Lentil Soup

We’re still here.

And it’s still winter. Boo!

That’s ok, though, because I can pretend quite well. See I already started my spring garden.

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Kale, cabbage, cilantro, and basil babies!

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These cuties poked through overnight.

This yummy Lentil Soup makes winter all better too. It is my new favorite!

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Lentil Soup

  • 1 cup dried lentils
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 3 stalks celery, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, left whole
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 lb farfalle pasta(had mine without pasta)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • romano cheese(left this out)
  1. Rinse dry lentils.
  2. In large stock pot put lentils, carrots, celery, whole garlic, onion, chicken stock, water, olive oil, salt& pepper.
  3. Bring to boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  4. Cover and let cook for approximately one hour.
  5. In separate pot, boil farfalle pasta.
  6. When done, drain and add approximately one tablespoon of olive oil to keep pasta from sticking.
  7. Cover the bottom of a soup bowl with cooked pasta and then fill with cooked lentil soup.
  8. Sprinkle grated Romano cheese on top and enjoy.

Cozy up, everybody! Spring is right around the corner.

:)Vicki

Snow Days

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We got a lot of snow last week and cold, cold temperatures. We all weathered it out just fine, though, and had tons of fun being snowed in. Our animals did great too. It’s nice when you count your chickens after a snow storm, and they’re all alive and well. :) Quentin made it to work and back home just fine without any trouble at all.

Yesterday, we went out to celebrate McKenzie’s 16th birthday and had cake and ice cream at home. We watched Woodlawn last night to finish off her day.(It was our third time seeing it. We saw it twice in theaters. If you haven’t seen it; watch it; it’s really good.)

It is 47º out today and feels like a heat wave. Hopefully the snow will melt in no time.

Stay warm and safe, everybody!

:)Vicki

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Columbo weathered out the storm just fine in the carport.

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They scratched the straw out to have a place to stand. Smart chickens.

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Us being silly. Yep, I love The Princess Bride.

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Happy 16th Birthday!

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Easy Homemade Granola

I love this granola recipe. It’s great in a bowl of milk or as a topping for yogurt.

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Easy Homemade Granola

1/2 c. margarine or butter

1 c. brown sugar

1/4 c. water

1/4 tsp. salt

4 cups rolled oats

1 tsp. cinnamon

In a large saucepan, melt the margarine, sugar, and water together. Simmer 2 minutes. Take off of heat and add oatmeal, cinnamon, and salt. Stir making sure oatmeal is coated in brown sugar mixture. Put granola on a buttered cookie sheet and bake at 375º for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. Remove from oven, stir, and let cool on cookie sheet.

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Creamy Pumpkin Coffee

It was 18º when I crawled out of bed this morning. A perfect morning for something hot to get my blood flowing.

This recipe makes the best pumpkin coffee.

Madison and McKenzie had this pumpkin latte from my anti-coffee days.

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Creamy Pumpkin Coffee

Ingredients

    • 3/4 cup low-fat milk(I used whole milk)
    • 2 teaspoons brown sugar or 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    • 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree(I used pumpkin from the garden)
    • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 dashes nutmeg
    • 1 dash cinnamon
    • 1 pinch ground ginger
    • 1/2 cup hot coffee or 1/2 cup espresso(I used decaf coffee)

Directions

  1. Combine the milk, sugar, pumpkin puree, vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger in a blender on high speed, creating a frothy consistency. Pour into a saucepan and heat until just hot but not boiling.
  2. Pour hot coffee into mug and top with hot spiced milk.

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Around Our House in Pictures

It’s a chilly, wet day in our neck of the woods. I don’t mind. Cold didn’t really hit us until January 1st this year, and we’ve had sunny days in the 40’s this week that felt pretty good.

I am using the “stuck inside days” to spring clean. Who has time for cleaning when spring rolls around anyways?

Quentin and I have been doing a lot of garden dreaming. The gardening catalogs are pouring in, and it is so much fun to dive right in.

I hope you all are enjoying a cozy winter.

:)Vicki

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Trout from last summer and green beans and corn from the garden. Kind of makes me feel like a pioneer or something. :)

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Homemade waffles and cooked apples from last summer.

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I think it may be too cold to dry laundry outdoors now!

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Columbo sunning himself.

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Dishwashers?

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Dinosaur Cupcakes

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Happy 15th Birthday!

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Quentin’s fat cat, Dirt

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Keeping dry on a rainy fall day.

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A picture of my sweet baby girl for her (coming up) sweet 16 birthday.

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Easy Rice Pudding

Use up that leftover rice. Or make a whole other batch, it’s that good.

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Easy Rice Pudding

3 cups cooked rice

3 cups milk

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Combine rice, milk, sugar, and butter in saucepan. Cook over medium heat until thickened, 25-30 minutes, stirring often. Add vanilla and cinnamon.  Pour into serving dishes. Serve warm or cold.

I love it warm on cold mornings!

:)Vicki

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Venison Tips and Rice

I followed this recipe substituting deer for the beef. I used fresh parsley. Our parsley is still going strong.

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Venison Tips and Rice

Ingredients

    • 3 lbs deer steaks cut into cubes
    • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
    • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
    • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
    • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 4 cups water
    • 1/4 cup soy sauce
    • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1/3 cup water
    • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • hot cooked rice
    • 1/2 tablespoon dried parsley, for garnish

Directions

  1. In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add onion, bell pepper and garlic.
  3. Cook for about 5 minutes or until veggies are tender.
  4. Remove veggies from pan and place on a dinner plate.
  5. In a bowl, toss together venison tips and 1/3 cup flour.
  6. Add remaining 3 tablespoons of oil to the Dutch oven.
  7. Place venison tips in Dutch oven and brown on all sides and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring regularly.
  8. Add veggies back to the Dutch oven.
  9. Add 4 cups water, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, seasoned salt and pepper, stirring well.
  10. Bring to a boil.
  11. Reduce heat and cover partially.
  12. Let simmer for 1 hour.
  13. In a small bowl, combine 1/3 cup cold water and 3 tablespoons flour, mix well.
  14. Add flour mixture  cooking for 2-3 minutes or until mixture thickens.
  15. Serve over hot cooked rice.
  16. Garnish with parsley.

Guaranteed to warm you up on a cold day!

:)Vicki

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