Saturday, December 24, 2011


This is a recipe from my childhood. Mom used to make these at Christmas and put a few slices on the "cookie plates" she made for neighbours and friends. Just like banana bread it is better a day later rather than immediately. However, Ralph and I couldn't wait and thought it tasted pretty good the day Kristen and I made it. Kristen made some in mini loaf pans to give away. I love its moist, chocolaty flavor.


Sift into a mixing bowl: (I don't sift)
2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 T. cocoa
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. allspice ( I have left this out if I don't have it.)
1/2 c. shortening
1 1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce ( I just used what was in the can because it wasn't very sweet anyway. In the past, I have used my home made applesauce.)
Beat 200 strokes or 2 min. with an electric mixer on low.
If desired you can stir in any of the following:
3/4 c. chopped dates
3/4 c. chopped raisins
1/3 c. diced citron
3/4 c. chopped nuts ( I don't like fruitcake so usually leave these 4 ingredients out.)

Pour into greased pans. ( 1 tube pan or two medium loaf pans) and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour for tube pan, accordingly for smaller pans. You may frost cakes with white buttercream frosting when cool.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Gingerbread Houses

This week Kistin and I made Gingerbread Houses my way which is usually the easy way. We used to make 3-D gingerbread houses at my sister, Priscilla's house the day after Thanksgiving. Besides all the preparatiion, Priscilla used to talk about using "dynamite" to get her kitchen clean afterwards.
I just make gingerbread cookies and use gingerbread house cookie cutters. I decorate with colorful mini M&Ms as well as other candies. (I love the taste of gingerbread and chocolate.) I think I have included the recipe before but your favorite rolled gingerbread cookie recipe would probably work fine. I use the recipe from the red and white Betty Crocker cookbook.
for Rolled Ginger cookies. It's not Christmas until you've eaten a frosted gingerbread cookie. Besides, it tastes a lot better than eating a whole gingerbread house.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Fried Rice

This week Kristen and I made fried rice which she said her husband was looking forward to. I think I have posted this recipe before but I will include instructions here as a refresher. I like this recipe. Besides tasting good, it is a good way to use leftovers.


In a large skillet, saute in vegetable oil, chopped (small, about 1/4" or so)onions, celery, shredded carrots and leftover meat (diced). I have used chicken, turkey, ham and bacon. I imagine other meats would work if you want to try them. When heated add cooked rice (at least two cups. There are no measurements in this recipe because it just depends on your taste and what you have available.) Add a little more oil if rice sticks to the pan. Flavor with 1-2 T. of soy sauce. Be careful not to add too much as this will make the dish too salty. (I usuually set the soy sauce on the table so individuals can add more if they want it. I have also added frozen peas and bits of scrambled egg.
This can be tailored to suit your families' circumstances and likes or dislikes.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


"God commands that we be honest in all things. When we lie, cheat or steal we open ourselves wide to Satan's influence and close ourselves to God's influence. If we want to have the Spirit to guide and comfort us, we must be honest with God, with ourselves and with other people." ... Family Home Evening resource manuel

Story: "Recently our grandson, Adam, was traveling with Sister Stone and me on a trip. About noontime we we stopped for lunch. When the waitress gave me my change, I realized that she I realized that she had charged me for only two sandwiches instead of three. I felt this was a good time to talk to Adam about honesty and so I explained what had happened.
"I said we could leave now and keep the extra change and no one would ever know the difference, or we could tell the girl that we still owed her for a sandwich. Our decision wasn't at all difficult to make when we decided that if we kept the money that didn't belong to us we would be breaking the commandment, 'Thou shalt not steal".
"Adam and I approached the girl at the counter and I explained to her that she had undercharged us. She thanked us for telling her of the mistake. We continued on our way with a good feeling, and I am sure Heavenly Father approved of what we had done." (O. Leslie Stone, "Be Honest", Friend, Jan. 1975, p. 7 )

Have a family member read this statement by Mark E. Petersen and invite each member to comment on it.
"We come to the point where faith and works meet each other. Here we ask ourselves: Do our works verify faith?...
"Honesty, truth virtue and kindness are hallmarks of true Christianity. If we lack them, we can hardly say that we follow Christ.
"Whether it be lying, or cheating or robbery or deception; whether it is in the home, in business, in sports, or in the classroom; dishonesty is completely foreign to the teachings of Jesus." (In Conference Report, Apr. 1982, pp.19-20 or Ensign, May 1982, p. 15.)

SCRIPTURES: Exodus 20:15, Ephesians 4:25, D&C 51:9, D&C 63:17, thirteenth article of faith.

ASK: What are several manifestations of dishonesty? (Lying, cheating, stealing. )
READ: Proverbs 6:16-19
DISCUSS: Many of the of the sins listed in Proverbs are associated with dishonesty. Help your family realize that dishonesty is at the root of almost every other sin and that they cannot receive the blessings of the gospel if they are dishonest.

Sugested hymns and songzs : "Shall the Youth of Zion Flter?" Hymns no. 157
"Dare to do right" Sing With Me B-81

Persons of the week: Chad and Emily's family whose family visited for Thanksgiving. They brought two beautiful poinsettias, Taylor warmed up to grandpa and I loved watching Kennedy use her strategy and thinking skills learning a new game.

Friday, December 2, 2011


This week Kristen and I made honeybutter. The recipe came from a girl in our ward called Missy Babcock. If you live in Rexburg, you have to know how to make honeybutter. It was a feature at a popular restaurant when I went to college here, when my children went to college here, and probably still is today. Anyway I am glad to have this recipe and I'm glad to pass it on. It is an easy 1-2-3 recipe.


1 cup butter (softened)
2/3 c. honey
3/4 c. powdered sugar
(we added 1/2 tsp. cinnamon but you can experiment with your own ideas. I wanted to try some strawberry jam that didn't set up.)
Mix and serve on scones (If you're in a hurry just fry some unbaked bread dough on a skillet. Even easier, use Rhodes bread dough found in the grocery store.), toast or warmed (in the microwave) rolls.