As usual, I don’t measure stuff when I’m cooking. I put this all together, and then wrote down the amounts I thought might be accurate. Use whatever you have on hand.
There was an issue, when it was done and served, of clarified butter puddling on the bottom.
I considered cutting the butter amount in half for the recipe; but we liked the taste (and texture) of the dish so much that I’m keeping it as-is. The butter melded into the creaminess of the sauce and potatoes eventually, as it cooled.
I used red potatoes, which hold their shape and texture well with longer cooking times.
My husband and I both had seconds of this dish, we liked it so well. I recommend against seconds, though; it’s pretty filling.
One more note: After we finished eating, I kept having flashes of nutmeg, almost in my mouth. So I think maybe a dash of nutmeg in this dish might be good.
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 90 min
2 extra large or 3 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, peeled and thinly sliced
8-10 oz fully cooked ham, cut to bite-size pieces (this was four, thick, maybe 3”x4” slabs of ham)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 stick butter
4 oz cream cheese
1 cup milk
2 T flour
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 375°.
Put the sliced potatoes, onions, and ham into a large bowl. Salt and pepper to taste; stir to combine.
In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, melt the butter and cream cheese, whisking together. (It’s a little clumpy.)
Whisk in the milk and heat to simmering.
Whisk in the flour and cook for 2 minutes. If it gets too thick, add more milk.
Whisk in the Parmesan cheese. Pour the cheese mixture over the ingredients in the bowl (potatoes, onion, and ham); stir to combine.
Pour the mixture into a greased 9×11” (or similar) baking dish. Cover with foil.
Bake at 375° for 70 minutes. Uncover, turn the oven to 325°, and continue to bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from oven, and allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.
This is a comforting, stick-to-your-ribs dinner. It’s also time-consuming, so pick a day when you really feel like cooking, and want to bless your family. You’ll want to plan ahead and make sure you have all the ingredients at-the-ready before you begin. Plan 3 to 3 ½ hours from start to finish.
This serves 3 with generous portions.
I started with frozen chicken breasts, bone-in. Because they were bone-in, I didn’t want to try to separate the meat from the bone until after they were cooked. If you have boneless chicken breasts, you can skip the first step, and just put in the raw, cut-up meat. Similarly, if you’re using left-over chicken, skip the first step.
Because my bone broth is concentrated, I used water and wine to supplement the amount of liquid. For extra nutrition, whisk a big scoop of collagen powder into the liquid.
The peas are optional. In our house, the peas only go into my bowl. 😉
Here is the complete list of ingredients. They are listed again later, separately, to show where in the recipe to add them.
Into the Instant Pot insert, put:
3 large frozen, bone-in chicken breasts
2 cups chicken bone broth
Close the lid, set to Seal, and cook 10 min at pressure. Allow 10 min natural pressure release, then release pressure and open the lid. Push Cancel.
Remove the chicken to a plate and allow to cool.
Pour out the liquid into a 2-cup measuring cup.
While the chicken is cooling, set the Instant Pot to Sauté and start in on the next set of ingredients:
4 T Butter
2 T Olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut to bite-size chunks
2 potatoes, peeled and cut to bite-size chunks
1 T minced garlic
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 tsp thyme or rosemary (or both)
Salt & pepper to taste
Add the butter and olive oil; allow butter to melt.
Add the onion and celery, and sauté only 3-4 minutes.
Add the carrots, potatoes, garlic, mushrooms, thyme/rosemary, salt, and pepper. Stir.
Separate the cooled chicken from the bones. Cut the chicken into strips or bite-size pieces. Add the chicken to the Instant Pot.
Add back all but ½ cup of the cooking liquid (keep that ½ cup broth in that cup; you’ll use it for the dumplings). Stir.
NOTE: If you don’t have at least 1 ½ cups of liquid in the pot, add water until you do.
Cook 15 minutes at pressure. Allow 10 minutes natural pressure release, then release the rest of the pressure and carefully open the lid. Push Cancel.
Next ingredient set:
½ cup water
½ cup white wine
2 Tbs softened cream cheese OR ½ cup heavy cream
Stir in the ½ cup water, ½ cup white wine, and 2 Tbs cream cheese (or heavy cream).
Set the Instant Pot to Sauté.
While the cream cheese is melting, mix the dumplings (This made 6 medium-size dumplings.):
½ cup broth from cooked chicken mixture
(If your broth isn’t very salty, you’ll want to add a bit of salt to the dough.)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ Tbs butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
In that 2-cup measuring cup with the ½ cup broth left in it: mix the dumpling dough together.
Stir the chicken mixture, making sure the cream cheese is blended in.
Drop dumpling dough by spoonfuls onto the top of the chicken mixture. DO NOT mix the dumplings into the liquid; leave them on top.
Replace the Instant Pot lid, but do not tighten or seal it. Cook, on Sauté, for 15-20 minutes. On my Pot, the Sauté function gets the mixture to a rolling boil. I let it boil for 8 minutes, then turned it off to cook the rest of the time, still with the lid on. (Alternately, you can seal the lid and cook at pressure for 10 minutes.)
Open the lid and check the thickness of the liquid. If you like, you can thicken with 2 Tbs flour:
2 Tbs flour, mixed as a slurry with water or broth
First carefully remove the dumplings to a bowl or plate and keep warm.
Stir the flour slurry into the chicken mixture and allow to boil for at least two minutes.
If you like, add the frozen peas at this point, mix in and allow to cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. Replace the dumplings on top of the chicken mixture, or serve them from the separate plate/bowl.
We got dat bad bug in our house. Not having much energy to speak of, I opted for easy and nutritious meals.
One day I threw a chicken into the oven for a couple of hours (easy enough), boiled some potatoes, and served with heated-up veggies.
A couple of days later, I chopped up one of the left-over breasts and added some back and thigh meat, and made this easy soup. Sadly, I had lost my taste and smell some days earlier, but my husband told me it was delicious, and I believe him.
Be sure to use real bone broth, (not just chicken broth) to get the gut-healing properties.
This made enough to fill my 3-qt saucepan.
Chicken (or Turkey) Vegetable Soup with Rice
3 tablespoons olive oil or butter
3 stalks celery, with leaves, diced
1 medium-large onion, diced
4 medium-large carrots, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
3 shakes dried tarragon
4 shakes dried basil
2 shakes dried rosemary
2 cups diced chicken or turkey
1-2 cups cooked brown rice
4 cups chicken or turkey bone broth
Salt (use a healthy Celtic sea salt, or Himalayan salt) and pepper to taste
In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the oil or butter. Sauté the celery, onion, and carrots until the onions are translucent. In the last 2 – 3 minutes of sautéing, stir in the garlic, tarragon, basil, and rosemary.
Add the diced chicken, rice, and the bone broth. Stir.
Do a taste test before adding the salt, since bone broth contains varying amounts of salt, depending on who made it. Add pepper to taste.
Cover and let simmer for 30 minutes – 1 hour. (I let it simmer in the oven, covered, at 325°. That way I didn’t have to stir, and it wouldn’t scorch.)
My sister, Barb, is visiting with us for a whole week. 😁 I inherited several tubsful of photos and albums from my parents when they moved. My plan has always been to sort through them, scan all the pictures and put them on thumb drives, then bring those and all the pictures to the next family reunion to distribute. They’ve sat, collecting dust for several years.
Barb has been such a blessing! Together, we’ve been sorting and organizing and scanning. (The photo is from mid-progress in our project.) There’s been a considerable amount of sleuthing involved, as we try to figure who is who in many unlabeled pictures. [Note to those who have photos: LABEL while you can, so future generations don’t have to guess.] It’s been interesting to look through photos from the early 1900’s. One album, that my grandmother created, is 100 years old, given to her for Christmas by her father in 1921.
Thank you, Barb! I could never have done this without you!
One day Barb made pancakes for dinner. (I love breakfast for dinner, don’t you?) These were not only delicious, but free of gluten and sugar! The recipe makes a small batch (3-4 pancakes, depending on size), but it doubles (or triples, I suppose) well.
The only substitution when Barb made them was rice milk for the almond. We used quick oats, but they were still organic and gluten-free.
1/2 cup gluten-free old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 medium banana
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 large egg whites (or 1 egg)
1/4 cup fat free (or low-fat) cottage cheese
1-2 tablespoons unsweetened vanilla almond milk
Fresh berries, chocolate chips, peanut butter
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until completely smooth, about 30 seconds.
Lightly coat a large nonstick skillet or griddle with butter or cooking spray and heat over medium low heat. Drop batter by 1/4 cup onto skillet. Add desired toppings such as chocolate chips or blueberries. Cook until bubbles appear on top. Flip cakes and cook until golden brown on underside.
Wipe skillet clean and repeat with more cooking spray and remaining batter. Makes 3-4 pancakes.
Any kind of cake; any kind of ice cream, softened, then re-freeze before adding the topping (cake should be cooled before adding the softened ice cream)
Lemon cake, use pineapple gelatin mixed with crushed pineapple
White cake with lemon gelatin and lemon pie mix
White cake with canned coconut milk (thick part only, save the watery part for another use) mixed with sweetened condensed milk; mix some coconut into the Cool Whip
Spice cake with vanilla pudding (mix in some cinnamon); mix cinnamon and nutmeg into the Cool Whip
Spice cake with green apple gelatin and apple pie filling (blended into smaller chunks); cream cheese frosting on top
You can do an internet search for poke cake varieties, and find dozens of ideas.
Whatever flavor mixes you choose, be sure the gelatin or pudding sets up pretty thick, so you don’t dissolve your cake into a puddle of mush.
1 yellow cake mix with additional ingredients to make and bake the cake in a 13×9” pan
1 21 oz can cherry pie filling
1 3 oz package cherry gelatin dessert
1 cup boiling water
1 tub of Cool Whip or whipped cream
Bake the cake according to package directions in a 13” x 9” pan. Cool slightly.
Use the round end of a wooden spoon to poke the cake at 1-inch intervals. I found that the cake starts sticking to the wood (and spreading cake crumbs all around) about half way through, so you might want to rinse it; I didn’t care, since it was all going to be covered up with the Cool Whip, anyway.
While the cake is cooling, pour the cherry pie filling into a 4-cup container. Use an immersion blender to blend the cherries into smaller chunks.
In a separate bowl, mix the cherry gelatin with one cup of boiling water, and stir until completely dissolved.
Pour the gelatin into the mashed cherries, and stir to combine.
Pour the cherry mixture evenly over the cake, making sure it drizzles down into the holes.
Refrigerate the cake for two hours or overnight. I put plastic wrap over mine, and the gelatin and plastic stuck together the next day. It came apart easily with a spatula, though. You may want to spray the plastic wrap with some oil before laying it over the cake, or cover with a high cover.
I cut the cake before adding the Cool Whip (although, at the potluck, the person putting out the dessert didn’t know that, and cut it again 😉); you can cut it before or after.
This hot drink is comforting and filling, besides being pretty healthy. It can be enjoyed any time of day. It is a mixture of Dandy Blend, turmeric bone broth, collagen, sucanat, and rice milk.
Dandy Blend is an easy-to-dissolve blend of roasted barley, rye, chicory root, dandelion root, and sugar beet. It is touted as a good coffee substitute, with no headache upon withdrawal. It has no caffeine, acidity, or bitterness. I enjoy the taste as-is, and it can be prepared hot or cold. It’s sold in most health food stores, and online (I buy it through vitacost.com). I first bought the smallest size available, but I liked it so much, I now buy it in the blammo-size packages.
Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein – Turmeric delivers 20 grams of protein per serving. (Bone broth is one of the healthiest nutrients you can consume. See my other posts, https://maggietiggles.wordpress.com/2021/10/08/recipe-friday-how-i-make-bone-broth/ and https://maggietiggles.wordpress.com/2019/09/27/recipe-friday-bone-broth-and-butternut-squash-soup/ for more information.) I bought it for the turmeric content: turmeric is a fabulous natural anti-inflammatory. I don’t know what made me think of adding it to my Dandy Blend, but I’m glad I did. The taste is really good. Ancient Nutrition also sells other flavors: pure, chocolate, vanilla, pumpkin spice, and salted caramel. I haven’t tried any of the other flavors in my morning mix. The turmeric blend does not contain any sweetener; most of the other blends have stevia or other natural sweetener (except the pure). If you use a sweetened blend, you will likely not need to add any sweetener to your drink.
Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen Protein delivers 20 grams of protein per 2 scoops, besides the 5 types of food source collagen. (Collagen promotes healthy hair, skin, joints and digestion.). It is mostly tasteless, but adds some richness and body. You can also get other flavors of collagen. I get both Ancient Nutrition products from store.draxe.com.
My sweetener of choice is sucanat, but use any kind you like, or none at all.
It works best if you mix the powdered ingredients together really well before adding the hot water. The protein powders tend to clump badly; but they don’t if you mix well first. I top it off with a splash of rice milk.
To make one 16 oz. cup:
1 spoon of Dandy Blend
1 scant scoop of Bone Broth Protein – Turmeric
1 scant scoop of Multi Collagen Protein
½ spoon sucanat
Measure ingredients into a 16 oz mug. Stir the ingredients together well.
Add boiling water, stir to dissolve.
Add some cream, milk, or non-dairy alternative to taste.
Because I drink this often, I make up a larger quantity at a time. Ingredient amounts can be adjusted to taste.
5 heaping spoons of Dandy Blend
5 heaping scoops of Bone Broth Protein – Turmeric
5 heaping scoops of Multi Collagen Protein
5 heaping spoons of sucanat
Add all ingredients to a 1-quart mason jar. Mix contents thoroughly.
To make a 16-oz mug:
Add two heaping spoonfuls of the mixture to the mug.
Add boiling water.
Stir to dissolve.
Add milk, cream, or non-dairy alternative to taste.
Before I get into how to make bone broth, I should divulge that you can take easier routes. Sometimes I buy bone broth. You can do your own search for your favorite type/s. I buy bone broth from Walmart as a backup. It says it’s bone broth (not chicken broth or beef broth, i.e.), and it’s organic, so I believe them. I stipulate, however, that I fortify that bone broth with collagen and gelatin (the same as I do my own bone broth, and how I do that is at the end of this post).
Another easier route is to buy powdered bone broth. Dr. Axe’s store sells several types of flavored and unflavored powdered bone broths (some may also be purchased through vitacost.com, one of my favorite sites to shop). My favorite is the turmeric bone broth. Be aware that his powders (Ancient Nutrition brand) take a lot of mixing to get all the clumps out, and it’s best to use very hot water (or whatever liquid you’re using), unless you are using a good blender. These powders can be used many ways (again, visit Dr. Axe’s site for ideas), such as baked goods, oatmeal, and drinks. My favorite is to mix Dandy Blend, turmeric bone broth, and a bit of sucanat with hot water, then add a splash of rice milk.
To make your own bone broth, you can use a large saucepan, a slow cooker, or a pressure cooker. I use an Instant Pot.
If you use the slow cooker or the saucepan, you will need to simmer the bone broth for 2 or 3 days (36 hours is prime), adding water as needed to keep the pot full.
In an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker, 5 hours will do it. When I use my Instant Pot, I plan on the whole day to make bone broth: from prep, to cooking, to pressure release, to draining and cooling, to cooling in the jars, to clean up and refrigeration. I bought a strainer insert for my Instant Pot, and it saves the time and hassle of straining hot broth from the bones and veggies at the end.
Bones (can use chicken, beef, pork, or fish, or any combination) In my Instant Pot, the bones of one small chicken is just enough for one batch. Or, three or four T-bones. If you’re using raw soup bones, it’s a good idea (for the sake of flavor) to roast the bones first. If you have stuff like chicken’s feet and necks, those are good.
Veggies: when I chop onions, celery, and carrots for recipes, I keep the ends in a freezer bag. I use some or all of these ends. You can just chop up any vegetables you like, too. Garlic is a good addition.
Organic apple cider vinegar (this helps draw the nutrients from the bones; the vinegar taste does not come through to the finished bone broth, unless you add too much)
Natural sea salt or Himalayan salt (PLEASE, do not use grocery store, white table salt. It is pure sodium chloride and is bad for you. Natural mineral salts, on the other hand, contain minerals that are salty, and they’re not all sodium: there are magnesium salts, for example, among others. Even if you’re buying labeled “natural” salts, read the label to see what’s in it, and make sure it’s not a bunch of chemicals.)
If you have one, put a strainer in the Instant Pot insert. Dump your bones and veggies into the strainer. (Yep, they’re still frozen, and that’s okay. Break them apart if you need to, to fit in correctly.)
Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of good salt
Pour 2 tablespoons of organic vinegar into a pitcher of water. (I just do this to get the vinegar mixed in well. You can add the vinegar and water separately, if you like.) Add it to the pot.
Add more water as needed to the fill line.
Put the cover on the pot and make sure it’s properly locked. Turn the vent to Seal.
Use the Soup function, if you have it. The highest number for time is 4 hours. I cook mine for 5 hours, but I set it at 4 for now.
The pot will start heating and cooking. Once it comes to pressure, the timer will start the countdown.
Somewhere in the middle of the countdown, but after at least one hour is up, I add an extra hour.
After the cooking time is up, let the pressure release naturally. Wait for the pressure pin to drop. This will take 30 – 60 minutes.
After the pressure has released and the pin has dropped, carefully take off the lid.
Use pot holders to take the full insert out of the pot.
Use the handle to lift the strainer full of bones and veggies out of the broth. Put a cooling rack on top of the insert, and rest the strainer on top of the cooling rack. Let the strainer drain and cool.
When the broth has strained out of the bones and veggies, remove the strainer. You can compost the bones and veggies, or throw them away.
Make sure the broth is cool enough before you pour it into jars.
Wait until they’ve cooled enough; then screw lids on (I use plastic lids, but the metal bands and lids are fine) and refrigerate.
To prepare bone broth as a hot drink:
I heat enough bone broth each morning for two people. Yes, you can just heat and drink, but I like to stretch mine with amendments. When heating, please use a stove and not a microwave; microwaves destroy some of the vital nutrients.
1 cup bone broth
2 tablespoons powdered gelatin
2 scoops collagen powder
1 ½ cups filtered water
Natural salt, to taste
Pour about 1 cup of bone broth into a small saucepan.
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of powdered gelatin over the top.
Sprinkle 2 scoops of collagen over the top.
Add some healthy salt. Start with a few shakes. You will need to taste your bone broth before you pour it into your cup, to see how much salt you’ll need to add when you prepare this batch of bone broth.
Turn the burner to high. After a minute or two, start whisking the mixture. Don’t wait too long, as the gelatin will sink to the bottom and stick.
Heat and whisk until all the lumps are out. The mixture will be fairly hot by this time.
Add 1 ½ cups of filtered water. Stir and heat until hot enough for you to drink.
Use a spoon to take a taste, and add salt if needed. Stir well.
Pour into two mugs. Your bone broth is ready to enjoy.
You needn’t worry about consuming too much salt, if it’s the healthy kind, and used in moderation. I used to drink salt sole (pronounced “so-lay”) every morning, but now I get my salt via bone broth. Salt sole is simply a saturated mixture of salt (REAL salt, not table, store-bought salt) and water (FILTERED water). Why is it so healthy? Because Himalayan salt or Celtic salt is naturally occurring, and provides a multitude of essential minerals our bodies need to function properly. And, the minerals are delivered in a way that our bodies can assimilate and use. Please see my post on Salt Sole here: https://maggietiggles.wordpress.com/2019/12/27/recipe-friday-salt-sole/
It is cranberry and apple season! The cool blustery winds are coming in, the leaves are turning, and fall is in the air.
Cran-Apple Crumble is a seasonal dessert just right for potlucks, or for nibbling in the house. Have it with some coffee any time.
The flours and sweeteners mentioned are the healthy version; however, you can use white sugar, white flour, and brown sugar in this recipe.
As with many recipes, the amounts listed are suggestions: you can go crazy with cranberries, apples, oats, and sweeteners as you like. Customize this as you will; I like to add a bunch of cinnamon and nutmeg. 🤤
3 cups peeled and chopped tart apples
2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
¾ cup sucanat, coconut palm sugar, honey, or maple syrup
3 tablespoons whole grain oat, barley, or wheat flour
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup whole grain oat, barley, or wheat flour
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
In a medium-large bowl, combine apples, cranberries, sweetener, and flour. Pour into a greased 11×7-in. baking dish.
In a bowl, mix topping ingredients until crumbly; sprinkle over apple mixture. Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until fruit is tender.
In trying to think of something different for breakfast, I came up with this. My normal breakfast is a smoothie and a biscuit with peanut butter and honey. Like, every. single. morning. I love the nutrition I get from my breakfast, and the way it fills me up just right. But I suddenly got bored.
I had some raw milk that I wanted to use up before it went bad; some yogurt sounded like a good idea; I should add some protein powder; I should have some fruit; and, as an afterthought, I threw in some of my super-greens powder (that taste didn’t come through).
I didn’t want to wash my blender bowl, either. So, I used my immersion blender. It worked well except for the parsley flakes I added to the super-greens powder – I had to chew on those just a bit.
I enjoyed the taste of this; and it could be for any time.
I don’t list amounts for any of the ingredients because I rarely measure, and everything depends on how many people will be consuming it. I have a scoop that came with my bone broth protein powder, and I added one scoop of that. The bone broth protein powder that I use, it should be mentioned, is sweetened, but it’s with monkfruit, which is a healthy, no-calorie sweetener (like stevia). So, if your protein powder is not sweetened, you may need to add something to make it palatable (it’s hard for me to eat plain yogurt 😝). Suggestions: raw honey, real maple syrup, date syrup.
If you drink this right away, the frozen fruit makes it thick and icy, like a milkshake. But I couldn’t finish the whole thing, and stored it in the ‘fridge until later; and it was still very good.
I used dark sweet cherries and chocolate protein powder, but I think other combinations would also be delicious, like vanilla bone broth powder with frozen peaches or berries.
Organic, plain, whole-milk yogurt
Chocolate protein powder
Super greens powder
Frozen dark sweet cherries
Add all ingredients to a deep cup or blender. Use an immersion blender or high-speed blender, and blend on high until all is dissolved and mixed completely. Enjoy.