Rhubarb Crunch from Emily at It Bakes Me Happy.

Happy Friday, everyone!  It is my pleasure to share this space today with Emily from the blog It Bakes Me Happy.  Emily had linked up with the Creative Me Linky Party and her photos were so beautiful that I just had to pop over and see the rest of her blog.  It Bakes Me Happy is a great blog where you’ll find some of the most delicious looking recipes, like Monster Brownies, Angel Food Cupcakes, and Chocolate Cherry Loaf.  Are you drooling yet?  Today Emily is treating us to one of her favorite family recipes.  Take it away, Emily!
 
I love to share family recipes, to me there is something so special about passing on a recipe; most importantly the feeling that I have for a specific one. Today I am sharing with you one of my absolute favorite recipes of my childhood, Rhubarb Crunch. I had two very hard working parents growing up and so incidentally I don’t have those memories of fresh baked goodies after school, that some of you might have. But this recipe is one in particular I can remember my mother making on Sunday evenings or for special occasions and she passed it on to me when I left for college. Incidentally we have both misplaced the original recipe and so this is my recreation of the family classic. I just love the sweet and tangy flavors of this crisp, we always ate it warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. So next time you are in the mood for a dessert a little out of the ordinary, check the freezer section of your local grocery store for some rhubarb (or if you’re lucky enough for it to be in season the produce department). I hope you’ll enjoy, happy baking!

 

 

Ingredients:

8 oz rhubarb, chopped (I used frozen)

1 Tbs flour

1 Tbs corn starch

1 Tbs sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/2 Tbs butter, diced

For the topping:

1/2 c oats, old fashioned

1 1/2 Tbs sugar

1 1/2 Tbs brown sugar

1 Tbs flour

2 Tbs butter

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 375º and prepare a small baking dish (5″x7″) with cooking spray; set aside. In a medium sized bowl add the rhubarb, flour, corn starch, sugar and cinnamon; toss to coat. Spread the rhubarb mixture evenly over the bottom of the baking pan and dot with the 1/2 Tbs butter. In a small bowl combine the oats, sugars and flour, cut in the butter with your fingers until the mixture is crumbly. Spread the topping mixture over the rhubarb and bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour, until bubbly and golden on top. Carefully remove from the oven to cool 8-10 minutes, serve warm.

Yields 4 servings

Frozen Chicken Soup.

 

Hello everyone! It’s Tiffany from The Nesting Project here to address an important issue in the month of January and during flu season: homemade chicken soup.  The unfortunate thing about homemade chicken soup is that when you need it your are usually least likely to feel like making it. So I’m going to share a process that I’ve come up with that helps me make sure I always have some on hand for my family or even care packages for friends who end up needing a little extra food TLC.

One of my favorite things to freeze soups and purees in is Mason jars. While I love canning I rarely need to do that when I can just stick it in the freezer. I did this for all the baby food I made for my daughter this year. I would just freeze it in Mason jars and then defrost it one at a time. The trick to doing this is make sure you leave room at the top (I leave about an inch). Another good thing about this is that when I make soups I always have so much left over and we rarely finish it all even when I try. So instead of having to throw it away I fill up Mason jars and then we have it for another meal the next week. Another way I use this? Tomato sauce. I make a large batch and fill up Mason jars and I have fresh tomato sauce all month.

Now back to my chicken soup. Whenever I roast a chicken or during a busy week get a rotisserie chicken I never throw away the bones. Usually there is plenty of bits of chicken left that make the perfect addition for chicken soup. To make this less time consuming I add chicken stock to it and the pasta into the soup instead of cooking it before. Everything goes in the pot and simmers for a couple of hours and then I have chicken soup for dinner or in mason jars as insurance against a cold.

It’s definitely one of those pantry staples you should try to have on hand for you or your loved ones.

 

Chicken Soup

Bones from 1 leftover roasted chicken

3 medium sliced carrots

3 medium stalks of celery chopped

1/2 of a medium onion chopped

4 cloves of garlic minced

6 cups water

6 cups chicken stock

6 oz Rotini pasta (roughly 1/2 a box)

2 tbsp of olive oil

2 tbsp of Italian seasoning

Salt and pepper to taste

 

In a stockpot add the olive oil, onion and garlic and cook on medium-high until translucent. Add the celery and carrots and cook for about 3 minutes. Add the chicken stock and water. Then add the chicken bones along with the Italian Season. Reduce to a simmer and let cook for 1.5 to 2 hours. During the last 30 minutes take out the bones and clean any chicken meat off and put into the soup. Then add the pasta and finish cooking until it’s al dente.

Let cool and put into sterilized Mason jars while leaving at least an inch at the top. Add the tops and put in freezer.

 

 

GROW Method: Less.

I got a little bit behind on my GROW Method posts, but better late than ever… this is just too important of an issue to let go.  The next principle in the GROW Method is LESS.

LESS Meat and LESS Dairy.

This is an easy one that every one can incorporate into their weekly meal plan, don’t you think?  ”But why?”, you may ask.

Did you know that if you eat a little less meat and a little less dairy you can greatly reduce the impact that your eating choices have on the environment?  It’s true!  Here’s a shocking little factoid for you:

One pound of ground beef for your family uses 28,000 cups of water to produce!!! That’s enough to fill more than 20 bathtubs to the brim!

Did you have any idea?  I didn’t.  I had no clue that water even factored into the equation.

Here’s what our family is doing to make this GROW Method principle a part of our lives.  We use many dairy alternatives in our daily lives.  We have substituted coconut products for many of the dairy products that we used to use every day.  Here are some examples:

  • Instead of butter we use coconut oil (Spectrum is my favorite.  It tastes great and when the jar is empty the label comes right off and it perfect for crafts!) for many things- think grilled cheese sandwiches. :)
  • We use almond milk in our cereal instead of cow’s milk.
  • I use coconut milk when I bake.
  • We buy coconut ice cream as a non-dairy alternative and let me tell you, it is so delicious!

We also eat a lot less meat than we used to.  Admittedly, this is partly us trying to tame the grocery budget a bit.  The economy has not been kind to any of us and I’m sure you all are paying more for groceries and gas these days just as we are.  We are committed to buying healthy foods for our family, so many times this means that we are eating high quality meat, but much less of it.  We are eating more salads, soups, sandwiches, quesadillas, beans and rice and so on.

What are some things that your family can do to follow the GROW Method principle of eating LESS Meat and Dairy?
What are some things you are already doing?
Don’t forget to post about it and join the GROW Method link up on the 23rd!