Category Archives: recipes

A Peck of Peppers

On my list to do this year was to get to the Amish area south of us and buy some produce.  This time of year, it’s so cheap and so delicious.  One thing to do was to get peppers and onions.  My plan was to cut them up and bag them and freeze them for some quick fajita meals this winter.  I told Kalissa what my plan was and she was excited about it too.

The Amish area is beautiful this time of year.  I didn’t take pictures as I was too “in the moment”.  We regularly shop the “bent and dent” grocery stores there, get goodies from the bakery and pick up produce in season.

I got HUGE bags of onions for $6…It’s 10 pounds worth.

and a whole LARGE box of peppers for $9.  I counted and there were 54 peppers in my box!!!!  That figures out to be 16 cents per pepper!!


Our car was PACKED by the time we headed home!!

We had the boys with when we went and on the way home stopped at the park in Fairbanks.

I try really hard when I can to take pictures of my daughters with their kiddos.  I know so often there husbands don’t.  I don’t want them to end up like me with no pictures of us together.


I couldn’t decide which was my favorite so included them all.


Once I got home I started in on the onions and peppers.  Thankfully the onions were “crying” onions.


I’m was about half done and decided to quit.  Here’s my haul…. Continue reading

Tomato Basil Yumminess

I’m terrible with using the cherry tomatoes in my garden.  Terrible.  But I can’t resist planting them.  I love having cherry tomatoes in my garden as I typically go out and eat them right off the vine when I’m weeding.  Then once the regular tomatoes start producing the poor cherry tomatoes are forgotten and left behind.  Please tell I’m not the only one to do that.

Well a couple weeks ago Kayla and I were in Decorah and stopped at Oneota Coop.  It’s a very nice health food grocery that we both enjoy stopping by.  In their taste testing case they had some cherry tomatoes that were sliced in half.  The sign said, the ingredients were tomatoes, basil and salt.  Hmm.  I thought I’d give them a try.  I loved it.  Well how easy of a recipe is that??

So I went home and made some….


How simple but oh so tasty.  Yep…no recipe.

I cut up the tomatoes and basil and sprinkled them generously with salt.  It taste just like what we had at the store.  With only three ingredients, I expected it to but still was pleasantly surprised.

The happy news…. Continue reading

Pizza @ Jo’s

I’ve been known for my pizza.  Seriously, we rarely ever go out for pizza.  If we do it’s either:
-at the theater and we’re really more there to see the movie
-we get Casey’s (gas station) pizza for convenience

I learned early on to make pizza.  I think it was actually one of the first foods that we quit going out of eat to have as we felt I made it as good as the restaurants.  The funny thing is, it’s even better now than it was back then…and we all thought it was good then.

Kramer LOVED deep dish pizza…the deeper the better.  Me, I’ve grown to liking a medium crust that is still soft so, the last time I made pizza, I made a medium crust….Then I tried to mimic the pizza we last had at the theater….a “Big Kahuna”.

I made my crust then added pizza sauce…not a lot.  We don’t like really saucy pizza.  Then I added a complete layer of shaved ham.  Then bacon pieces…then pineapple.


The cheese for the top was this….


After that I put a really thin layer of shredded mozzarella.

After that one was done…I made a cheeseburger pizza.  This one was BBQ sauce on the bottom, then hamburger and bacon, then chopped pickles, then the same cheese and mozzarella.

So how did we like them???? Continue reading

When a Vegetarian Visits

Our daughter Kayla is a vegetarian.  When she first told us, Hubby and I were shocked.  For goodness sakes, we lived on a farm.  As part of Hubby’s job he raised cattle for meat.  Growing up, Kayla’s highschool job was milking cows for a neighbor.  We treat the cattle well…our neighbors treated their cattle well.  We just didn’t “get it”.  Admittedly, we were both a little “old school”.

For me, I went into a panic.  How was I going to feed her?  We are a meat and potatoes family.  How was I going to make something for her but still make things for the other kids?  I was flustered and worried how I could possibly be the mom that fixes the favorites and have vegetarian options too.

Time (a few years) have passed.  I’ve calmed down.  I’ve talked to Kayla and taken time to think it all through.  Kayla is really good about not being too picky when she’s here which helps too.  She tries to stay true to herself without making me feel bad if I don’t “make it completely right”.

Nowadays, I make chili with no meat…then have a bowl of meat on the side.  People just add meat who want meat when they scoop up their chili.  I do the same with spaghetti.  I do the same with fajitas.  If make brats or hamburger we buy a vegetarian option for Kayla.  It’s all gotten to be so much less of a worry.  The longer we do it, the easier it gets.

I don’t object to her food choices at all…I just didn’t know how to “be a good cook” for a vegetarian and as a mom cooking is one of the ways I love my kids.  It’s what my son Buck calls “a whole thing”.  If you’re a mom who purposely makes your kids’ favorite foods and enjoys cooking, I’m sure you can understand.  I felt like if I couldn’t cook “right” for her, I wasn’t being a good mom and loving her like she deserved.  (Oh my…how dramatic I am over food…but like I said, if you’re “that” mom, you get it!)

Kayla sometimes helps me out by bringing something we all can eat that she prepared.  One day she brought Big Mac salad.


Rather than putting hamburger in the salad, she cooked up lentils and spiced them.  She put all the ingredients in the canning jar and brought with a bag of lettuce.  PERFECT.  We all had some!  I’m sure kidney beans would have worked well too.

Anyway….I thought I’d share another recipe that I’ve tried when Kayla comes and has been a success.

I love ring macaroni.  When I was in the grocery store the other day I grabbed some.

I ended up making this…. Continue reading