Crafted Living

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Archive for the category “Recipes”


So refreshing!

So refreshing!

Every weekend in the summer, I make a very large bowl of fruit salad.  Pineapple, melon, green apples, strawberries, peaches, plums and blackberries all go into the mix.  Dressed with Strawberry Vinegar, it is delicious and refreshing.  What to do with the pineapple carcass?  Make pineappleade.  Several years ago, I came across this recipe from Martha Stewart Living and have been making it ever since.


  • Entire peel of pineapple
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 tsp. peeled ginger

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil.  Place pineapple peel, sugar, cloves and ginger in a large heatproof pitcher.  Pour boiling water into pitcher and stir to combine.  Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours.  Strain.  Transfer to refrigerator to chill.

My adjustments: I use the entire pineapple including the core, but not the base.  Before straining, I squeeze all of the juice from the rind back into the mixture.  I try to get out all of the goodness.  I cut back on the sugar and only use 1/3 cup per my husband’s request.  I also add about 10-12 cloves for more flavor.

This drink is fabulous by itself or you can make your own blends.  My husband often adds pomegranate juice or cherry cider to his concoctions.  It would make a great base for a tropical drink.  Also, we found this gadget to be the best and easiest way to cut a pineapple.  Enjoy!


Four Bean Salad

The best bean salad on the planet!

The best bean salad on the planet!

This is a classic recipe from our family archive.  We have been using this recipe for almost 50 years.  My mother received this recipe at her wedding shower.

Four Bean Salad

  • 1 can green beans
  • 1 can wax beans
  • 1 can garbanzo beans
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 2/3 c. white vinegar
  • 1/2 c. salad oil
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. granulated onion or onion powder

Rinse the garbanzo and kidney beans.  Drain the green and wax beans.  Put all of the beans in a large bowl.  Add the remaining ingredients and toss lightly.  Refrigerate overnight.  Drain before serving.  Serves 8-10.

It is delicious and the best bean salad you will ever eat.  Promise!


Purple Passion

Another purple vegetable to add to the mix.

Another purple vegetable to add to the mix.

My husband has a love affair with purple.  Purple clothes, purple potatoes, purple carrots and now purple asparagus.  He had a short list of items to purchase at the farmers market.  He surprised me with purple asparagus and I loved the idea.  I made Pesto Pasta with Purple Asparagus and Peas.  Lots of p’s in the recipe title.  To boiling salted water, I added the pasta and with three minutes remaining added the asparagus and peas.  Drained the pasta, peas and asparagus and added it back into the same pot with pesto and some of the salted pasta water.  Mixed it all together and the main dish was finished.  It was fast and quite tasty!  Definitely a keeper recipe that I created on a whim.  Sometimes, those are the best recipes.


Recipe File: Lemon Curd

It is delectable and divine!

A tangy, buttery, sweet condiment!

My father gave me another large batch of lemons so I decided it was time to finally make lemon curd.  The recipe came from the cookbook Celebrating with Julienne by Susan Campoy.  Julienne is a local neighborhood bistro known for its delectable food and charming atmosphere.

Lemon Curd

  • 1 c fresh lemon juice (about 5 lemons)
  • 1 c sugar
  • 6 extra large eggs
  • 2 tbsp. finely grated lemon zest (about 3 lemons)
  • 1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Whisk the lemon juice, sugar, eggs and lemon zest in a large stainless steel bowl to blend.  Add the butter and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.  Stir constantly until the curd thickens just enough to coat the back of a spoon lightly, about 5 minutes.  Remove the bowl from atop the saucepan and set it in a large bowl of ice water, whisking the curd until cooled and thickened.  Strain the curd into a container.  Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Lemon curd is definitely a treat for you lemon lovers.  Just the right combination of tartness and sweetness all in one bite.  Divine!


Marvelous Mandarins

Clem'n Tina's

Clem’n Tina’s

Mandarin oranges are in season and I have been purchasing them by the boxful for the last few weeks.  I couldn’t resist when I saw this box because it was meant for me.  Don’t you think?


Recipe File: Extra Crispy Fried Chicken

So crispy and tasty

So crispy and tasty

My husband wanted to have fried chicken on Super Bowl Sunday so I found this recipe on Pinterest from The Messy Baker Blog.

Extra Crispy Fried Chicken

  • 2 lbs chicken thighs/drumsticks
  • 4 c buttermilk
  • 4 c flour
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tbsp. black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp. onion powder
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp seasoned salt
  • canola or peanut oil for frying

In a large bowl, add the chicken and buttermilk. Cover and place in the refrigerator. Let soak for 4 hours or overnight.

Heat the oil to 350 degrees F. in a large, heavy bottom pot or fryer. Do not fill the pot more than half way full. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.

While the oil is heating, place the flour, salt, pepper, and seasonings in a large bowl. Whisk to combine. Take the chicken, one piece at a time, out of the buttermilk and generously coat with the flour mixture. Place 4-5 pieces of floured chicken (no more) in the heated oil. Fry in batches for 14 minutes, turning once. When the chicken is finished frying, use tongs to remove from the pot and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Sprinkle with salt. Place on a cookie sheet and keep warm in a 200 degree oven.

In honor of New Orleans hosting the Super Bowl, we added a pinch of Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning to the mix.  The skin was crispy and flavorful and the meat was juicy and tender.  It was a nice change from our healthy eating regime and a great way to celebrate the end of football season.


Recipe File: Blackberry Buckle

Scrumptious blackberry buckle

Scrumptious blackberry buckle

I am on a quest to use up my stash in the crafts arena as well as the pantry.  I had all of the ingredients on hand to make this recipe and here is how I did it:

Blackberry Buckle


  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1/4 c butter flavored shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 2 c flour
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c milk
  • 2 c frozen or fresh blackberries

Cream sugar and shortening by beating until fluffy, then beat in the egg.  Sift together flour, salt and baking powder and add to shortening mixture alternately with milk.  Blend in the blackberries and pour into a buttered and floured 10″x 6″ or 8″x 8″ baking dish.


  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 c flour
  • 1/4 c butter, softened

Mix sugar, cinnamon, flour and butter together until the mixture looks like peas and sprinkle over the top of the buckle.  Bake at 375 degrees until top is browned, about 45 minutes.

This original recipe calls for blueberries and plain shortening.  I changed it up by using the butter flavored shortening and frozen blackberries that I froze myself.  It was delightful and a nice change for the weekend.  I hope you try it.  Enjoy!


Recipe File: Ken’s Chili

Ken's Fabulous Chili

Ken’s Fabulous Chili

My husband makes the best chili.  I know I am biased, but his fans don’t lie.  Everyone that has ever tried his chili likes it and then wants the recipe.

Ken’s Chili

  • 2 packets of Lawry’s Chili Seasoning
  • 2 lbs ground turkey
  • 2 cans of dark red kidney beans
  • 1 8oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 8oz can of El Pato tomato sauce
  • 2 cups water

Follow the packet directions to make the chili.  The El Pato sauce adds a kick to the chili and it is the secret ingredient.  You can serve the chili over multi-grain pasta with grated cheese, chopped onion and sour cream.  My husband loves to eat it with tortilla chips.  The chili also freezes well.  Don’t substitute the chili seasoning with another brand.  It won’t be the same and you will be disappointed.  If you want to switch the meat, you can try bison, buffalo or ground beef.

My husband’s biggest fan is one of his colleagues.  He brings this dish to every potluck at work and his colleague gorges himself on the chili because he loves it that much.  A few years ago he started to make the dish just for him for his birthday.  Well, it is that time of year again.  Happy Birthday!


Recipe File: Brown Butter Snickerdoodles


Tasty snickerdoodles!

The last cookie recipe I wanted to share with you is for Brown Butter Snickerdoodles from Ambitious Kitchen.

Brown Butter Snickerdoodles

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon plain greek yogurt

For rolling mixture:

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  1. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and salt in a bowl and set aside. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. The butter will begin to foam. Make sure you whisk consistently during this process. After a couple of minutes, the butter will begin to brown on the bottom of the saucepan; continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to brown and give off a nutty aroma. Immediately transfer the butter to a bowl to prevent burning. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
  2. With an electric mixer, mix the butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Beat in the egg, yolk, vanilla, and yogurt until combined. Add the dry ingredients slowly and beat on low-speed just until combined.
  3. Chill your dough for 3 hours or as long as possible in the refrigerator (important!), or place in freezer for 30 minutes if you are super eager, although I cannot promise the same results if you do this. Fridge is always best! You want the dough VERY cold. If you desire a ‘puffy’ cookie, place them in the fridge overnight.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Once dough is chilled measure about 2 tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball. Meanwhile mix 1/4 cup sugar and the 2 teaspoons cinnamon in a bowl. Roll balls in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place dough balls on cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.
  5. Bake the cookies 8-11 minutes or until the edges of the cookies begin to turn golden brown. They will look a bit underdone in the middle, but will continue to cook once out of the oven. Bake longer if you like crispier cookies. Cool the cookies on the sheets at least 2 minutes. Remove the cooled cookies from the baking sheets after a few minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.

The only substitution I made was using vanilla greek yogurt because I didn’t have any plain yogurt.  These cookies are to die for and my snickerdoodle expert thought they were the best ever!  Definitely a keeper.

Happy baking!


Recipe File: Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Thanks to my husband for finding this recipe on the back of the Safeway oats carton.  Here is recipe #3 from my cookie baking stash:

Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Cookies

  • 2 sticks softened unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 c packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 c Safeway Old-Fashioned Oats cereal
  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 c golden raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat butter, brown sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time and mix thoroughly.  Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and then add oats.  Mix it together.  Put mixer on slow speed and slowly add dry mixture until thoroughly blended.  Add chocolate chips and mix together.  Then add golden raisins and mix until incorporated.  Using a small scoop, drop by the scoopful onto cookie sheet.  Bake for 10-13 minutes and rotate the baking sheets halfway through.  Cookies will be soft, but will firm up as they cool.  Makes about 45 cookies.

I love oatmeal raisin cookies and find these to be quite exceptional because of the spice mixture and unexpected surprise of the golden raisins.  My husband and I discovered long ago that recipes on the back or inside of packages usually are the best because they want you to use their product.  Kudos to my husband for discovering this recipe and being my chief cookie tester!

Happy baking!


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