Lentil and Barley Stew

1/4 c butter
1/3 c chopped onion
1/2 c chopped celery
2 and 1/2 c skinned chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
2 c water
1/2 c dried brown lentils, picked over and washed
1/3 c pot barley
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp rosemary
1/3 c grated carrots

Melt the butter and sauté the onions till tender. Add celery and sauté another five minutes.
Add remaining ingredients except carrot.
Bring to a boil, cover and simmer gently 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add carrots and cook five minutes longer or until barley and lentils are tender.

I made Cornmeal Dumplings with these so it was a good thing I used about a half-cup more water than this recipe called for and probably an extra half-cup of canned diced tomatoes too. With the dumplings the dish could've used even more broth.

We had this stew with brown rice. It made a tasty and filling bowl.

Where this recipe came from, I cannot say. It's on a photocopied sheet of paper taped into the old binder where I keep my stray recipes. On the same sheet are recipes for lentil-millet patties, lentil stew, lentil loaf and lentil burgers. Woo hoo! I love lentils.


Potato Pancakes

I like potatoes, but I get tired of having them boiled, baked, and fried ... and we eat them regularly because Mr. Stubblejumper cannot get enough potatoes potatoes potatoes. He'd eat them three time a day, every day, and never complain. I think he's actually disappointed when we have pasta or rice. I make scalloped potatoes and potato soup and so on, and last night I tried these pancakes and loved them. I was afraid all that oil they soaked up might give us a bellyache later, but it didn't. 

Preheat oven to 200F.

4 large potatoes, peeled and grated
1 yellow onion, grated
Squeeze out or drain off the extra liquid.

1 egg, beaten
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp flour
pepper to taste

I had run out of onions (banish the thought!), so threw in the little bit of onion left in the fridge and added a teaspoon or so each of onion powder and garlic powder.

Use enough vegetable or canola oil to cover the bottom of a heavy frying pan to about 1/4 inch. The original recipe calls for two cups, but it will depend upon the size of the pan. It also says to cook over medium-high heat, but the oil started smoking so I turned the heat down to medium.

Gently squeeze 1/4-cup scoops into loose balls and set them into the hot oil, then use a fork to flatten them to a half-inch. Fry, turning once, until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and keep warm in the oven till they're all cooked.

Because of the oil, I won't make these often. But because they're so damn delicious, I surely will make them again. Emil and I shared the leftover one today, and it was even good cold.

Original recipe: http://allrecipes.com


Cornmeal Dumplings

These were made last night to go with a stew of chicken thighs with sautéed onion, celery and garlic. I'm nuts about cornbread so these dumplings were right up my alley.

Have your stew/soup/stock simmering.

Sift together:
1 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

In another bowl, beat:
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk

Combine the two mixtures and stir in:
1 tablespoon melted butter

Drop the batter from a spoon into the hot liquid. Cover the pan and simmer for about 15 minutes.

*Original recipe: The Joy of Cooking. It says "remove them at once from the liquor." I didn't and they were still delicious.


Grandma Benson's Boiled Salad Dressing

This was a staple in Grandma's kitchen.

3/4 c sugar
1 c vinegar
1 and 1/2 c water
2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp mustard
1 tsp salt
3 eggs, beaten

Combine ingredients and cook until thick in double-boiler over medium heat.
It will keep in the fridge for a month.
I use it in potato salad and cole slaw, and even on tossed salads.


Cream of Celery Soup

3 tb butter or vegetable oil
3 c chopped celery
1 c chopped onion
1 lb potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 c milk
1 c chicken or vegetable broth (I used a cup of water and a tablespoon of miso paste)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp celery seed
1/4 tsp pepper
1 c grated cheddar

Saute celery 20 minutes or till soft. Set aside 1/2 c celery.
Add onion to sauteed celery and saute another 7 minutes.
Add next 6 ingredients; cover and simmer 40 minutes.
Cool 10 minutes.
Blend soup and cheese 1/3 at a time.
Add reserved celery and heat through.
Top with toasted slivered almonds. I didn't have any, but wouldn't that be delicious!

This would be just as good without being blended; you could just mash a couple cups of it for thickening the broth, and leave the rest for chunky texture.


Grief Bath

Grief Bath ☂
3 drops sweet marjoram
3 drops lavender
3 drops rose
1 drop cypress

Have you lost a loved one? Measure this into the water while running your bath.
You need all the help you can get, and this won't hurt a bit. 


Chocolate Macaroons

Chocolate Macaroons:

Bring to a boil over medium heat, and boil four minutes:
2 c sugar
1/2 c butter
1/2 c milk
1/2 c cocoa

3 c oatmeal
1 c coconut
1 tsp vanilla

Working quickly, drop by teaspoonful onto wax paper and leave to cool.

This was a common treat in our household when I was growing up.