One of my husband’s absolute favorite pie that I make is my Banana Dream Pie. Do you remember the old soda shop Banana Milkshakes or better yet the Banana Vanilla Wafer Pudding dessert from Sunday potlucks of years gone by? Well, that is exactly what this tastes like.
Baking time: 15 min | Prep. Time: 30 min | Chill Time: Over night (min 2 hours)
The Rice Family Banana Dream Pie
1 box of mini vanilla wafers
2 tsp of sugar
1 large box of banana instant pudding (Jell-o brand)
1 1/2 cups of whole chilled milk
1 8 oz. container of cool-whip topping
1 stick (1/2 cup) real butter, melted (DO NOT USE MARGARINE!)
Fresh Fruit powder (or lemon juice) to keep the bananas from browning
1 deep dish pie pan.
Preheat your oven to 325 F.
Empty 3/4 of the box of mini vanilla wafers into a food processor and pulse until the consistency of gram cracker powder.
Mix together until crumbly but in “marbles”.
Press into the pie pan, if a foil pan, fold the edges upward and press the crust evenly to the very edge.
Bake the pie crust in the oven at 325 F for 13 to 15 minutes until there is a slight golden glow to the crust. Do not over bake.
Take out of the oven and let cool.
Cut 2 bananas in thin slices and place the slices in a bag with a sprinkle of Fresh fruit or a touch of lemon juice and shake coating the banana slices. This keeps your bananas from browning fast.
Arrange your banana slices on the pie crust once the pie crust is cool.
Set your pie crust to the side.
In a large bowl add your Banana Instant Pudding and 1 1/2 cups of whole milk. Blend with a hand mixer until thick.
Add in all of the cool-whip EXCEPT for one big spoon full. Mix into your pudding mix.
Continue to mix until a thick creamy pie filling.
Spoon over pie crust and banana slices, smoothing the top.
Slice the 3rd banana and treat with Fresh Fruit/Lemon juice as you did for the pie base.
Arrange cool-whip and banana slices over the top of the pie.
With your remaining Mini Vanilla Wafers, create an edging around the edge.
Chill overnight or a minimum of 2 hours in your refrigerator, to finish firming up.
I have had requests for this yummy fruit cake several times. This is not the brick that gets passed around as the dreaded white elephant every year at the holidays. No, this is a recipe given to me by my Grandma and it is yummy!
It is also enjoyable ANY time of year! When I was little my favorite way to enjoy it was to have a slice slightly toasted and slathered with fresh butter (the real stuff). The preserves throughout really doesn’t need butter, but when you have southern family, EVERYTHING is better with butter!
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes | Prep. Time: 2 hours (You can not rush awesomeness)
3/4 c butter
2 c sugar
3 c flour
1/2 tsp allspice, ground
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 c buttermilk – REAL Honest thick creamy butter milk!
2/3 c cherry preserves — I make my own, perhaps next year I will use my cherry chipotle jam!
2/3 c apricot preserves – I make my own
2/3 c pineapple preserves – I make my own
1 c pecans, in pieces
1 tsp REAL vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 325F.
Mix Buttermilk with Baking soda and set aside.
Cream butter (or Margarine), Sugar, & eggs until light, Sift dry ingredients together and add creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk and baking soda mixture.
Fold in the remaining ingredients.
Bake in a large tube or bundt pan (You can also use the mini bundt pans for sharing sizes) for 1.5 hrs check at 1 hour at 325F. Cool in pan for 15 mins before removing.
I also sprinkle a little powder sugar or some of my lemon sugar over the top for a look of a kiss of frost.
Now the best part! ENJOY! You may not want to share this fruit cake!
Sandwich spread, spiced ham, ham loaf, Spam. It has many names. I’m sure as soon as you read “spam” you either thought “Yes!” or you may have thrown up a little. I will tell you that homemade “spam” is nothing like today’s cheap meat in a can Spam. Depending on the spices you use in making it, it can be different every time you make it as well.
You can also “can” this wonderful concoction and make it into a sandwich “spread”, but it will cook in the jar, as does any meat.
So, here we go:
1½ pounds fatty pork shoulder, cubed
¼ pound skinless pork belly, cubed
¼ pound ham, cubed
1½ teaspoons pickling salt
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon dried jalapeno powder (we like spice)
1½ teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon garlic diced
½ teaspoon dehydrated onion flake (or dehydrated ramp flakes)
½ cup ice water
To make the grinding easier, place the pork, spread out in the freezer on a tray until well chilled. Not frozen, just well chilled. You are working with RAW PORK, PLEASE USE PROPER FOOD PRECAUTIONS, KEEP YOUR MEAT SEPARATED AND AWAY FROM OTHER FOOD.
Once everything is chilled, process the pork in sections in a food processor, once each one achieves the texture you desire add to a large bowl. I like my ham a little bigger pieces then the pork and pork belly.
Now add all your meat together and mix with a mixer with the spices.
Slowly add in the ice water to the meat and spices. You want to mix this until it is emulsified well. Meat paste. (I do realize that sounds gross….)
NON CANNING METHOD:
Transfer into a greased small loaf pans; smooth top with a greased rubber spatula. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in a larger pan with 2-inch tall sides. Fill the larger pan with hot water halfway up the sides of the loaf pan. Bake in a preheated 300°F oven for 1½ hours. Let cool completely before removing from pan. Cut into thick slices and serve cold or shallow fried until crusty.
Requires a pressure caner. Make sure you understand completely how to pressure can meat before doing this method!
Prepare your WIDE MOUTH Pint Jars as you would for normal meat preserving.
Make sure your meat mixture has NOTHING FROZEN LEFT IN IT!!!! NEVER can anything that is frozen or overly cold!
Pack your meat mixture into your jars leaving 1 1/2 inch head space.
Do not add any additional moisture.
Clean the edges of your jars, place your lids and rings (tightly but not like Samson tightly)
Place in your pressure caner and FOLLOW YOUR CANER’S DIRECTIONS!
Meat MUST pressure can for 75 minutes for pints once it reaches the canning stage.
Let your caner de-pressurize, and once you remove your jars, you will need to leave sitting for at least 24 hours. Make sure they seal.
Place on your pantry shelf and you have processed spam as a quick grab.
NOTE: The canning method COOKS the meat in the jar, so it is the shape of the jar. Using the Wide Mouth jars allows you to “slide” it out of the jar and slice the spam and then fry or use as a spread, its already cooked!
It may seem like a lot of work, but the flavor is so much better than anything that is mass produced! You will never eat store bought again!
With summer arriving in full heat, so do the cucumbers. Who doesn’t love a crisp dill pickle? Not to many people make brine or “crock” pickles anymore because they not only take several weeks to make, but many people today do not understand that the “stuff” that comes to the top, is good bacteria and is needed for the fermentation process of the pickle. There are good bacteria and bad bacteria, the good is what is needed and creates a film to help ferment your pickles to perfection. Fermentation also has a “smell” to it. Not a rotten smell, but just an odor. Old fashioned crock pickles are cured by fermentation and the scum and the odor is the fermentation agent. It takes 3 weeks (or longer, I prefer about 6 weeks) in cooler temperatures to complete the process of fermentation. During that process your pickles will go from a bright green to an olive or yellow green color. Do NOT have your crock or fermentation “jar” in a warm area, it should be below 75 degrees F. We utilize our pantry which is in our basement for all fermentation’s as well as our canned and dry goods.
You can keep them in the crock with the salt brine all winter or you can preserve them by canning them. I prefer to can mine. I water bath my pickles, well if they last that long anyway.
For my pickles, I use a 1 gallon fermentation “jar” with weights. The lid has a hole in it (my husband did this in the correct sized “lid” in which the fermentation “vent” sits nicely into. You can also use an old fashioned crock with weights and a cover.
You can not make crock pickles from store bought cucumbers!!! Please read that out loud. YOU CAN NOT MAKE CROCK PICKLES FROM STORE BOUGHT CUCUMBERS!!! Why? Because store bought is coated with a wax film to keep them looking pretty longer. You must use strait from the garden fresh cucumbers. No bigger than 4 inches long and make sure they are “skinny”. Not too fat so the texture is good, you want young, bright smaller cucumbers.
You will need 5 lbs of cucumbers that have been washed and have any dirt and blossom and stems removed. Do not peel or slice.
Since I have 1 gallon fermentation jars, I make 5 lbs at a time of crock pickles. So this is the recipe for 1 gallon of fermentation dill pickles.
5 lbs of small cucumbers, washed
8 cups of water
5 fresh heads of dill (flower)
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and slightly crushed
2 dried bird chilies (this is optional)
1 tablespoon of mustard seed
1 tsp of peppercorns (optional)
1/2 cup of PICKLING salt (DO NOT USE SEA SALT, TABLE SALT OR IODIZED SALT!)
1/4 cup of white vinegar
In your crock or jar (make sure it is clean). Add a layer of 2 dill flowers, 1 chili, garlic, mustard seed, peppercorns.
Add in your cucumbers layering them as tightly as possible.
Add in your remaining dill “flowers” then a couple cucumbers to hold them down.
Heat your water, vinegar and salt until it is hot, just under a boil and the salt is dissolved.
Pour your mixture over your cucumbers and spices. There should be enough to cover your cucumbers but not completely fill your crock or jar.
Add a plate or fermentation “topping” over your pickles, then the weights on top of the covering to hold everything down well below the top of the brine.
Your cucumbers must always be below your brine, safely submerged at least 2 inches below the brine. You may have to add salt, vinegar water to your brine if evaporation happens during your process.
I add a fermentation lid and vent to mine, to cut down on the evaporation. You can also use a cloth over the top.
Now we move our crock to a cool place, I use my pantry and wait. I check on my crock about once every 3 days to make sure the brine level is up and there is nothing “funky” happening. Your pickles are ready in 3 weeks, I like to wait a little longer. You can transport them in half gallon jars with the dill brine and keep in the refrigerator or you can preserve them in pints/quarts using the water bath method for pickles.
One of my favorite jam is Strawberry Rhubarb. It just screams summer. A little on a hot buttered sour dough biscuit is heaven!
Here is my recipe for a very simple, basic Strawberry Rhubarb Jam.
4 cups of fresh rhubarb, diced. Make sure it is blushed (it has some red/pink color)
4 cups of fresh strawberries diced (remove the caps)
4 cups of sugar
1.75 ounces of low sugar pectin
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
Make sure your rhubarb is diced small, add to a large pot.
Cap and dice your strawberries, add to the same large pot.
Add in your lemon juice and heat the mixture until the fruit becomes soft.
Mix your sugar and pectin to in a bowl, then add the mixture to your fruit 1 cup at a time. Constantly mixing until all the sugar and pectin is in the fruit.
Move your heat to high, constantly stirring.
You can use a candy thermometer if you like, your key temperature is 200. But you can also just use your eyes
When it reaches a rolling boil and starts to foam, add in a quick pat of real butter (DO NOT USE FAKE BUTTER, YUCKY!!!!) The butter tones down the foam.
Keep on a high rolling boil and stir constantly for approximately 3 minutes.
Take off the heat.
Now I do a freezer test. I have a small glass cup and a metal spoon and I put a wee bit of jam on the spoon and stick it in the freezer to fast cool. Once the cup is cool, your jam should be the consistency it will be when it is “set”. I’m picky with Strawberry Rhubarb, I don’t like a hard set or even a medium set I like it to spread like warm butter. But if you want a firmer set than what you have, put back on the heat and bring to a full boil again for another 2 min. repeat test until you have received the firmness you like.
This recipe makes about 8 half-pints of jam.
Have your jars sterilized and ready to go with their lids and rings ready. (I’m assuming you’ve water bath canned before here….)
Fill your jars up to about 1/2 inch from the top with hot jam.
Wipe the lips of your jars with a wet cloth to make sure you don’t have anything on the tops where the lids need to seal.
Place your prepared lids on the jars, and sorta tightly screw on your rings.
Place in your water bath or steam canner.
Once your canner comes to a full boil, start timing at 15 minutes.
After 15 min, remove canner from heat.
CAREFULLY!!!!!!! Remove your lid and once by one remove your jars.
Place your jars on a protective covering (I use a double towel) in an area that you do not need to bother the jars for 24 hours.
When you hear the “pops” they are sealed. If you have a jar that did not seal, put it in the fridge, it will be gone quickly.
Now all there is to do is enjoy the sweet gift of summer!!!!!
Yes, you read that correctly. Beef Tongue. Beef Tongue is an excellent cut of beef, despite what you may think. It is however, very high in fat, so have sparingly. Most people have heard of Beef Tongue Sandwiches which are made from an almost “pickled” version of beef tongue and are sliced and served cold. I love these too, my best friend’s grandma used to make the absolute best Beef Tongue sandwiches.
However, my husband’s very favorite recipe is one my Grandmama taught me to make. Beef Tongue Stroganoff. When you slow cook (I use a crock-pot) beef tongue it becomes such a soft and wonderful shredded beef, only to be compared to beef cheek meat. My husband refers to it as “beef butter”.
I do hope you enjoy this recipe.
Ingredients and utensils needed:
1 Beef Tongue (washed, do not skin)
3 bay leaves
A pinch of salt
tsp of chipotle pepper flakes (you expected that by now right?)
1 lb of fresh mushrooms
1 large onion sliced in half rings
2 cups of Greek plain yogurt (or sour cream, I use yogurt to cut down on fat)
3 – 4 cloves of garlic diced
1 tbsp of cornstarch
1 large crock-pot
a thick butcher grade knife
Wash your beef tongue. I know there is probably a joke here, but we won’t go there.
Rub & coat with a pinch of salt & corn starch and place in the crock-pot. Place about 3 tablespoons of water in the crock-pot.
Sprinkle the chipotle pepper flakes over the tongue.
Put your bay leaves over the tongue.
Set the temperature to Medium and let cook all day. Yes, ALL DAY.
At the end of the day, remove from the crock pot and let cool on a cutting board.
Skin the tongue. I slice down the middle just enough to cut through the outer skin, and pull the skin back.
The tip of the tongue has it’s own “texture”. Personally its the prize for me and I keep it separate to enjoy on a piece of toast.
TAKE OUT THE BAY LEAVES. My husband ALWAYS ends up with a piece of Bay Leaf. Make sure you get all the pieces out.
Shred the meat of the tongue and place back in the crock-pot.
In a frying pan, saute your onions, garlic until the onions are “limp”.
Add in your mushrooms and saute until they are cooked but still firm.
Pour over your meat in the crock-pot.
Set the crock-pot temperature to warm.
Add in your Greek Yogurt (sour cream) and stir together with all of the other ingredients.
You should not have to add any moisture, but if you do, only add 1 tablespoon of water at a time. Remember the tongue is full of fat and should have created a nice thick broth while cooking.
Stir off and on while you prepare your noodles, rice or potatoes that you will be serving with your stroganoff.
Keep a watchful eye on your crock pot and stir often. This will prevent any clumping or “curdling” of the yogurt/sour cream.
Serve over noodles, rice or potatoes and enjoy!
I hope you enjoy this very basic recipe. It also heats up great for left overs!
Recently I was asked to share my Chocolate Cream Pie recipe. As with nearly all my pies, this one comes straight from my Grandmama’s kitchen. It’s a tad labor intensive but so worth it. Make sure you read through to make sure you have everything you need before starting. Making custard based pies requires practice & patience. Enjoy.
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup corn starch
1/3 tsp salt
2 cups whole milk scalded
2 tbsp real butter
1 tsp real vanilla
1/2 cup dark baking cocoa powder
1 baked pie shell
2 egg whites beaten stiff
1/4 cup sugar
2 drops real vanilla
Blend sugar, corn starch & salt.
Heat milk stirring in cocoa, heat until scalded.
Slowly stir in sugar mix to milk.
Using a double boiler cook and stir over boiling water until mixture thickens.
Add one third of mixture to well beaten egg yolks then stir egg yolks into custard.
Stir and cook another 2 minutes.
Remove from fire.
Add butter & vanilla.
Fold into custard evenly.
Pour into baked pie shell.
Cover with meringue & a sprinkle of cocoa powder.
Place in oven 325°F to only brown the meringue slightly. Watch closely his does not take long.
You can also top with whipped cream if you prefer.