Rhode’s Butterscotch Rolls

 ( I put a roll on the plate, went to get my camera, came back and viola! )

You know how much we love traditions in this family.  These rolls are players on 2 different holidays:  Christmas and the 4th of July.  Before we open a single present, we have taken these rolls out of the oven and everyone has 1 or 2 to maintain their strength for the great present extravaganza.  And what would the 4th of July be if we didn’t have a roll or 2 before we head down to the annual community games.

This is a super simple recipe, but it looks like you put some time into it.  I prefer them with nuts, they remind me of the pecan rolls my mom used to make.  Unfortunately the kids prefer them nut-free.  Sigh!  You know I’m going to always let my kiddos win.

Don’t forget to start them rising the night before.  This Christmas, I may have forgotten due to______________ (I’ll think of something), but was able to put a speed rise on them and Christmas was saved.  Hooray!  You will love these.

 

25 to 26 frozen Rhode’s dinner rolls

3 ounce box butterscotch pudding, not instant

¾ cup brown sugar

1 ½ cubes butter

½ cup chopped pecans

In an ungreased Bundt pan, put a layer of chopped pecans if you are so inclined.  Arrange rolls next.  Sprinkle the whole box of dry pudding over rolls.  Melt butter and add brown sugar.  Stir to blend and pour over rolls.  Cover and let rise overnight.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.  Let cool in pan approximately 15 minutes and then invert on a plate.

*  From the Recipe Box:

I’ve been making these for Christmas morning for years.  The kids might not think it’s Christmas without them.

I originally got the recipe from Barbara.  We constantly try to one up the other with a new recipe.  I really owe her for this one.

Once we bought the cabin, they became a part of that tradition as well.

and remember:  There comes a time in life when you have to let go of all the pointless drama and the people who create it and surround yourself with people who make you laugh so hard that you forget the bad and focus only on the good.  After all, life is too short to be anything but happy.  Big kiss, Lynn

Morning Glory Muffins

I look back now and laugh at the idea of a healthy muffin.  These are good, they don’t taste very sweet, they have veggies and lots of fiber, but good for me?  I don’t know.  They were great in a lunch sack for the boys.  At least, I think they ate them; I found out years later they never ate the oranges.  Who knew?

This really goes back to the Norwegian tradition of Hygge.  It’s that cozy time with a cup of coffee or tea, a time to connect with a friend or a moment for yourself.  I may just give up on scones altogether.  Muffins and I seem to do ever so much better.  These also got the seal of approval from the Hunka-hunka.

Keep your eye on the baking time.  It will really vary depending on how juicy your apple is and how moist your batter is.  I think you are going to be really surprised at the lack of sweetness considering all the sweet additions the basic recipe has.  Enjoy a little Hygge time.

2 cups all-purpose flour

1-1/4 cups sugar

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs

1 cup oil

1 medium apple, shredded, approximately 1/2 to 1 cup ( I used Honey Crisp, my favorite eating apple.  I won’t next time, I’ll go with a Braeburn or a Granny Smith.  You don’t want the apple too juicy.  Maybe that’s why they took longer to bake than mom’s did.)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups grated carrot

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

In large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In another bowl, combine the eggs, oil, apple and vanilla. Stir into the dry ingredients just until combined. Fold in the carrot, raisins, coconut and pecans.

Fill 18 paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. I used a large ice cream scoop.  Bake at 350° for 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Mom’s oven must have been warmer than mine.  I ended up baking the muffins for 22 minutes and I think they could have used a little longer.

*   From the Recipe Box:

This was in mom’s recipe box, how very hippy-dippy of her.  These were supposed to be a very healthy muffin.

My favorite Gkid, you know the one, said they were the best muffins she ever ate.  This was after her 5th or 9th.

and remember:  One of the hardest things in life to learn is which bridges to cross and which bridges to burn.  Big kiss, Lynn

Baked French Toast

As I’ve told you before, the family loves getting together for brunch.  You can spend several hours with people you love and still have a whole day ahead of you.  We seem to go 2 ways with our brunch menu:  pancakes, which is labor intensive and you simply can’t feed everyone at once, or baked french toast, which you take out of the oven and, voilà, it’s breakfast!

Unfortunately, this is another recipe for which I can’t give the proper credit.  I’ve been making it for so long, I don’t even recognize the handwriting on the recipe card.  My bad.  The original recipe also calls for sliced strawberries placed on top when you take it out of the oven, but I’m simply not a fan (maybe you will be).

During the summer, we have lots of overnight company.  I love being able to mix this up before going to bed, storing it in the refrigerator and taking it out in the morning ready to go into the oven.  It tastes equally good warmed in the microwave, which is not true of pancakes.  There is so much coming and going when the weather is good.  Fishing is hot, crab season is open, the pool is calling, the beach is beckoning, having a breakfast like this is a nice change from bagels.  Even though I do love my bagels, especially since we discovered The Bagel Factory here on the Island.  Sorry, I’m rambling again; I’m ready for summer.

1 small 8 or 9 ounce loaf French bread

3 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 ¼ cups milk

½ cup flour

6 tablespoons brown sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

¼ cup butter

1 cup blueberries

Grease a 9 x 13 pan.  Cut 1” slices of bread and lay tightly in pan.  Combine eggs, sugar and vanilla, stir in milk.  Pour mixture over bread, turning bread to coat well.  Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Combine flour, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Cut in butter until it looks crumbly.  Turn over bread, scatter blueberries over bread and cover with the crumb mixture.  Bake 40 minutes.  Cut into squares.

*  From the Recipe Box:

Great brunch recipe.

I don’t care how sweet you think these will be, I still want syrup.

and remember:  Doesn’t being scared let you know you’re onto something?  If you’re not scared, you’re not taking a chance.  If you’re not taking a chance, then what the hell are you doing?  Big kiss, Lynn

 

Baked Apple Muffins

I’ve discovered over the years that you are either a scone person or a muffin person.  I really want to be a scone person because they seem more sophisticated, but I never make them, I always gravitate to muffin recipes.  Scones in my kitchen always end up as hockey pucks or worse.  I definitely need a scone tutorial, but in the mean time I want you to taste the best muffin of all time!

I started doing an in-depth search of mom’s recipes this weekend and this one was featured prominently.  She was a harsh critic of what she made and had the tasted buds to back up her judgments.  She would write in her cookbooks or on her recipe cards notes to remind herself of each recipe.  My favorite:  “You would be a fool to make this again!”   This one was given her very rare and elusive “perfect” recommendation.

While I’m putting this in the breakfast category, I’ve never thought of muffins as breakfast food.  Instead, I think of them for a coffee break or afternoon recharge.  This one is so typical of Scandinavians.  The muffins are ever so soft.  The apple taste is in balance.  Since each muffin is dipped in melted butter, you don’t even need to butter them when served, but of course I do since you can’t have too much butter.  I promise you will love these.

1 1/2 cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 cup Crisco

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup milk

1 cup grated apple

1/4 cup melted butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Sift together the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, salt and nutmeg.  Cut in the shortening until crumbly.  Stir in the egg and milk.  Fold in the grated apples.  Fill  greased muffin cups 1/2 full.

Bake at 350 degrees 20 to 25 minutes.  Cool slightly until you are comfortably able to pick a muffin up.  Combine cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl.  Dip tops of each muffin in melted butter and then in cinnamon sugar mixture.  Makes 12 truly nummy muffins.

*   From the Recipe Box:

I don’t even peel the apples.  Whether red or green, the flecks of color add to the look of the muffins.  They do need to be tart though, like a Granny Smith or a Braeburn.

I did screw up making this batch.  I rarely use paper liners when baking these.  You can’t easily dip them into the melted butter and cinnamon sugar mixture.  I had to spoon both over the top.  The flavor wasn’t as concentrated.

and remember:  Last year, lettuce killed more Americans than undocumented aliens.  Big kiss, Lynn

McSanta Waffles

I am so lucky, McSanta brought me a Millennium Falcon Waffle Iron for Christmas.  I know, you are all totally jealous.  If you know me, you know of my all consuming love of all things Star Wars.  Just think of how much more fabulous my waffles are going to taste when they are cooked in the shape of the Falcon.  Back in the old days, I rarely made waffles.  I could only make 1 at a time and I didn’t want civil war to break out over whose waffle was next, but now it’s just the 2 of us and 1 of us is really patient.

We have 2 distinct types of waffle eaters:  the peanut butter and syrup eater and the sour cream and jam eater and each waffle can be eaten in about 4, maybe 5 bites.  We’re horrible.  While there is no way to hurry waffle production; I’ve tried, trust me, there is also no way to slow waffle consumption.  These do stay nice and crispy in the oven set at 200 degrees though.

 

 

I have been using the same recipe forever.  It does have a secret ingredient though.  Shhhhhh, I replace part of the shortening with bacon grease, but only if I have fresh bacon grease, ie, in the last few days or so.

Heat waffle iron well while mixing batter.

Separate 3 eggs.

Beat the 3 yolks well.

Beat in:

1 1/2 cups sweet milk

1 3/4 cups flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup soft shortening

Beat the 3 egg whites until stiff and fold in last.

This batter makes about 8 waffles.  Now you understand why I seldom made waffles; it would take me all day.

 

I need to work on the heat ratio of the waffle iron, but damn they looked and tasted good.  Thanks again McSanta, love you to Infinity and beyond, maybe all the way to Tatooine.

From the Recipe Box:

I thought everyone knew what sweet milk was.  My mom used to always make my brother and I sweet milk pancakes.  We rarely had buttermilk on hand and sweet milk is simply regular milk, but I found out today Greg had never heard of sweet milk.  What kind of education did some kids experience back then?  Sad.

and remember what Yoda said:  Do or do not, there is no try.  Big kiss, Lynn

Ebelskivers….uh, what?!?

I’ve been wanting to make ebelskivers for a very long time.  They are round, pillowy spheres of fried dough that basically melt in your mouth.  Num!  So, I rounded up my favorite Gkid, you know the one, my new ebelskiver pan and some ligonberry jam and away we went.  Pancakes are a big deal for the Norse.  We don’t say a lot of sweet stuff, but we will feed you sweet food to prove our love.  The number and type of pancakes we put out is amazing, but this one is extra special.  The beaten egg whites make this batter extra fluffy, so the pancakes are extra light.  The perfect way to say I love you.

 

 

2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

4 eggs, separated (yolks and whites)

2 cups milk

4 tablespoons melted butter, plus more for cooking

filling or toppings for the pancakes

In a bowl big enough to hold all the above ingredients with room to whisk, mix the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.  In a separate smaller bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the milk and 4 tablespoons of the melted butter.  Add this mixture into the flour mixture until blended together.  Don’t worry if the batter looks lumpy.  Using a hand held mixer, beat the egg whites on the highest speed until they become stiff but you do not want dry peaks to form, about 3 minutes.  Then fold the egg whites into the flour mixture.

Put the pan on the stove over medium heat, brush each depression with butter and heat until the butter begins bubbling.  Add 2 tablespoons of batter to each depression of the pan.  You cook until the bottoms of the round pancakes are golden brown and a little crispy.  This should take about 4 minutes.  Using a couple of wooden skewers, flip the pancakes over and cook until the other side is golden brown.  Remove the 7 ebelskivers from the pan and repeat with the remaining batter until all the batter is cooked.

You can also make stuffed ebelskivers.  Only put 1 tablespoon of batter in each depression,  then 1 teaspoon of filling like jam, fresh fruit or chocolate, and top with 1 tablespoon more batter, then cook the same way.  Are these cool or what?!

 

 

 

 

* From the Recipe Box:

What better way to tell someone you love them then by making them pancakes.

The Gkid and I used skewers, a large spoon and a fork to try turning the ebelskivers.  First of all, don’t fill them too full.  I liked the spoon best, but it’s a personal preference.  I kept a small bowl of melted butter and a brush handy to keep the depressions well lubricated between pancakes.

I served them with sour cream and lingonberry jam because that’s what Norwegians do.  The Gkid liked them with maple syrup and peanut butter.  Give them a try and let me know what you think.  They are fun and different.

and remember:  Sometimes when you meet someone you just click.  I don’t believe in love at first sight, but I sure believe in the click.  Big kiss, Lynn

Linda’s Hash Brown Casserole

I spend so much time talking about Norwegians and their love of white food, you might have forgotten I’m half Irish.  And, guess what, we love white food too.  Hello, potatoes.  This recipe combines the best of both worlds:  potatoes and white food, with cheese as a bonus.  This might be the most perfect recipe of all.

Now I would never have thought about putting a can of cream of chicken soup into a breakfast buffet dish, but it works.  The potatoes end up incredibly creamy.  The next day if there are any left, I will add sausage or diced ham, poach an egg on top and viola a new recipe.  These warm up so nicely in a fry pan on top of the stove.  The original crusty top gets all crusty again.  I would like to try it with other types of potatoes, especially if they had diced peppers in the mix.

This is another one of those 50’s and 60’s women’s magazine type ideas that have largely been forgotten.  I know everyone is watching their weight or their cholesterol, but once a year, do the big breakfast buffet.  Call all the family, have a fruit tray, maybe a Mimosa, reconnect with everyone.  You’ll be glad you did.  I call it fun with potatoes; how could this be anything but fabulous.

 

2 pounds frozen southern style hash browns

½ cup melted butter

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

½ cup chopped onion

1 can cream of chicken soup

2 cups sour cream

10 ounces grated cheddar cheese

2 cups crushed corn flakes or Ritz crackers mixed with ¼ cup melted butter

Thaw hash browns.  Combine with melted butter in a large bowl. Add everything but corn flakes.  Blend well and pour into a greased 9 x 13 inch pan.  Sprinkle with corn flake/cracker mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes covered and 30 minutes uncovered.

 

*   From the recipe box:

We are a breakfast/brunch family.  We love our potatoes.  This is the culmination of 2 dreams.  Plus, bonus, white food.  Thanks Linda

and remember:  No matter how your feel:  get up, dress up, show up and never give up.  Big kiss, Lynn