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon water
dash salt
1/4 tsp. almond extract

Melt chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Gradually stir in the condensed milk and cook over rapidly boiling water for 5 minutes, while stirring. Remove from heat. Then add water, salt and almond extracts. Cool. Frosts tops and sides of two 9 " layers.

Mocha Chocolate Frosting: Substitute 3 tablespoons hot coffee for the water and omit the extract.

Quick Broiler Coconut Frosting

3 tbsp. butter or margarine
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons evaporated milk
3/4 c. shredded coconut
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Work together the butter and sugar with a spoon until light. Then add milk, coconut and vanilla. Spread over the top surface of an 8x8x2 inch or 9x9x2 cake, or an 8 or 9 inch cake layer that has cooled 5 minutes after baking. Broil until coconut is delicately browned, taking care not to let the sugar mixture burn. Serve warm or cool, cutting the cake in the pan.

Try some of these crazy cake recipes on OFL:


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Organizing your children's art work

This article has been on Old Fashioned Living for quite some time. It has quite a bit of useful advice, especially at this time of year! Here we are, halfway through the school year, which means all that art work is starting to pile up. The refrigerator is covered and you don't know what else to do. Here are some great tips that can help!

In school, kids are encouraged to create, draw, color, paint and build. These activities can certainly stimulate children, and help them grow. Very often, these masterpieces that your children create are brought home and proudly displayed. But what do you do when all of the artwork begins to take over your home? Here are 7 great ideas:

1. FIND THE DIAMONDS. Rather than keeping every single piece of artwork your child creates, sit down with your child on a regular basis and ask him to choose the one or two he likes best. By the end of the year, you should have no more than 5 pieces of artwork that your child believes to be his "best" pieces. This will help keep the artwork under control, and will still give you an opportunity to save his creations for future memories.

2. A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS. Take photos of the artwork that your child creates and keep these photos in a scrapbook. This way, even if the artwork is discarded for space purposes, you'll still have the memory!

3. KIDS FILE STORAGE BOX. Office supply stores carry portable file boxes that hold hanging file folders. These generally have a cover and a handle for easy portability. Help your child create her very own filing system. Perhaps one file folder for 2nd grade artwork, one for 3rd grade artwork, and so on. Now, all the drawings, and any type of artwork that lays flat, will be kept safe and organized. You'll even be teaching your child filing skills! It's never too early!

4. KEEP IT CONTAINED. For other artwork that does not lay flat, the perfect container may be a large, plastic container with a lid. Your child will have a space for shadowboxes, and other artwork that won't fit into a file folder. Again, be choosy. If you keep every single piece of artwork your child brings home for the next 15 years, your house is going to be overflowing with it.

To see the rest of these great organizing tips, visit 7 Easy Ideas for Organizing Kids Artwork on Old Fashioned Living.