Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Cookbooks I am reading

My sister Cecile sent me the book "Quick & Easy Dump Cakes and More," by Cathy Mitchell. It says on the cover "Just Dump & Bake." I have to agree, although maybe a bit too sweet for me, the dump cake I made worked out great. The problem is it was too fast and too good. I used to make one years ago with brownie mix and cherry pie filling and something else? Hope I find the recipe as that one was incredible. I will try to search for it on the internet.

The second book I am reading is "Cupcakes and Muffins" by Ann Nicol which says it includes "New Recipes." It says on the cover "Quick & Easy, Proven Recipes."

I also bought an alternative wheat flour yesterday to try in some gluten-free recipes. I need to find out if the flour advertised to substitute 1 for 1 for regular flour in recipes truly works. The only problem is how does one write a cookbook on a strict diet? Luckily, someone sent me an email that the spleen does not like "wheat" so I have a perfect excuse? Wonder if I can use this substitute flour to make our family tradition of New Year's pretzels? Wonder what the flour will taste like, can I use with yeast? Guess I have more projects and research to do ASAP.

I am glad to be here and truly hope what I write will help someone. Please, if you are lucky enough to have grandchildren, bake something homemade or semi-homemade for them. Never used your oven or your child's oven? Then it is time you try it for your grandchildren. If this sounds familiar, I am talking directly to you. Whatever you think is important, I am telling you it is NOT. Memories, what your grandchildren will remember include smells, warmth, not just your expertise or books and articles your have written. Try the pineapple angle food recipe or a dump cake, but give that child something warm and comforting from you. Love cafeterias and taking them out to eat? Great, they will love packaged food. I remember when my Mom would take a homemade hamburger and wrap it up and put it in a brown bag so it would look like "take out," and this was for a child with 30 food allergies. I remember her making homemade applesauce and putting it in a MOTTS applesauce jar so her grandson would recognize the label. As he got older, he understood that his grandmother was making everything for him from scratch, loved it, and he remembers as I heard him mention it.

If by chance, you have worked in a lab, have used an autoclave and/or other equipment, but have never used an oven, you have no excuse. Want to do something that really counts, come up with a healthier snack than you can buy in a bakery.

If you are buying everything from a bakery, you are missing the wonderful smells that one associates with home. Did you have a grandmother that baked for you? Do you remember? Why not let your grandchild have the same type of memory.

Since I do not know when I will get to Texas to see my niece as my angel cardiologist says not sure if my spleen and lungs can fly yet (guess I have work to do here on earth to make me worthy as still have a bit of devil in me that I am trying to get rid of), please make something from scratch with my great-niece. Something she will remember as her mother remembers our Mom's banana bread.

If only my anise cookies would get the dried caps on them like my mother's did. I have taken the dough to her house to dry, but it has not worked. Hers always worked, but mine have never worked and I tried every year but this one. Why did I not watch her more closely, I can not even make decent streusel -- she did it so effortlessly and it did not matter the temperature of the butter, but in a few seconds, perfect streusel, I can not make a decent streusel topping.

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