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Thursday, April 16, 2020

Great Day for Flying

Happy Birthday thoughts would have gone out to Wilbur Wright, one of the Wright brothers that shared inventing and aviation historical moment. The big deal was the first successful airplane that they built, controlled and flew on December 17, 1903.

The brothers were two of seven children that were raised by Milton Wright and Susan his wife. The family lived near Millville Indiana. Wilbur the eldest of the two brothers was born April 16 1871. His younger brother Orville would come along nearly 4 years later. Neither of the brothers graduated from highschool or married but were instead devoted to their inventions. However, Wilbur and Orville did attend school thru their highschool years.

In their 20s the brothers owned and operated a bike shop named the Wright Cycle Exchange. In the beginning they brothers would repair and sale bikes and later make their own. During the 1890s the duo would read articles about a German named Otto Lilienthal who would make dramatic glides thru the air. As they were drawn more and more into the world of aviation they began to watch birds and how they gracefully flew through the air angling their wings for balance and control. Eventually their dream would go much beyond observing.

In December 1903 Orville would pilot the first powered airplane. It was not the longest flight lasting only 12 seconds and going about 120 feet but it was in the air and it was the first time. The brothers could not keep this to their selves and wrote to governments in the United States, Britain, France and Germany informing them of the newly developed flying machine hoping to sell it. However, the plan was rejected as the potential buyers wanted more information that the brothers refused to give until a contract was sold.

The summer of 1909 Orville Wright would demonstrate the flight of the machine to the United States Army. A deal was made for $30,000 if the brothers developed a plan with passenger seats. After the flight the brothers would gain fame. The brothers would sell the patent to their company and become wealthy business owners.
 The brothers would go down in history as the fathers of modern aviation. The duo would make money selling planes to both Europe and the United States. The brothers would stay close throughout life.

In May 1912 Wilbur Wright died due to typhoid fever Orville would become president of the company and three years after his brothers passing would sell it. 

A thin rubber band
One roll of Smarties candy, or a thin Tootsie Roll, or other similar shaped candy
Two white Life Saver candies, such as peppermint
Two sticks of gum, any flavor
Markers or small stickers

To assemble the candy airplane:
  1. Push the rubber band through the holes of two Life Saver candies.
  2. Lay the two sticks of gum together on top of the Life Savers. Pull the rubber band ends up and over each side of the two sticks of gum. The gum wings should now be laying flat on top of the wheels.
  3. Pull the gum wings up and slightly away from the Life Saver wheels, to create an opening underneath for the roll of Smarties. Push the roll of Smarties under the wings, so that it lies on top of the rubber band.
  4. If desired, decorate the wings with markers, or small stickers.

Enchilada Soup

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
3 cups chicken broth
1 can enchilada sauce
1 can diced tomatoes (including juice)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (1 cup dry beans, softened and cooked)
1 cup chicken, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
2 cups corn, frozen
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Suggested toppings:
Tortilla chips
Grated cheese
Sour Cream
Chopped green onions
Sliced avocado

Crock Pot Instructions:
Saute onions until almost tender. Add garlic; saute until tender.
Combine all ingredients (except fresh cilantro) in Crock Pot on low for 4 hours.
Add cilantro.
Serve with toppings.

Stove Top Instructions:
Saute onions in stock pot until almost tender. Add garlic; saute until tender.
Add broth, enchilada sauce and tomatoes; bring to a boil.
Add beans, chicken, corn and spices; heat through.
Serve with toppings.

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Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Chicken Tacos with Corn Salsa

Taco Chicken and Corn Salsa

1 envelope (1 1/4 ounces) taco seasoning mix
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (1 1/4 pounds)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 can (11 ounces) whole kernel corn with red and green peppers, drained
1 medium avocado, pitted, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon honey

Reserve 2 teaspoons of the taco seasoning mix in medium bowl. Coat chicken with remaining taco seasoning mix. Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Cook chicken in oil 3 to 5 minutes, turning once, until brown. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook about 8 minutes, turning once, until chicken is no longer pink when centers of thickest pieces are cut. While chicken is cooking, add remaining ingredients to reserved taco seasoning mix; toss gently. Serve salsa with chicken.

Betty Crocker 2010

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Italian Syle Meatloaf === 260 calories a slice

Italian Style Meatloaf

1 1/2 pounds 92% lean ground beef
1 cup fat-free tomato-basil pasta sauce, divided
1/2 cup Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs
1/2 cup (2 ounces) preshredded fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 large egg whites
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°. Combine beef, 1/2 cup pasta sauce, and remaining ingredients except cooking spray in a large bowl. Shape beef mixture into an 8 x 4-inch loaf on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Brush remaining 1/2 cup pasta sauce over top of meat loaf. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160°. Let stand 10 minutes. Cut loaf into 12 slices.

there is only 260 calories in a serving of this great looking meatloaf

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Sugar Free Apple Pie #Recipe

Both of my grandmothers were ladies that loved their husbands, were great farmers wives and belonged to the same extension service organization. It is something that they took great pride in so when I was poking around the blogosphere today I found this awesome recipe from a home extension, not the one they belonged to but the same organization. Hope you Enjoy!!!

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No bake Cookie Ball #Recipes

PB Balls

1 c PB
5 T dry milk
1 c rice crispy cereal
4 T honey Mix Roll in balls Chill

Milk and Honey Peanut Butter Balls

1/2 cup natural unsweetened creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup honey or agave syrup
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut
1 cup malted milk powder

Mix all ingredients until they form a crumbly, sticky mass. Roll into balls. Try not to eat all at once.

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Pretzel Crusted Chicken Fingers

Pretzel-Crusted Chicken Fingers

6 ounces thin pretzel sticks
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 pounds chicken tenderloins, trimmed
Salt and pepper
6 tablespoons vegetable oil

Process the pretzel sticks in a food processor until they are finely ground, about 20 seconds. you should end up with about 1 1/2 cups of pretzel crumbs. Transfer the pretzel crumbs to a shallow dish. Spread the all-purpose flour in a second shallow dish. Beat the eggs and the Dijon mustard in a third shallow dish.

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season it well with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken pieces in the flour, shaking off any excess. Then dip the chicken pieces in the egg mixture, allowing any excess to drip off. Finally, dip the chicken pieces in the pretzel crumbs, pressing on the chicken gently in the crumbs so the crumbs adhere well.

Heat 3 tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until the oil is shimmering. Cook half of the breaded chicken tenderloins until they are golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Adjust the heat along the way if the crust seems like it is beginning to burn. Transfer the chicken fingers to a paper towel-lined plate, discard the oil, and wipe out the skillet with paper towels. Repeat the process with the remaining 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil and the remaining chicken tenderloins. Serve the chicken fingers with your favorite dipping sauces.

You want to make sure you use the thin pretzel sticks for this recipe and not the thick pretzel rods. The thin pretzels will grind easier and are not as dense and hard as the rods, giving you better crumbs for the crust. You get a really nice flavor from the pretzel crust and just a hint of the Dijon mustard along the way to give them great flavor. This is a great recipe to offer up for the kids who love chicken fingers with a different twist

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Hashbrown Casserole

Hashbrown casserole

lb frozen potatos
2 stick butter
2 can mushroom soup
2 c sour cream
2 lb shredded cheese
2 c cornflakes, crumbled
4 t butter, melted

Mix first 5 and spread in casserole. Mix the last 2 and pour over top. Bake 45 minutes at 350 degrees
Quick and easy and oooohhhh so good

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Pizza Boats

2 6-inch French rolls
3/4 cup pizza sauce
1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 cup green pepper, gently rubbed under cold running water, chopped*
1/4 cup onion, scrubbed with clean vegetable brush under running water and chopped*

Wash hands with soap and water.
Preheat oven to 475 degrees F.
Cut French rolls in half as you would to make a sandwich. Place each half on a baking sheet. Spread pizza sauce over each half.
Top each half with Mozzarella cheese, green pepper, and onion.
Bake for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.
*Add variety to your pizzas with other vegetables and toppings, such as black olives, pineapple, tomato and mushrooms.

recipe resource

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Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Awareness --- Oral, Head, Neck Cancer

Oral, head and neck cancer awareness occurs in 2020 during the week of April 13-19 The week is headed by the Head and Neck cancer alliance and is supported by the American Academy of Otolaryngology However, in some areas where cancer screenings would take place have been pushed back til a later date due to the COVID 19 scare. 

Oral, Head and Neck Cancer are normally found in the tongue, throat, and voice box. Head and neck cancer are not limited to those areas and also found in the nasal cavity, sinuses, lips, mouth, thyroid glands, salivary glands, throat or voice box. Moreover, there is an average of 550,000 new cases or oral, head and neck cancers found each year,  with around 110,000 individuals being diagnosed here in the United States. 
Sadly over 1/2 of all cases that are diagnosed will be found in later stages of the disease. 

Individuals more suspectible to this type of cancer include:
  • men who account for two times more of those that have oral, head and neck cancer than women
  • tobacco and alcohol uses are often plagued with mouth and voice box cancers The risk gains if one uses both.
  • If you smoke cigarettes your risk of head and neck cancer are ten times the chance of getting this type of cancer compared to non smoker
  • Chewing tobacco has been proved to cause mouth cancer. In fact the area where the tobacco and / or alcohol use had the most contact is where there is more of a chance for cancer. 
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV) leads to 10,000 new cases of oral, head and neck cancer annually. This particular cause may contribute to half of tonsil cancers as well as cancer at the base of the tongue. 
  • Race can play a role in Head and neck cancer. Caucasians are more likely to develop this type of cancer but African Americans are more likely to die from it. 
  • Jobs that see a lot of dust, chemicals etc... in their workforce also see an increased chance of this type of cancer. 

Signs of Cancer include: 
  1. A red or white patch in the mouth or a sore throat can be the first signs of cancers of the mouth and throat.
  2. Hoarseness or a change in the voice can be the first sign of cancer of the voice box.
  3. Signs of oral, head and neck cancer include a sore in your mouth that doesn’t heal; sore throat; lumps or patches in your mouth; trouble swallowing; changes in your voice; and/or a lump in your neck.

Head and neck cancers can be prevented. However, once cancer reaches the lymph nodes it will be more likely to spread through the body. The most common way of treating include surgery and radiation therapy which will also stop the stpread of cancer by killing or removing the cancerous cells. 

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Tomatillos What are They and an Bonus Recipe

The tomatillo is a small spherical husked tomato. Normally green in color but may be green and purple. This plant originated in Mexico and were used prior to Columbus sailing to the Americas. In fact scientist have dated a fossilized tomatillo found in the Argentina area to 52 million years BP. 

Tomatillos can be eaten raw or cooked in a grand variety of dishes. The Mayans and Aztecs would use the tomatillo in a great variety of ways. Tomatillo's offer a green color and tart flavor due to their high pectin content. 

Storing tomatillos is easy as well. Simply refrigerate the entire ripe tomatillo for about 2 weeks. Removing their husks and placing the tomatillo in a sealed plastic bag will prolong their lives even longer. In addition, you can freeze the entire or sliced tomatillo. 

The tomatillo is a great food source and can be harvested at different stages of development to gather in that sour taste. Picked early the fruit is sour with light flavor. Later in season the fruit is  seedier more like a tomato. Drying the fruit offers a sweetened enhancement that similar to dried cranberries. The tomatillo is commonly used in stews, soups, salads, stirfries, baked, cooked with meat, marmalades and even desserts.

Chicken Tomatillo Salad


  • 1 cup husked and quartered tomatillos
  • 3 tablespoons light Italian dressing
  • 1 fresh Anaheim chili, seeded and chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper


  • 2 cups chopped, cooked chicken or turkey
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
In a blender or food processor container, purée tomatillos with dressing, Anaheim chili, and ground black pepper; set aside.
Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl and toss.
Drizzle dressing over salad and toss well to coat.
Cover and chill for 20 minutes or make a day ahead to allow flavors to blend.
Serve on lettuce-lined plates or bowls.
Makes 6 servings - 1 cup per serving.

Gooseberries +++ Jam Recipe

Gooseberries are low in both calories and fat but are a great nutrient source for the body. Adding to the diet not only protein and carbs but also great source of nutrients and vitamins. In addition because gooseberries are high in fiber one can eat a great amount of them without taking in to many calories. In fact... eating berries has proved to aid in weight loss.

Other areas where berries including gooseberries are thought to help the body are:

  • help control blood sugar
  • help reduce blood pressure
  • may help to protect the brain
  • may possess anti cancer effects
  • good for the heart
Gooseberries can be digested raw after being washed. Many prefer to cut the tiny tops and bottom areas off. Gooseberries may be added to fruit salads, baked in pies, cooked into jams, However, many of the nutrients may be lost thru the cooking process. 

Gooseberry Jam

2 quarts gooseberries, stems and dried blossom ends removed (otherwise known as topped and tailed)
¾ cup water
4 cups sugar
1 tsp. butter (optional)

1. Fill a water-bath canning pot with water and bring to a boil.
2. Heat six, eight-ounce jars and warm the lids in a saucepan of simmering water.
3. Combine the gooseberries and water in a large, deep saucepan.
4. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, crushing the berries slightly with a potato masher if they do not break
down naturally.
5. Once the berries are boiling, add the sugar all at once and stir to dissolve.
6. If desired, add the butter to the pot to reduce foaming.
7. Return the jam to a boil and then turn the heat down to medium and boil until the jam is thickened, 30-45
minutes. (I used the wrinkle test to determine when my jam was done. That is, I placed several saucers in the
freezer and when I thought the jam was close to set, I added a dollop of jam to the plate and put in back in the
freezer for one minute. If the jam wrinkled when I pushed it with my finger, it was done.)
8. Ladle the jam into the warm jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace, remove any air bubbles and wipe the rims.
9. Add warm lids and rings and tighten until you feel resistance.
10. Process the jars in a boiling water bath for ten minutes. Allow to cool in the pot with the heat off for five minutes
and then remove to a clean towel placed on the count
recipe source

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Use up those Eggs --- Egg Salad #recipe

8 large hard boiled eggs
1 large dill pickle , diced small
2 teaspoons dill pickle juice
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
3 teaspoons yellow mustard
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
paprika , optional

Start with perfect hard boiled eggs that have cooled.
Peel and chop the eggs small.
Whisk together all the other ingredients in a large bowl until combined. Gently fold in the chopped eggs. Dust with some paprika, if desired.
Serve as a side or on rolls and enjoy!

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Dog Bite Prevention

I belong to the club that many other adults belong to. The name of the club is the "dog bite" club. I was bitten by a friends house as I was walking down the street. The dog was running lose and I simply was walking by at the time and the dog nipped my leg. There may have been a few things to do but to tell you the truth the dog thought he was playing but did break the skin so some could of called him violent.

If you find yourself in a position where a dog bite may be possible there are a few things you can do. First and foremost the dog belongs to the owner and it is their responsibility to ensure that he can not attack those that may just be walking past. The individual that is visiting, walking past or enjoys visiting the dog needs to understand a dog's language.

  • Aggression --- dogs who may be aggressive may appear to making their self larger than they are, their ears may be up, the fur and tail may stand on end. Watch for straight leg stance, growling, and barking An aggressive dog should be avoided. 
  • A dog that is scared may try to look smaller by shrinking to the ground, putting their tail between their legs. A scared dog may try to escape but if unable may growl, snarl or possibly bite. 

Being aware of how the dog feels may just save us from getting bit

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Cookie Mix Pecan Cookies

While many may have to much time on their hands I have little to none left. I work in the health care field and as you can imagine there is not a little down time. When I found this recipe I was actually cheering because the best part is that it begins with a cookie mix. So here goes:

15.25 oz. Betty Crocker Butter Pecan Cake Mix {1 box.}
2 eggs
1/2 cup Canola or Vegetable Oil
48 Pecan Halves {approx. 1 cup – see notes}*

Mix Cake Mix, Eggs, and oil together in medium sized mixing bowl.
Chill dough in refrigerator for 1 hour.
Line cookie sheets with Parchment Paper.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
After dough has chilled, roll into small tablespoon sized balls and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets approx. 3 inches apart.
Bake for 7 – 8 minutes, or until done.
Immediately after removing from oven, carefully place pecan in the center of each cookie, and very gently push down.
Allow to cool slightly, then transfer to cooling rack to finish cooling. ENJOY!

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Monday, April 13, 2020

Breaded Tender Loins

Here in Illinois a weeknight supper may simply consist of a sandwich and some chips. However, if you want it to be changed and dressed up a bit then try these breaded tenderloins along some some taters. 

1 Lb pork tenderloin (sliced ½ inch thick)

1 Egg (beaten)

3 Tbsp Milk

1 Sleeve saltine crackers (crushed fine)

¾ Cup All purpose flour

1 Tsp Salt

½ Tsp pepper

Oil for frying

1. Flatten pork with a meat mallet

2. Place egg and milk in a small bowl and blend well

3. Combine crackers, flour, and seasonings in another bowl

4. Dip pork in egg mixture, and then in crumb mixture until well coated

5. Heat oil in large skillet
6. Fry pork until deep golden brown on both sides

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Happy Birthday Mr. Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson, the third United States president was born on April 13, 1743. On March 21st , 1938 President Roosevelt designated Jefferson's birthday to be celebrated each April 13th. On April 11th, 2007 President George W. Bush proclaimed that Aperil 13th be known as Thomas Jefferson Day. 

This being a food blog I thought I would share with you that one of Thomas Jefferson's favorite foods was Parmesan cheese. This mac n cheese recipe I share with you as a tribute to Thomas Jefferson. 

2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp oil
3 tbsp flour
2 cups of milk (for thinning)
1 cup of cheese
⅓ of Parmesan cheese (grated)
1 pound of pasta noodles
salt and pepper to taste

Place a pot of salted water on to boil for pasta.
When water comes to boil add in pasta until just al dente.
Drain pasta from water and set aside.
To make the roux: Equal parts butter and/or oil and flour to make a roux.
Let the roux cook for 1-2 min to cook out raw flour taste. Slowly whisk in milk to avoid any lumps.
Once you have the mixture to desired thickness add in cheese.
Gently fold in pasta to the sauce and place in oven safe dish and cook at 400 degrees until golden on top and bubbly.

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Sunday, April 12, 2020

Peach Season ==== Peach Cobbler Recipe

Here in Southern Illinois there are many peach orchards to be found. April 13th helps celebrate the orchards by sharing the national day of peach crisps. So what will the peach crop be like this spring?? It is a wait to be seen type of game with the weather and mother nature at the head position. Depending on what temps are present, how much rain , etc... will depend on how many peaches as well as if they are juicy or not.

The farmers start to figure out how well the crop will do in February. The weather in Southern Illinois can be quite challenging to years with freezing temps that lat to days to warmer months. This year the weather has been rather nice while there were cold temps it was not a severe freeze. Yet, the worry is not over as farmers and orchard workers have seen years where cold temps were severe and many buds were lost due to a freeze.  What can be even worst is when severe cold temps are backed up by a fast warm up

Hopefully Mother Nature will cooperate and there will be large beautiful peaches that will go great in old fashioned peach cobbler

5 peaches , peeled, cored and sliced (about 4 cups)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
For the batter:
6 Tablespoons butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
ground cinnamon

If you are using fresh peaches
Add the sliced peaches, sugar and salt to a saucepan and stir to combine. 

Cook on medium heat for just a few minutes, until the sugar is dissolved and helps to bring out juices from the peaches. Remove from heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Slice butter into pieces and add to a 9x13 inch baking dish. Place the pan in the oven while it preheats, to allow the butter to melt. Once melted, remove the pan from the oven.

In a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Stir in the milk, just until combined. Pour the mixture into the pan, over the melted butter and smooth it into an even layer.
Spoon the peaches and juice (or canned peaches, if using) over the batter. Sprinkle cinnamon generously over the top.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 38-40 minutes. Serve warm, with a scoop of ice cream, if desired.

recipe resource here

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Happy Resurection Day

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