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November 2010 Chickens in the Road Newsletter

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November 2010 Chickens in the Road Newsletter

IN THIS ISSUE:

*Feature: Dark

*Kitchen Extra: Fried Dressing?

*My Favorite Thing Right Now: Soy Blend Wax

*Recent Highlights: Chocolate Spa Soap, Picking Up Sticks, Chicken Fried Steak, and More

*Sneak Peek: Holiday Crafts Circa 1950

*Farm Bell Recipes: Poor Man Cookies

*Blast from the Past: Holiday Marshmallow Pops

*Feature: Dark

It’s nearing winter and I don’t like the dark. I can’t see, I can’t see! Or maybe I can and I’m just hysterical, but it’s still dark and I don’t like it. I like light. I miss the light. The dark makes me want to go to bed, even though it’s only 6 o’clock.

Dark is bad.

It’s not good people.

Just try to find anyone who likes it. I’m going to start a petition to end dark’s terroristic reign!

Clover: “I like the dark because I get dinner at 4:30!”

Sugar: “I like to catch mice in the dark.”

Glory Bee: “I can hide from you in the dark.”

Spartacus: “I need the extra roosting time to get in touch with myself.”

Dookie: “Dark? What is light?”

I can see they will be no help, but in the good news department, the days start getting longer again on December 21! And in the meantime, I’m going to go find my doggy clippers…. I promise. If I can find them in the dark….

*Kitchen Extra: Fried Dressing?

At Georgia‘s house, they always have fried dressing on holidays. That’s right. Fried dressing. I’ve never heard of that in my life. I tasted some at Georgia’s house one time. It’s actually really good. But. It’s just not dressing–not to me, because like most people, the only dressing is my momma’s dressing. And she sure didn’t fry it!! To fry dressing, if you want to try this, make whatever is your favorite dressing recipe. Add just enough broth to form it into sausage-like patties. Fry in butter. Note: They did try deep-frying the stuffing in the turkey fryer last year and that didn’t work. The stuffing fell apart. If you want to try that, maybe start with a recipe for hush puppies and make stuffing-flavored hush puppies?!

You’re never too old to try something new. Georgia found a recipe in the county paper for crock pot dressing and she’s lobbying to break tradition next year and serve crock pot dressing. (She’s a rebel.)

And on top of that, this year she served a couple of new twists on holiday standbys. Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie–spicy apple butter in place of some of the pumpkin in the recipe, and Sweet Potato Balls–spiced sweet potato wrapped around marshmallows.

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie.

Sweet Potato Balls.

I tasted both of these and they were delicious! Find all these recipes here:

Crock Pot Dressing

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie

Sweet Potato Balls

*My Favorite Thing Right Now: Soy Blend Wax

Single-pour soy blend wax. Where has it been all my life?

I’ve been buying candle wax at a craft store, but I finally decided to try soy blend wax and buy it from a soap- and candle-making supplier online. (There are many–just do a search. I got mine from Wellington Fragrance.) Best. Wax. Ever. I will never go back to regular container wax. You can make a candle in one pour without having it forming a well you have to go back and fill in. The wax is also a lot easier to work with when the candle is burned down and you want to scrape out the bottom to recycle the leftover wax and re-use the jar. (Soy blend wax is softer, so it scrapes out more easily.)

See more about how to make candles and fun candlemaking ideas here.

*Recent Highlights: Chocolate Spa Soap, Picking Up Sticks, Chicken Fried Steak, and More

I felt like a cowboy the day we disbudded Glory Bee–Call Me the Wrangler–but she and BP brought me to my knees in Morning, with Angry Cows. It was a long, hard month with the bad baby, but I’m on the right track now with my 4-H Project. Find all my farm animal stories here.

My new favorite shortcut ever–see how to make White Sauce Butter Balls! Then try them out in a couple of my favorite recipes: Caramelized Onions Au Gratin and Chicken Fried Steak. Don’t miss a thing in my kitchen! Get all my recipes.

Are you ready? I’m making Final Preparations for Winter. Each Morning at the Milk Stand is a little bit colder, and you know it’s the end of fall when football’s done. Here, it’s the close of a chapter, too. Read my retrospective of five years as a football mom in The End of an Era. See all my country living stories.

Make Chocolate Spa Soap then get everything organized in Craft Supplies Storage. Need an easy table decoration? See my Holiday Centerpiece. Browse all my posts in crafts.

I’ve been planting Hens and Chicks and Shooting Up Logs, but the most important outdoor job right now means walking in the woods and Picking Up Sticks. Be sure to see all my garden stories.

*Sneak Peak: Holiday Crafts Circa 1950

My two favorite grande dames:

MMHoney, left; Georgia, right. Look how MMHoney doesn’t even know Morgan is about to eat her ear off. Teenagers, you can’t take them anywhere. (Photo from several weeks ago when I took Georgia to meet MMHoney.)

In keeping with my homemade holiday theme, in December I’ll be posting nostalgic crafts from MMHoney and Georgia. Free or nearly free, and full of sometimes cheesy but oh-so-fun vintage festivity, these crafts will take you back! Get a further sneak peek into the crafts by checking out MMHoney’s craft stash here and Georgia’s craft stash here. Start collecting foam cartons, old paperbacks, English walnuts, and paper doilies!

*Farm Bell Recipes: Poor Man Cookies

This recipe was posted by community member Diane and I loved its out-of-the-pantry ingredients list so I gave it a whirl in my oven. This makes a delicious, spicy treat–with a soft cake-like consistency. Easy, budget-friendly, and just right for those times coming up when the weather is too bad to go out to the store. You probably already have everything you need on hand!

How to make Poor Man Cookies:

1 cup raisins cooked in 1 1/2 cups water
1 cup liquid from raisins
1/2 cup shortening dissolved in hot raisin sauce
1 egg
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chopped nuts

Cook raisins and drain, reserving raisin sauce. Dissolve shortening in hot raisin sauce. (Maybe I simmered my raisins too long–after I drained them and added them to the mixture, I only had 3/4 cup of raisin sauce left. I just added some hot water to make a cup.) Beat egg and sugar in a medium-size bowl. Combine all ingredients together with the egg/sugar mixture. Mix well. Pour onto a greased flower cookie sheet. Bake 20 minutes at 375 degrees. Cool then ice with a glaze or just sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Cut into bars.

For a powdered sugar icing, I combined 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, and enough milk (one to two teaspoons) for drizzling consistency.

My only question with this recipe was what is a flower cookie sheet??? I just went on with it and made this recipe using a standard-size brownie pan. But now I keep thinking I need a flower cookie sheet….! Just because! (Anyone ever heard of a flower cookie sheet? What is a flower cookie sheet? I must know.)

See Diane’s recipe on Farm Bell Recipes to save it to your recipe box and get the handy print page: Poor Man Cookies.

Would you like to contribute a post to the community blog at Farm Bell Recipes? You can! See all the information here for submissions. We’d love to hear your voice!

November Farm Bell Recipes blog contributors:

Beth — One Old Goat
bonita
Charley Cooke — Cooke’s Frontier
CindyP — Chippewa Creek ~ Our Life Simplified
Jessica Tibbets — A Day In Earnest
Jim in Colorado — Granddad’s Corner
kellyb — Yahoo’s Canning2
Larissa — The Henway
Miss Mae — Miss Mae
Mrs. Turkey
Patrice — Everyday Ruralty
Sheryl — Providence Acres
Tammy Merrill

THANK YOU! Please give them a visit!

*Blast from the Past: Holiday Marshmallow Pops

Possibly the cutest, easiest candy you’ll ever make.

IMG_7712

You can make these adorable Holiday Marshmallow Pops in thirty minutes from start to finish! Get the recipe here on CITR. You can also find it at Farm Bell Recipes.

***

Know a friend who would enjoy receiving the Chickens in the Road newsletter? Send them over to Chickens in the Road and tell them to sign up with the newsletter link in the sidebar or send them this handy link.

And, always, feel free to forward this newsletter!

Thank you for your comments, your support, and just for being there. Here’s hoping to see you on the Chickens in the Road Forum (make friends, have fun, come join us!) and every day on the farmhouse blog!

Love,
Suzanne

*More Handy Links:
CITR on Twitter
CITR on Facebook
CITR on YouTube

What are you fixing for supper tonight? Browse the goodness at Farm Bell Recipes — your cooking community!

*I’m giving away a Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving once a week (sometimes more!) so don’t forget to watch the blog for The Ball Blue Book Project days.

And don’t forget! Get the 2011 Chickens in the Road Calendar, the Farm Babies edition!

You can buy it here: The 2011 Chickens in the Road Calendar.

Go to Chickens in the Road now.

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The Slanted Little House

"It was a cold wintry day when I brought my children to live in rural West Virginia. The farmhouse was one hundred years old, there was already snow on the ground, and the heat was sparse-—as was the insulation. The floors weren’t even, either. My then-twelve-year-old son walked in the door and said, “You’ve brought us to this slanted little house to die." Keep reading our story....



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