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My Grandma passed away at the age of 94. She was a wonderful cook and I was lucky enough to inherit her recipes. Many date back to the 1940s and 50s. Grandma prepared them in a charming country kitchen with no running water and most of her produce came from her garden, not from the grocery store. These are made-from-scratch recipes. I wish I had spent more time with her in the kitchen and . . . I wish I had spent more time with her for so many other reasons.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Rosemary-Thyme Vegetables

Grandma had great fall weather recipes.  This is the perfect cool weather, one pan, in the oven recipe for Sunday dinner.

1 1/2 tsp Thyme leaves
1 tsp Paprika
1 tsp Rosemary leaves
1 tsp Sea Salt
1 lb red potatoes (unpeeled and cut into 1" chunks)
1 cup baby carrots
1 medium white onion (cut into 1 1/2" chunks)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 pork tenderloin (about 1 lb)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Mix Thyme, Paprika, Rosemary and sea salt in a small bowl.  Set aside.   Place potatoes, onions and carrots in a medium bowl.  Add oil and 1 Tbsp of the spice mixture;  toss to coat well.  Place vegetables in single layer on foil lined 15 x 10 x 1" baking pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Bake 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Meanwhile, coat pork evenly with remaining 1 1/2 tsp spice mixture.  Push vegetables to one side of the pan.  Place pork on other side of pan.  Bake 20 minutes longer or until pork is desired doneness, stirring vegetables occasionally.  Place pork on cutting board.  Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.

Meanwhile, scrape pan drippings with spatula and stir to incorporate into the vegetables.  Lift foil edges to seal the vegetables in a pouch.  Let stand 5 minutes to allow vegetables to absorb flavors.  Serve vegetables with sliced pork.

This recipe serves four.  There are six in our family.  We double it and there are no leftovers.  Everyone loves it.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Grandma's Blueberry Muffins

Grandma didn't have the luxury of going to the grocery store for her blueberries.  She grew them herself.  When you start to feel sorry for yourself when you come home and have to fix dinner, think about what it must have been like in the 1940s and 50s or even earlier to fix dinner for your family.  There was little or no frozen produce, and certainly no microwave.  Food favorites were prepared whenever foods were in season.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
4 Tbsp melted butter
1 large egg (beaten)
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp milk
1 cup blueberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a muffin pan with 12 paper muffin cups or spray with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.  Stir in the sugar.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted butter, egg and milk.  Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and whisk until just blended (mixture should be slightly lumpy).

Add the blueberries to bowl and stir them in just enough to combine.

Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups.  Bake the muffins until golden  brown.  (18 - 24) minutes.  Remove from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool.  Muffins are best served warm.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Orange Cream Layered Dessert

The  best part of Grandma's meals was always dessert.  So much time and effort went into everything she made for us.

2 cups orange sherbet (softened)
1 pkg (8 oz) Cream Cheese (softened)
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup orange juice
1 tub (8 oz) Cool Whip (thawed)

Line a 9" x 5" loaf pan with foil.  Spread sherbet onto bottom of prepared pan to form an even layer.  Freeze 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat cream cheese in large bowl with mixer until creamy.  Gradually add condensed milk and juice, beating until blended.  Whisk in Cool Whip; spread over sherbet in pan.

Freeze 3 hours.  To unmold, invert pan onto plate; remove foil.

This is pretty - and it's delicious!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

AARP Create the Good Event for Feed My People

Today was an awesome day!  Please click on the link to Karan's Kitchen to find the details and pictures of our event.  It was such a success.  We're feeling really good about it.!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Grandma's Night Before French Toast

Holiday meals at Grandma's house were always special.  Her love was always there in her food.  As a youngster, I didn't understand that, but it's very clear to me now.  I only hope I can become close to the cook she was.  This recipe was a family favorite, and I think Grandma liked it because it could be prepared the night before.

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter (melted)
3 tsp ground cinnamon
3 tart apples (I like Granny Smith) peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1/2 cup raisins (I like to substitute Craisins (dried cranberries))
1 loaf Italian or French bread, cut into 1" slices
6 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1 Tbsp vanilla extract

Mix brown sugar, butter and 1 tsp of the cinnamon in 13 x 9" baking dish.  Add apples and cranberries; stir to coat well.  Spread evenly in bottom of baking dish.  Arrange slices of bread on top.

Mix eggs, milk, vanilla and remaining 2 tsp cinnamon until well blended.  Pour mixture over bread, soaking bread completely.  Cover with foil.  Refrigerate 4 hours or up to 24 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Bake, covered for 45 minutes.  Uncover and bake 5 minutes longer.  Let stand 5 minutes before serving.  For an eye-catching presentation, loosen edges with small knife.  Invert onto large serving platter.