Monday, August 3, 2015

Summer Kitchen

 First, I want to pass on this tip I found when I needed to have softened butter.
(I only had cold butter)
If you need softened butter quicker than the "leave on the counter for hours" way,
Place a stick of butter between
2 pieces of wax paper
and roll it out.
That's it!
Then, just spatula it off into whatever you are using it for!
I love Google.
We baked cookies today to take to the lake tomorrow!

View of my kitchen
(as bare as it looks here)
(this is house-selling bare)
(even though our house is not selling)
It all happens in the kitchen.
I love my kitchen.

 A good friend has so generously given us a ton of cucumbers and zucchini!!
This makes me very happy!
A few favorite things I've been making with zucchini
-Cut up raw with veggie dip
-Sliced and sautéed with a little olive oil, salt and pepper,
topped with fresh parmesan cheese
-Zucchini bread
Not my picture, got it HERE
And this delicious Chocolate Lover's Zucchini Cake
I made this tonite and will frost it for dessert tomorrow night.
 Now onto cucumbers!
When I was a kid,
 We would get cucumbers from my Grandpa
and I'd slice them and put them in vinegar and water. 
Refrigerator Cucumbers in Vinegar and Water
(original from me!)
Slice many cucumbers and put into an ice cream pail
fill with about two-thirds water
and one-third vinegar.
slice an onion...any way you like, smaller might be better.
Salt and pepper.
Lots of salt and pepper.
Here's the hard part:
Refrigerate for at least an hour.
(or hide it in the garage fridge until the next day like I did)
This will stay good for days.
If they last that long!
Optional: Add more salt and pepper to your bowl of these amazing cucumbers!

Here's a recipe from a fellow homeschooler.
I used a Strawberry Vinaigrette and it was too sweet, next time
I'd probably use a more mild vinaigrette.
Chopped Romaine Lettuce
(sometimes I add regular lettuce to make it go farther)
1 cup quinoa, cooked
(after it's cooked, there will be a lot more than 1 cup--use it all!)
Sliced strawberries
slivered almonds (I made this part up)
(I think maybe sliced almonds would be better...but whatever you have is fine)
Vinaigrette dressing (fruity or whatever!)
 And we can't forget summer mud-pies
 They're always happening around here


  1. We have a bunch of zucchini right now so I will definitely need to try that chocolate cake. Looks yummy! I've been enjoying the zucchini slightly cooked with my scrambled eggs some mornings. So good and healthy too!
    Enjoy the lake day!

    1. I can't eat savory in the morning...but scrambled eggs with zucchini...and parmesan cheese, sounds amazing...maybe for a Friday meal!

      The lake day was amazing!

    2. Hey, is Cedar Lake close to you? I am planning on doing a Catholic Homeschool lake day there maybe next week!

  2. Cool idea about the butter! Who knew!!!?? I actually have soft butter out all the time. Is that bad? Enjoy the lake...tis the season for fun in the sun!

    1. I usually have butter in the cupboard too so we can bake with it when we need to, but sometimes, we run out and only have refrigerated....I have butter in the fridge an in the freezer...can never have enough butter! Ha!

  3. I could eat sauteed zucchini, yellow squash, onions and garlic every night. Yum! Wish I had a local (and free) source!

    1. I used to grow it and give away a ton, til we moved to town and now the deer are all over the place and we can't garden....well, if we had a huge fence..

  4. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum!! The butter thing....that is SO neat!

  5. Oh Jamie!!!!
    I just printed off that zucchini cake recipe!!!!
    Peyton is excited to make it!!!
    And...your kitchen? LOVE!!!!!

  6. Ugh! Your post has reminded me how miserable trying to sell a house can be. Keeping it looking "clean" and "un-lived in" when you have a large family is tough - really tough! Have you had many lookers? It took us 5 years. And while it wasn't my plan, looking back, it really was perfect. Once I let go and gave it all to God, it got easier/less stressful. I guess I don't know that you're stressed, but I was when I was where you're at.
    I always soften butter in the microwave if I don't have any out on the counter, but that wax paper trick looks cool.
    That salad looks yummy - I'll have to give it a try!
    Enjoy the remainder of your summer and may God bless your upcoming school year! :-)

    1. NO lookers in over 2 months. No one wants to move to our city because of the school district. We have the highest number of Somalians in the state...

      It will sell in God's time. We can't wait 5 years. The kids need to get on with their lives. This waiting process is what is so hard on everyone.

      I trust in God, His timing is best.
      Everything is packed in boxes in the garage and some of the kids are bored because most of their things are packed...and our Schoolroom is packed, so now that we will be here for school, I need to go open all the boxes that are marked "schoolroom" to figure out what we need to order....

      Let me know if you like the salad!
      God bless your new schoolyear also!


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