Sunday, March 1, 2009

Crispy Sweet Pickles

For anyone who has trouble making pickles, but loves a sweet crunchy pickle, this is your answer. Let someone else do the hard work for you by starting with store bought pickles, such as Vlasick. I add red or green food coloring to the pickles. It just makes them pretty & really nice for the holidays.

2 qt. jar of whole dill pickles, such as Vlasic
4 C. sugar
1 t. celery seed
1 t. mustard seed
1/2 C. white vinegar
red or green food coloring optional
water to cover

Drain juice off of pickles. Slice pickles into thick bite size chunks. Put pickles back in jar & pour above mixture over them. Add just enough water to cover. Refrigerate & shake jar every day to mix up pickles & liquid. Pickles will be ready in a week.

Hamburger Stew

This is a good hearty stew. The molasses gives it a really good flavor. These are approximate measurements. I just add whatever I have on hand. If you don't like peas, you can substitute a can of green beans.

1 lb. hamburger browned
2 carrots sliced
1 medium onion
2 stalks celery
1 large potato, diced
2 T. molasses
2 cans tomato soup - 2 cans of water or beef broth.

1 c. frozen corn - add last 15 minutes of cooking
1 C. frozen peas - add last 15 minutes of cooking

Mix all together & simmer on stove until vegetables are tender, or cook in crockpot.

Fried Chicken Seasoning

1 C. flour
2 t. garlic salt
1 t. pepper
1 t. paprika
1/4 t. poultry seasoning

Mix all together & roll chicken in it before frying.

Taco Seasoning

6 t. chili powder
4 1/2 t. cumin
t t. paprika
4 t. onion powder
1/4 t. cayenne (optional)

Mix all together - this is stronger than the packaged mixes. Start out w/ 2 T. for 1 serving & adjust to taste.

Steak Seasoning

I love this & use it especially when I grill chicken, fish, or burgers.

5 t. salt
4 t. pepper
2 t. garlic powder
2 t. onion powder
1 t. paprika
1/4 t. thyme
1 1/2 t. coriander

Dry Ranch Dressing Mix

This is an acceptable substitue for the powdered Ranch Dressing mix in the packets.

7 saltine crackers
2 T. garlic salt
2 T. onion powder
3/4 C. parsley flakes
1/4 C. dry minced onion
1 T. dry dillweed
2 T. garlic powder

In blender or food processor, blend crackers until powdered. Add parsley, minced onion & dillweed. Blend until all is finely mixed. Put mix in bowl & add garlic salt, onion powder, & garlic powder. Store in airtight container.

For dressing: 1 T. dry mix - 1 C. Mayo - 1 C. buttermilk

Pancake Mix

This is a really good pancake mix.

3 C. flour
2 T. baking powder
6 T. sugar
1 1/2 t. salt

Mix & store in airtight container.

To use, add 1 c. of mix, 1 egg & enough milk to thin to desired consistency.

French Onion Soup Mix

I use this all the time instead of Lipton's French Onion soup mix. It is a great substitute.

3/4 C minced onion
1/3 C beef flavored instant bouillon granules
4 t. onion powder
1/4 t. celery salt
1/4 t. sugar

5 T. = one pkg of dry onion soup mix - this makes 4 servings.

Biscuit Mix

This mix is a good Bisquick knockoff. I don't use it very often, but for some unexplainable reason, I feel like I should have this on hand!

10 C. flour
1/2 C. baking powder
1/4 c. sugar
2 t. salt
2 C. Crisco

Mix dry ingredients together & cut in Crisco w/ pastry cutter. Store in airtight container & use as you would use Bisquick.

Hot Chocolate Mix

This is the best substitute that I have found for making your own hot chocolate mix. I find that the powdered milk tastes better to us than the recipes that use powdered creamer. I especially love it made with the dark cocoa, but the milk chocolate is yummy too. If you like mocha flavors, add a pinch of coffee to your cup when making it. It couldn't be easier!

4 C. of powdered milk

2 C. of sugar

1 C. cocoa powder

pinch of salt

Mix all together & store in container. I use 2 heaping tablespoons for 1 mug. Adjust to taste.