Home, Home and My Range

Home, Home and My Range
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Packed our Bags...headed over to another site. Folks were having a hard time catching up with us here.
Oh good...Carson is on his way!

We have plenty of room there...come on by...we'll have tea! To get there...follow Carson in his fancy car (I may need one of those some day)...or....click the following link...

Tea...and cookies!

I have a great Oatmeal Bar recipe that I will share with you over there!
See you there!

Wishing you...whatever your cup of tea might be....
and cookies to go with it!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

An Irish Dinner...Irish Coddle and Soda Bread

What we had for St. Patrick's Day yummins...
I couldn't get this posted in time to share for lucky green day. We had a big lightning storm that knocked out our internet. OK...tornadoes, lightning....maybe Arizona hot sun wasn't so bad?

This is a classic Irish dish and although a great dish for St. Patrick's Day...it should be enjoyed...anytime...often. It is a simple recipe, very hearty and flavorful.

Irish Coddle...so easy.  Great for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner...and with this big batch...all three!


Irish Coddle Ingredients

16 oz. thick-sliced bacon
12 - 16 oz. pork sausage links 
2 large onions, sliced
4 large potatoes, thinly sliced
1/3 c. chopped fresh parsley
pepper (and salt if you wish), to taste
2 c. chicken broth

How I make it...
Cook bacon. I cut the slices in half. It fits in the pan better and cooks more evenly. You could cut into smaller pieces for this dish...but I left mine in halves.

Browning the Bacon
 Place bacon on paper towels to drain....start cooking the sausage in a small amount of the drippings.
Browning the Sausage Links
The sausage can be cut into smaller pieces also...but I leave mine in whole links. When the sausage links are nicely browned...place on paper towels to drain. Reserve about a tablespoon of fat drippings. Add chicken stock to the drippings and heat.  This will be poured over the layers.

note: Some recipes call for just water but I prefer the chicken stock.

Peel and slice potatoes...thin slices.
Peel and slice the onions.
Chop the fresh parsley...chop lightly.

For the layers....
Into a 3 quart baking dish (9x13)...layer the bacon, sausage, potatoes,and onions. Sprinkle with pepper, to taste, as you go (also salt if you like...but I find the dish to be salty enough from the bacon), and sprinkle each layer with the fresh, chopped parsley.

Ready for The Oven
Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about an hour. When potatoes are tender...uncover and bake a little longer until lightly browned...about 30 minutes.

add some Irish Soda Bread (recipe to follow), a nice salad...and enjoy! The flavor is amazing!

Irish Coddle...Dinner Version.

Irish Soda Bread...a hearty, homey bread, a bit like cornbread. Buttermilk gives this bread a very distinctive flavor...very good! Simple to make...even if you aren't a bread baker.
Irish Soda Bread

4 cups all-purpose flour           1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
4 tablespoons white sugar        1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda            1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt

To brush the top of bread while it bakes...1/4 cup melted butter and 1/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl (I use my Kitchen Aid Mixer) mix flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. With a fork or pastry blender...blend in the softened butter or margarine until you have coarse crumbles Mix egg into buttermilk and add this mixture to the dry ingredients.

Adding Buttermilk and Egg to Dry Ingredients
 Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead...or change to kneading hook on mixer...and knead slightly.
Then form into a round loaf and place on lightly greased baking sheet or pan.

Kneaded, Shaped Loaf

Ready for The Oven

Brush the mixture of melted butter or margarine and buttermilk over dough. Continue brushing this mixture over the bread as it bakes. Cut  an  'X'  into the top.

Bake at 375 degrees for 45 - 50 minute...or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Note: Because this is a very dense bread...I may divide the dough in half and shape into french bread style loaves next time (hey...you can be part Irish and French too). It may take less time to bake and it will make smaller serving slices.  I'll keep you posted :O) on that version.

Voila! Ok...that's French!

Delicious IRISH Soda Bread!

Ready to Enjoy

Cool slightly....slice and serve warm...with your Irish Coddle!

This bread is best served warm...but still yummy the next day...and the next!

I hope you'll try it.

Wishing you...all the comforts of Home and The Range...good food and good times with those that you love.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Craving Grandma's Pudding

I am a child of the 50's and I love homestyle cooking. I have been craving, for many years, my Grandmother's pudding. I believe it was popular back in the 50's and may have disappeared from homestyle cooking today.

Last Thanksgiving there was conversation (again) about this pudding. My Mother has tried to locate the recipe within the recipe files that were Grandma's...no luck yet. I wish I had gotten the recipe from Grandma before she passed on, but, regretfully, didn't do that. While my Parents and I were discussing this pudding...I mentioned the pears at the bottom. When I added that little note about the pudding Dad said he remembered that as well. We all pondered what and where the recipe was and fondly remembered Grandma's pudding.
Ahhh....memories. Ahhh....that was good pudding!  And funny that I remember such detail about the pudding...texture, taste, pears, white layer on the top, graham crackers...oh so good!

Recently...right smack dab in the middle of enjoying a pudding cup...the craving hit me...and I scurried to the internet! My online search pulled up a few recipes and I found what I believe to be Grandma's pudding! There were no recipes with pears but everything else seemed to be probable. So...I think the pears were Grandma's idea...good idea! They add a nice texture and delicate flavor to balance the sweetness.

I was so excited to find this recipe. I mean...EXCITED! Called Mom...Mom got EXCITED! She said...'thank you honey'!

I couldn't wait to try it! Hurried to the store...then back to 'The Range'! In my 'test kitchen' my husband tested the recipe.  He loved it! My first taste....oh yes....this is it! It took me back to Grandma's kitchen, Grandma's laughter, her smile and how she enjoyed my delight over that creamy, scrumptious concoction she made for me.

A couple of weeks later we had some of my Husband's family over for dinner. Without telling them the story...served Grandma's pudding for dessert. All agree...this pudding is 'oh my goodness...so delish'! Then we told them all about Grandma's pudding. As always... the proof is in the pudding!

Here is what I believe to be...

                Grandma's Graham Cracker Pudding

OSD (Oh So Delish)!

What you will need:

1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar
18 graham crackers, crushed (for the crust)
6 graham crackers, crushed (for the topping)
4 cups whole milk
a pinch of salt
3 egg yolks, beaten
1 tablespoon (yes...tablespoon) vanilla
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon confectioner's sugar

one large can sliced pears

Simple Ingredients
(Graham crackers and pears did not show up for the photo shoot.)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
 Crush the graham crackers for the crust (18).
Crush the graham crackers for the topping (6)...set aside.

Graham Crackers, Melted Butter & Brown Sugar
How I crush graham crackers...place in a large zip lock bag, ease the air out of the bag and close, use rolling pin to crush the crackers, roll back and forth until you have fine crumbs.

In a medium bowl, mix melted butter, brown sugar and crushed graham crackers for the crust. Press mixture, lightly, into the bottom of a 9 x 13 glass baking dish.

Graham Cracker Crust
For the Pudding...

Separate eggs, beat egg yolks and reserve egg whites for topping.

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, mix milk, salt, beaten egg yolks, vanilla, white sugar and cornstarch. Stirring constantly, cook until thickened (10 minutes or a bit longer). When pudding has thickened pour evenly over crust. (Oops...no picture...but you'll know what to do).

Stir with Wooden Spoon or Wire Whisk

Now for the topping...

In a medium bowl...beat egg whites until soft peaks form, then add confectioner's sugar and mix in.
Beaten Egg Whites... Soft Peaks
Spread the beaten egg whites, evenly, over the top of the pudding.
Beaten Egg Whites... evenly spread over Pudding

Spread the reserved crushed graham crackers, evenly, over the top.

Crushed Graham Crackers... evenly spread over Egg White Topping
 Bake at 400 degrees F...for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

Cool, refrigerate...overnight is best.

Grandma would be so proud!


I hope you will try this recipe. Or...perhaps you are inspired to whip up one of your Grandmother's favorite recipes...maybe just remember Grandma. If you have a favorite childhood memory...please share!

Wishing you...
Moments to remember...
From Home...and The Range!