Plenty Sweet Life

Grandma's Recipes One By One!

Sugar Cookies #4 and Patriotic Ice Cream Sandwiches

Today’s recipe for Sugar Cookies #4 is going to serve two purposes (yes – this is the 4th recipe for plain sugar cookies I’ve done on this blog). One – they’re just downright delicious as a cookie. Two – we’re going to make ice cream sandwiches out of them! Yes! You heard me. Even better – since the holiday is coming up – we’re going to make them festive for the 4th of July!

The 4th of July was always a big deal for my family. Grandma and Grandpa’s church always had a “Homecoming” on the 4th of July, where people who had grown up in that small town (technically my mom’s hometown) would come home for a good old-fashioned small town 4th celebration. There would be a big lunch at the church and park in town, where the church would furnish the fried chicken or some other delicious main dish along with the rest of the meal, and the church ladies would all bring their Ost Kaka and pies for dessert. Then in the afternoon there would be a program of some kind: singing, bands, or readings. My mom, dad, sister and I lived on a lake when I was growing up and in the small town not far from our lake (technically where my dad grew up) there was a parade every 4th of July. We would either go to my mom’s small hometown or go to my dad’s small hometown near us for the first part of the day and then in the afternoon, we would have friends and family to our house to eat until we couldn’t eat anymore, swim until our ears were so full of water we couldn’t hear anymore, canoe until we would just swamp the canoe so we wouldn’t have to paddle anymore, boat until we ran out of gas and the motor wouldn’t go anymore, water ski until our legs were shaking and we couldn’t stand up on the skis anymore, and shoot off fireworks of some kind until we couldn’t stand the mosquitos anymore. It was so much fun and I have a lot of great memories from both kinds of celebrations from those years.

This is another recipe from the tiny book I found at my sister’s house.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Sugar Cookies #4

Mix in order given:

1 cup sugar

1 cup shortening, half butter (I used all butter)

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla (I put the vanilla in here with the more liquid ingredients, and I used 2 teaspoons to give it more vanilla flavor)

2 teaspoons baking powder

Flour to make a soft dough

Roll on floured board.

Bake in hot oven (I baked them at 375 degrees for 10-13 minutes).

The dough for this recipe rolls out nicely – and no need to chill it! I love that!

I decided to make them VERY festive. You can never be TOO festive. Right?

They’re a tender cookie after baking, and they’re delicious!

I used store-bought (gasp!) ice cream, but you can certainly make your own homemade ice cream if you want to.

I made all of these ice cream sandwiches, wrapped them, and put them right into the freezer to pull out on the 4th of July for a tasty treat.

These cookies are so easy to make, since there’s no dough chilling involved. You can just roll them right out and get it done. Make them as festive as you want to. Maybe try just sugar on top of them and fill them with strawberry ice cream, or chocolate ice cream, or mint ice cream. All of those would be right up my alley. I may have to make another batch of these Sugar Cookies #4 and try them all!

 

 

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Rhubarb Dessert

Today’s recipe for Rhubarb Dessert came from my mother-in-law. She got it out of one of HER old church cookbooks, and by the date on the recipe, she just tried this one a couple of years ago. That would just make her 91 years old and still trying new recipes (she’s 93 now)!

This photo is of my in-laws with the wonderful baby who would grow up to marry me!

My mother-in-law sure looks great so soon after having a baby – they were still in the hospital here.

She made a copy of the rhubarb recipe, gave it to my husband when he was down there visiting her one weekend, and told him to give it to me because it was so good! She had made this dessert and then brought some to a neighbor. Well, this is another one that I HAVE to try! Those little ladies who make the church cookbooks really know what they’re doing. It’s amazing how they keep on finding these recipes with a few simple ingredients that are absolutely delicious!

I have to say it – here’s another one of my new favorites!

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Rhubarb Dessert

Spread in an 8″ x 12″ pan:

2 cup rhubarb, chopped (I would use 3-4 cups)

Mix together and spread over rhubarb:

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs

2 heaping Tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix:

6 Tablespoons shortening or butter (I used butter)

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup flour

Sprinkle mixture over rhubarb.

Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.

I added an extra cup or so of rhubarb and I would put even more in next time. But then, I love rhubarb, and I don’t think you can ever have enough.

Use a gentle hand when spreading the second layer and it will cover it all.

I used my hands to bring the third layer together and then sprinkled it on top of everything.

This smells so amazing while baking – enjoy that.

This is another easy, simple to make, and ridiculously delicious recipe. Take advantage of the rhubarb (if you still have some) and make this tasty dessert that’s even more delicious with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream. You and your family are going to love this Rhubarb Dessert.

 

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Seven Layer Dip

I found this recipe for Seven Layer Dip in one of Grandma’s church cookbooks, and guess who had submitted it? My mom! I kind of think she originally got this recipe from me, but oh well, it’s a good one none the less! This is another one of those that we have for a light lunch or dinner sometimes when the weather is tooooo warm and we don’t feel much like starting the oven or the grill. Seven Layer Dip is similar to The Easiest Nachos Ever and goes perfectly with Julie’s Margaritas! Seriously, I could eat this whole batch of dip by myself. Not even kidding.

Wow – I love this stuff.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Seven Layer Dip

In a flat dish spread evenly:

1 can of Mexican bean dip or refried beans (I usually use refried beans)

Combine:

1 cup sour cream

2 Tablespoons taco seasoning

Spread on top of beans.

Layer in order given:

1/2 cup black olives, sliced

1/2 cup green olives, sliced

5 green onions, chopped (you can also add sliced jalapeno if you want to spice it up)

1 large tomato, chopped or 1 cup salsa

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Can make ahead and keep in refrigerator overnight.

Serve with tortilla chips.

I used a deep dish pie plate for this, but you could use a quiche plate or even a small cake pan if you need to. Sometimes I use the taco seasoning, sometimes I leave the sour cream plain. Just depends on how I’m feeling that day.

Full disclosure – I don’t really measure anything when making this dip. I know that will come as a shock to my family (no it won’t). I use the can of refried beans and then about a cup of sour cream, but after that all bets are off. I just put in what I know my family likes. I usually don’t use green olives because my family goes crazy for black olives. I only used two green onions in here because instead of a tomato, I usually use salsa and it has some more onion in it and some in our family don’t especially care for onions. They boys in the family like more spice, so sometimes we add jalapeno or hot salsa. You see how this goes.

This dip is so pretty and so great for a hot summer day.

Don’t forget Julie’s Margaritas! Perfect!

You will absolutely love this dip. There is ample opportunity for more margaritas than normal – salty olives, salty chips, salted rim on the margaritas. Heaven. Make a batch of this Seven Layer Dip today – better yet make 2 – you’re gonna need 2!

 

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Baked Cabbage

I know, I know – Baked Cabbage doesn’t sound that great. O.M.G. This is a recipe I found when going through my mom’s recipes and it is so good. I don’t know where she got this recipe – maybe from a co-worker? It might have been the year we grew cabbage in our garden and we had a LOT or cabbage to use. Anyway, I don’t ever remember my mom making this – and I would have remembered – but I’m glad she kept the recipe. We love cabbage anyway in our family, but this recipe takes the humble cabbage to new heights. When you say the recipe is called Baked Cabbage – that just makes my laugh. It sounds like it would be a dish that’s not so great. Who would have thought that cabbage could be this good! I’m not kidding! This might be one of the best vegetable dishes I’ve EVER had! It’s delicious!

This would be a great dish to make in March after St. Patrick’s Day when cabbage is cheap or when you hit the Farmer’s Market and buy local!

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Baked Cabbage

Coarsely cut up:

1 medium head of cabbage

Boil in water until partially done – about 5 minutes.

Drain and put cabbage into a casserole.

Mix together:

3 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

a little milk

Add this to cabbage and mix.

Add enough milk to just cover the cabbage (I used about 1/2 cup in all).

Add buttered bread crumbs or croutons on top (I used croutons).

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Cut the core out of the cabbage before chopping.

There aren’t a lot of ingredients, . . .

. . . which makes this fairly inexpensive to make.

Boil the cabbage and then . . .

. . . drain it before putting it into the casserole dish.

You can see that I didn’t really add a lot of milk, just enough to barely cover the cabbage.

While I’m sure the buttered bread crumbs would be delicious, I used some croutons I had in my cupboard. I did crush them a bit.

The egg mixture makes it almost like a custard.

We had this cabbage dish for dinner, and we ate almost the whole thing! It really hit the spot for some reason. It mixes the wonderful taste of the cabbage with the sweet custard, and it’s really good! Next time you’re at the Farmer’s Market, pick up a cabbage and try this Baked Cabbage.

 

 

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Happy Father’s Day!

Happy Father’s Day to all you rad dads out there! (Rad is my oldest daughter’s word – not mine!)

The photo I’m sharing today is of me and my dad and it looks like we’re working on putting something together! He always let us help with whatever he was working on.

Happy Father’s Day!

Love you, Dad!

 

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Rhubarb Jam with Blueberry

I have made Rhubarb Jam before, but today I’m trying Rhubarb Jam with Blueberry. When I made the first Rhubarb Jam on the blog, I used a recipe that I found in one of Grandma’s old church cookbooks. Then I was looking through Grandma’s recipe cards when I found what is essentially the same recipe written out by her. The only difference is that on the bottom of the card, she had written that using pie filling is good. Well, I mean really, we HAVE to try that! She says that apricot, blueberry, and strawberry pie filling are good. We know strawberry would be good because when making the jam, it calls for Strawberry Jello. I’ll have to try apricot sometime, too, just because I’m curious – how would that taste? Blueberry being my favorite – that’s the one I decided to try now. Would the blueberry overpower the deliciousness of the rhubarb? We shall see (as Grandma would say).

This sounds a bit odd, but here we go.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Rhubarb Jam with Blueberry

Let stand awhile (I let it stand overnight covered in the refrigerator) so it will give good juice:

5 cups rhubarb, chopped

3 cups sugar

Cook (20 minutes if we want to follow the other recipe for Rhubarb Jam).

Add:

1 small package Strawberry Jello

1 can blueberry pie filling

(I cooked the rhubarb and Strawberry Jello together for 15 minutes – no I didn’t read the other recipe first or I would have seen that you just cook the rhubarb alone first – then I cooked it all together with the pie filling for another 5 minutes. It turned out great anyway!)

Pour into jars and keep in refrigerator.

I let the rhubarb and sugar sit in the refrigerator overnight. It made a lot of nice juice, but didn’t really dissolve the sugar.

I added the Strawberry Jello and cooked it 15 minutes.

Add the blueberry pie filling and cook it another 5 minutes.

I only had pint jars available to me when I made this batch, but half pints would be great for hostess gifts.

I thought the blueberry might overpower the rhubarb, but it didn’t. You still get a definite rhubarb flavor in this jam. It is so good!

You can still see the pieces of rhubarb along with the blueberries in the jam. You need to try a batch of this jam now when rhubarb is plentiful and basically free. This recipe is very easy to do and pretty fast to make. The jam is great on toast, English muffins, angel food cake, pound cake, or ice cream. Any way you want to taste it, you’re going to LOVE this Rhubarb Jam with Blueberry!

 

 

 

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Strawberry Lemonade

This recipe for Strawberry Lemonade may be a no-brainer, but it’s too good not to share. You mix up your favorite batch of Lemonade and whiz it in the blender with some fresh strawberries. That’s it. It’s not hard, but sometimes it’s nice to try a new idea, and this is a good one to try.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Strawberry Lemonade

Make one batch of lemonade. I have my other grandma’s great recipe for Lemonade on the blog, and that’s a delicious one to try here. There are many ready-made mixes you could try, and that’s what I did today. I have even made this with a sugar-free mix and it’s absolutely delicious.

I used a powdered mix for this particular batch, and it made one quart. There’s nothing like my old almost 40-year-old blender for mixing this – it still works great!

Next clean, hull, and quarter about 1 cup of strawberries and add them to the blender. I have made this using an entire pack of berries, and that was delicious, too. Can you ever really have too many strawberries? I think not.

Blend away and there you go. Done.

As I remember, when I used more berries, it didn’t separate like this, but isn’t it pretty?!! You can strain out the strawberry bits, if you want to, but why not enjoy the health benefits and leave it all in there?

Add some ice, a straw (paper, of course – for environmental reasons), and a strawberry garnish and you have a beautiful, delightful, refreshing drink for summertime.

Just remember this recipe when the weather gets hot and humid and you need something new to try – maybe add a shot of vodka for more of an adult beverage! It’s so refreshing and delicious. Invite the neighbors over and offer them a glass of this Strawberry Lemonade – you’ll be the most popular neighbor in the whole wide neighborhood!

 

 

 

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Sugar Cookies #3

Today’s recipe is for Sugar Cookies #3. Yes – I have already made two different kinds of sugar cookies on this blog, and this is the 3rd. I have also made several different kinds of sugar cookies. This recipe is from the recipe book our family made for my sister years ago, and it came from my other grandma. Originally it came from a family friend who was a great cook and baker. My other grandma was also a great baker, and she loved baking for her family. This photo is of her parents – my great-grandparents. I think they were living in town at the time this photo was taken, but it looks like my great-grandpa kept his bib overalls on – even if it wasn’t on the farm!

They’re so cute! I love my great-grandma’s apron!

This recipe made 2 cookies short of 5 dozen (I used my scoop for this batch).

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Sugar Cookies #3

Cream together:

1 cup margarine or butter (I used butter)

1 cup vegetable oil

1 cup sugar

1 cup powdered sugar

Add:

2 eggs

1 Tablespoon vanilla

Mix together and add to first mixture:

4 cups plus 4 Tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Chill (I chilled this dough about 1 hour).

Roll in balls (I used my scoop because the dough seemed a little dry and didn’t hold together as well as I thought it would).

Bake at 325 degrees until edges are lightly browned (in my oven this took about 20 minutes).

The ingredients for these cookies are pretty simple and straightforward. It’s one of those recipe where you probably have all the ingredients in our kitchen at any given time. My scoop is for days when I’m feeling particularly lazy and just want to get the cookies done faster. Feel free to roll the dough into balls by hand if you want to.

I love how they look when using the scoop – almost like little roses.

Time for coffee?

These cookies are so tender and melt in your mouth! They’re absolutely delicious. I think you should try them with a scoop of Homemade Ice Cream, a glass of ice-cold Lemonade, or Curried Fruit Compote. However you decide to enjoy them, you’re gonna love these Sugar Cookies #3!

 

 

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Shrimp Rolls

I made up this recipe for Shrimp Rolls because my son loves shrimp. Fried shrimp, shrimp cocktail, fresh shrimp, shrimp salad, shrimp dip . . . on and on and on. He is also a HUGE fan of Old Bay Seasoning. We try to use it whenever we can. One hot summer day, I was wishing we lived closer to the ocean so we could enjoy a lobster roll without having to search all over the Twin Cities for lobster. I though about having a delicious lobster roll until it hit me – everyone loves lobster rolls, so why not try to make a shrimp roll? Frozen cooked shrimp are easier to find in these parts than frozen cooked lobster. These have now become a summer staple for our family and I end up making them several times throughout the season. We’ve already had them once this year, and it won’t be the last time.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Shrimp Rolls

Thaw a one pound package of frozen shrimp in the refrigerator overnight. How big the shrimp should be depends on how you want to fix it. I have used bigger shrimp and then cut them into pieces, but for this batch, I used smaller shrimp and there was no need to cut them.

Mix together:

1/2-1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon dill weed

1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning, or more to taste

Juice of 1/2 a lemon

salt and pepper to taste

Add:

1/2 cup celery, chopped

3 green onions, chopped

Toss in:

the thawed shrimp

Serve in hot dog buns on a bed of chopped lettuce.

This is a fast and easy lunch or dinner recipe. It’s great on a hot summer night when you don’t want to heat up your kitchen.

It’s easier to mix the mayonnaise mixture first and then add the vegetables and shrimp.

Oh yes – one more squeeze of lemon and you’re having a delicious dinner on the deck.

Try this light and refreshing summer lunch or dinner. You may need an extra napkin depending on how full you fill the bun. This recipe is quick, easy, and absolutely delicious. It would be good at a picnic or at the beach – hey, it’s good anywhere! You might as well do it – make some of these Shrimp Rolls tonight!

 

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Julie’s Margaritas

My friend Julie makes the best Margaritas. Julie is one of my group of friends called the Coffee Babes. We all met when our daughters played volleyball together. All of us were on the board of the volleyball club our daughters were part of, and a couple of us met the morning after our board meetings to discuss the minutes and what would go into a newsletter that I was in charge of. This started 20 years ago, and there were still 4 of us meeting every Friday morning for coffee (no longer talking about volleyball, but everything else under the sun) until last year when we lost one of our dear Coffee Babes to cancer. We aren’t just friends, we’re family, and they mean the world to me. The final 3 of us are still meeting every Friday for coffee, talk, and our weekly therapy session together. Seriously – we say this all the time – if we had put the money into a jar every week that we would have spent on therapy with an actual doctor, we could have a great vacation in the Bahamas by now!! We have taken occasional trips together over the years, and on one of those trips, Julie shared her recipe for these amazing Margaritas. Let’s just say they went over well. Real well. Even with those of us who usually have a problem with tequila. Ha! Well, now that it’s June, it is officially summer, so make up a big batch of these Margaritas, pull together some of The Easiest Nachos Ever, and call up some friends to come over and enjoy them with you!

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Julie’s Margaritas

For one drink –

I use a 1 ounce shot glass.

Use a wedge of lime to wet the rim of a highball glass.

Dip rim of glass in kosher salt.

Fill glass with ice.

Add:

1/2 shot Grand Marnier

1 1/2 shots Jose Cuervo Gold

1 1/2 shots Patron

3 1/2 shots Margarita Mix

Stir gently (so you don’t knock the salt off of the rim of the glass).

Garnish with a wedge or slice of lime and a straw, if desired.

For six drinks –

Mix in a pitcher:

3 ounces Grand Mariner

9 ounces Jose Cuervo Gold

9 ounces Patron

21 ounces Margarita Mix

Salt the rims of your glasses first – you can’t do it after your get the liquid in the glass! đŸ™‚

I just mix the drinks in the glass. It’s really hard to just have one of these, but one is usually enough for me. But then again – they’re just SOOOO good!

Serve with chips and salsa or The Easiest Nachos Ever – take your pick.

If you like margaritas, you’ll love these! They’re so delicious and refreshing – perfect for summer! You could make a batch (or two or three) and pack them up to take to the cabin. Believe me – they’re the best! They’re really great on the raft while sunbathing in the afternoon or at the end of a dock while watching a sunset. Make up a batch of Julie’s Margaritas and call up some friends.

 

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