Everyday Cooking, a cookbook for homeschooling families from Everyday Homemaking When my children are grown and move away to start families of their own, I want them both to know how to cook and so I was very excited when we got the opportunity to review “Everyday Cooking“, a cookbook filled with extra tips and ideas from Everyday Homemaking. More Than Just A Cookbook Everyday Cooking is so much more than just a cookbook. Vicki Bentley wrote this book for her daughters. She wanted them to have one spot filled with all the recipes that they grew up with, as well as advice and directionsRead More →

No-Rise Yeast Bread for Busy Moms

I am always looking for ways to cut the time in my kitchen down so I can spend more of that precious time I have with my children. I love the time we spend together homeschooling. So much, in fact, that I often forget about dinner. Many days I get carried away with lessons or projects, discover that it is almost dinner time, and realize that I did not plan ahead with dinner. Now, dinner can be cobbled together pretty easily if you have bread or rolls. But we prefer the taste of homemade bread, so we don’t buy it in the store. And thatRead More →

Marigold Bakes A Cake

A Review of “Marigold Bakes a Cake” by Mike Malbrough It took me a while to get my hands on this book when it arrived at our house, as my children squirreled it away and declared it the most fantastic book ever. That might seem reasonable and normal for children who are picture-book age… but my kids are teenagers! Marigold Bakes a Cake is the story of a orange cat with a penchant for things creative, but if it is Monday he must bake. The book chronicles Marigold’s hilarious adventures one Monday as he attempts to bake a cake, with a lot of help fromRead More →

In our house, these cookies don’t last long enough to make it overnight in the cookie jar. I put them in and by the next morning, the jar is empty.   Ingredients: 1/2 Cup Butter 1/2 Cup Margerine or Crisco or butter substitute (vegetable oil works as well) 1 1/2 Cups Sugar 2 Tbps molasses 2 eggs 1 tsp vanilla extract 2 1/2 cups rolled oats, ground to flour in the blender 1 tsp salt 1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp baking soda 12-16 oz chocolate chips 1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional but yummy) Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Cream butter and sugar. AddRead More →

Watermelon Pickles

Summer is for making watermelon pickles… Sound odd to you? Well, before I met my father-in-law I would have agreed with you. But he often waxed nostalgic over the crunchy sweet goodness of the watermelon pickles his mother made for his family when he was little. They called it watermelon candy, if I recall the stories correctly. The large family was hit by the effects of the depression and migrated to California, living in a manner akin to a Steinbeck novel. In fact I remember a story about his mother using old newspaper stuffed between layers of the children’s clothing in an attempt to keepRead More →

How about some warm, fresh pretzels, hot out of the oven with butter melting on them? Warm and soft and crunchy and salty all at the same time. How can you say no? All it takes is about an hour and you could have some sitting on your kitchen table! This recipe is for the kind of pretzels that my grandmother would get from the baker in her small German town in Bavaria. Down there a lot of the people speak a dialect of German called Schwabische, and so I call these pretzels Schwabische-style. Und So, Gangewirloss! (Gehen Wir Loss for those of you whoRead More →

I love gumdrops with a passion. And yet in spite of our exploration into bread baking and soap making and our family’s general abandonment of all things processed food (initially driven by the financial constraints that come with homeschooling), I never tried making candy. Until last weekend. My son absolutely loves cooking and baking and making chocolates, so he was an obvious choice to help me try gumdrops. The process is really simple and we immediately developed our own recipe. The only caution is that the molten gumdrops really are hot and probably not a great activity for little ones. But getting the cooled confectionsRead More →

Cookie art is a great way to spend some relaxing and fun time with your kids anytime, but especially during the holidays. Here is a German sugar and butter cookie recipe I grew up with. It is well, well tested and ever so delicious. Also the dough is robust enough that kids can do the mixing and kneading and rolling and cutting and the cookies will still taste great.   German Sugar and Butter Cookies: 2 large or 3 small eggs (or 6 yolks) 200-250 g Sugar 500 g Flour 250 g Butter (2 1/2 sticks) 2 tsp freshly-grated Lemon Peel 1 tsp Salt TraditionalRead More →