Saturday, September 24, 2011

Pears, Apple Cider MIx & Molasses Cookies

So we sort of started schooling again this week.  Last week I bought 80 lbs. of pears.  (At .35/lb it seemed crazy not to!)  They were very green and hard.  Wouldn't you know that Monday morning they were perfectly ripe and wanting my attention.  I couldn't tend to them on Monday.  Hannah is part of a group at our church called, Daughters of the King.  It's part book study and part homemaking skills.  Betcha can't guess the homemaking skill that was covered...yep canning.  They made a wonderful tomato, pepper and onion sauce.  I've done a lot of canning, but never a tomato sauce.  (Can't wait to try it because it smelled divine while cooking!) Tuesday was full of art lessons and piano lessons and a trip to the grocery store, but my pears were calling me!  They would say, " You MUST pay attention to us TODAY!".  So, Tuesday night we had a date those pears and me! (Usually the kids help, but this time it was too late.) I was able to get 21 quarts of quartered pears in a light organic sugar juice canned as well as 7 quarts of pear sauce.  I still have more pear sauce in my Thatsa Bowl to be canned, but I just plum ran out of steam.  I flopped into bed about 2:45 am!  This year I used the attachment for the KitchenAid.  That's the way to go if you are going to make applesauce or pear sauce (and you have a KitchenAid).  As is tradition for these big canning projects.  We set up a little t.v. and a dvd player and pick a season of some old show to watch while cooking, peeling, coring, smashing.  This year it was Perry Mason.  I used to watch these in the days when I only had one child and she was napping in the afternoon.  I really like old, black and white, classic shows.
I found something on another blog hop( The Blessed Hearth. ) She had this cute little idea for an apple cider mix that you add to apple cider to spice it up and make it so yummy.  I'm posting it for you here. 


HOMEMADE CIDER MIX

2 T. turbinado sugar
2 T. dried cranberries
1 tsp. whole allspice
1 tsp. whole cloves
1/2 of a whole nutmeg
1/2 of a long cinnamon stick

Layer the ingredients into a small mason jar with these instructions..
Add contents to 8 cups of cider and keep on low heat for 30 minutes.



And lastly, what would an autumn day be without a fabulous cookie recipe.  These molasses cookies are my favorite cookie!  They are so yummy.

Carol's FAVORITE molasses cookies!
3/4 c. shortening (I use non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening by Spectrum) 
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. molasses
1 egg
2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt


Melt shortening in a pot on low heat.  Let cool.  To the pot, add sugar, molasses, and egg.  Beat well.  Mix together flour, baking soda, cloves, and ginger, cinnamon and salt.  Chill 1 hour. Every good cook should taste test the dough!  :-) Once it is chilled, form into 1" balls and roll in sugar.  Place on cookie sheet.  Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes.   YUM. 
Best enjoyed with a cold glass of milk or a hot cup of coffee...and there is only 1 pot to clean up. :-)


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