Sunday, June 29, 2014

Sunday Dessert - Blackberry Cobbler

The blackberries are in season here which means it's time for all things blackberry at my house.  Today, I decided to try a new recipe for blackberry cobbler.  While I was mixing up the crust, my Dad was picking blackberries from his vines.  They were still warm from the sun when he brought them in to me.  This recipe is definitely a keeper.  He ate two helpings at lunch today. 

Blackberry Cobbler
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
5 cups fresh blackberries or 2 (14-ounce) packages frozen blackberries, thawed and drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon sugar

Preheat oven to 425.  Combine 1 cup sugar and flour.  Add berries and toss well.  (If using frozen berries, increase flour to 1/3 cup.)  Sprinkle with lemon juice.  Spoon into a greased 8 or 9-inch square baking dish.

Prepare Crust, and spoon 9 mounds over blackberries.  Brush with butter and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sugar

Bake, uncovered, at 425 for 30 minutes or until browned and bubbly.  Serve warm with ice cream, if desired.  Yield:  9 servings

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup buttermilk

Combine first 4 ingredients; cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly.  Stir in whipping cream and buttermilk just until blended.  Yield:  enough topping for 1 cobbler.

Recipe from:  Comfort Food by Southern Living

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


This past Sunday was Homecoming at Calvary Baptist, the church I grew up in as did my Mother before me.  My Mother and her parents were charter members so my roots are deep.   It is the church where I first learned about Jesus, went to Vacation Bible School, and learned about missions. 
Homecoming is a day set aside, usually in the spring or fall, where families and past members come back to their home church for a special church service and a covered dish lunch.  There is also usually a special offering taken for cemetery upkeep that day as well.  It is a reunion of families and friends. 

At Calvary, it is also Decoration Day so we place flowers on the graves of my grandparents, aunt, and cousin who are buried there and we visit with other families who’ve come to place flowers.  Usually, my cousin and I walk around the cemetery remembering those precious souls who’ve passed on:  Lee and Maytle Jones, Albert and Jeanette Baldwin, Wilbur and Millie Jones, Dovie Crane, Bill and Britt Nethery, and Charles Walker.  They taught us in Sunday School and Training Union but most importantly, they loved us. 

It’s always so good to see old friends, many of whom I've known since we were small children.    Some are still at Calvary but most of us go to other churches or live too far away to come to church there regularly.  But most try to make it back every year for Homecoming.  Other than funerals, this is usually the only time we see each other nowadays. 

There’s always a covered dish lunch afterwards but since our family is scattered now, we opt to do a mini-family reunion at my cousin's house instead.  There’s always plenty of food, fun, good conversation, fried chicken, and banana pudding.  Nowadays though, we have store bought fried chicken.  My Mother’s fried chicken is just a fond memory.  But the banana pudding?  There's always a huge bowl of it on the table.  No other dessert is needed or wanted.

Mom’s Fried Chicken
Chicken pieces, bone in

Soak chicken in buttermilk overnight.  Add a little salt if you think about it.  Heat 1-1 1/2: of oil in skillet.  Mix flour, salt, and pepper.  Coat chicken in flour mixture.  Drop a little water in hot oil to see if it's hot enough before adding chicken.  If it pops, it's hot enough.   
Put chicken in skillet with bone facing up.  Put lid on skillet and cook chicken until done.  Turn over when browned and leave lid off to finish cooking. 
If cooking a whole chicken, cook breasts first.
(Note:  these instructions were given to me during a lesson on frying chicken)

Aunt Carolyn’s Banana Pudding
1 big box Jello Vanilla Instant Pudding
3 cups milk
1 can sweetened condensed milk
dash vanilla
1 large bowl Cool Whip
Vanilla Wafers

Mix pudding and milk together until slightly thick. Add sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, and Cool Whip. In a bowl, layer wafers, bananas, and pudding in that order. Top with vanilla wafers.

As long as you have fried chicken, banana pudding,  and a big jug of iced sweet tea on the table, you don’t really need anything else.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Mattie Lou's Gloves

Mattie Lou is my Grandmother's first cousin so I think that would make her my third cousin. At age 91, Mattie Lou is the last surviving member of her generation.  And talking to her reminds me of talking to my Grandmother and Great-Aunt Flora.  Mattie Lou drives, cuts a couple acres of grass, and works hard in her yard. And she's been fixing up her niece's house to rent or sell.

My cousin Cheryel has given my Dad copies of old family photos.  The only problem is that we sometimes can't identify everyone so Daddy has copies made and sends them to Mattie Lou.  Since Mattie Lou has been so wonderful with her photo identifications and stories, I thought I'd make her a pair of fingerless mitts to wear while working outdoors.  She said her favorite color is purple.  Here they are:

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get a really good picture before shipping them off to Mattie Lou.  The color is a beautiful deep purple called Petunia.  The yarn is Berroco Vintage and the pattern is one of my all time favorites, Welted Fingerless Gloves by Churchmouse Yarns and Teas.  I think this yarn has now become one of my favorite yarns for this pattern.  It knits up with crisp stitch definition and just knits up beautifully for this pattern.  And it's easy care to boot. 

Happily, Mattie Lou reports that she just loves them. 

Happy knitting!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Snow Day in Alabama

We're having a rare snow day here in middle Alabama and everyone is so excited!

Hard to believe we had 5 inches!

We have to enjoy it while we can because by nightfall, most of it will be gone except in the shady areas and higher elevations. 

I got to try out my new boots in the snow too!  I bought them on deep discount last year and have been looking forward to wearing them.  I'm happy to report they wore beautifully.

And here's one more photo taken at first light.

Happy Knitting everyone!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Sunday Dessert - A Recipe

Every weekend, I make a dessert for Sunday dinner.  Sometimes, I try a new recipe but most times, it's just an old family favorite.  I thought I'd start occasionally sharing those recipes with you.
Here's what I made this morning:

Mom's Buttermilk Pie
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 eggs
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 pie crust

Mix all ingredients thoroughly by hand.  Pour into pie crust and place in the lower section of the oven on a baking sheet lined with foil.  Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes or until golden brown.

This is a classic Southern recipe and although it has buttermilk in it, you can't taste it at all.  This was my Mother's recipe.

If you try it, let me know.  I'd love to hear from you!

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Stash

The stash.  Every knitter has one.  It starts out innocently enough but then grows.  And grows.  It's all those leftover balls of yarn from projects, and yarn that you bought for something in particular but then you either don't get around to knitting it or the yarn just doesn't work out for the pattern.  And it's that yarn that was on sale and well, you could use it for something.  And then there are the pretties that just jump in your basket at the yarn shop.

Back in the summer, my stash was threatening to take over.  Part of it was in bins, all tucked away nice and neat.  But the rest of it looked like this. 

Bags of yarn, stashed here and there around the house.  I decided that it was time to not just get things under control but to enter my stash into Ravelry.  But before I could get even halfway through, I was distracted.  Well, more like overwhelmed what with all the picture taking and entering of each skein.  And then Thanksgiving weekend, I became determined to finish and by doing small bits almost day, I had it finished by the end of the year.  I'm proud to say it now all looks like this:

Before I started this project, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what was in the stash but I quickly found out that I was wrong.  Way wrong.  I found some surprises along the way like that second skein of Cascade 220 in black that I didn't know that I had (I was wanting to make a hat) along with some other happy finds.  And I found some surprises that can only be described as "what was I thinking???"

I'm so glad that I finally took the time to organize my stash into Ravelry.  A few weeks ago, I wanted to make Churchmouse Yarns' Walking Rib Cowl.  I consulted the pattern and since I didn't have the called for Rowan Felted Tweed Aran, I did a quick search of my stash in Ravelry and there it was, a suitable substitute, Berroco Blackstone Tweed.  I pulled it out of the bin and was soon on my way to a new cowl.

I  have to confess that I still have a basket of Peaches and Crème to enter into Ravelry.  But that will have to be another day.