Monday, August 27, 2012

Apple Pie Filling in a Jar

An Affair From the Heart - Apple Pie Filling in a Jar

This year our friends, Don and Gerry had a great apple crop.

They are so sweet to share with us!

Usually when I put away apples, I just freeze them,
this year I wanted to try something different.

I wanted to can them!

So I found a recipe on, and adapted it to my liking.

I started learning to can last year, when my friend, Betsy and I canned spaghetti sauce.
I then tried my hand at a berry jam and peach ginger preserves.


We have eaten this over ice cream
(kids said it's like apple pie without crust!!) ...

...and over pancakes!

Don said he would just eat them out of the jar with a spoon!

Apple Pie Filling in a Jar

4 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup corn starch
21/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
10 cups water
2 Tablespoons Lemon juice
7 quarts peeled and slices apples

(I made mine in pint jars)

Sterilize all of your jars and lids in a canning pot, in boiling water for about 1 minute.  Put on a towel to dry and cool.  Transfer seals to a small saucepan of boiling water until ready to use.

In a large sauce pan, combine sugar, spices and water, bring to boil and simmer until it becomes thick and bubbly.  Stir frequently so it doesn't stick.  Remove from heat. Add lemon juice.

Peel and slice apples and pack into jars.

Pour syrup mixture over apples, and tap jars on the counter to let syrup fall to the bottom.  Fill jars almost to the top.

Make sure to wipe the rims of the jars with a damp cloth to remove any residue.

Place seals from boiling water on top and secure rings, don't tighten all of the way.

Place in a canning pot of boiling water, leaving space in between jars, submerged in water,  and water bath for 20 minutes.

Remove from heat and tighten the rings of the lids, turn upside down to cool on the counter, so jars seal.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

My niece had her bachelorette party last night.

She looked gorgeous,  as always.
It's hard for me to believe that she is getting married.
Spoken in the words of an "aging woman"....
"Seems like just yesterday...." she was playing with Barney, 
and skinning her knees.  

She has grown up into a positively gorgeous woman, inside and out.
I couldn't be more proud of her, or more blessed to have her not only as my niece, but one of my closest friends.

Leah and Austin

I was asked to make cupcakes for her dinner party last night.  Her color is red, so red velvet was a no-brainer.

I planned to make cream cheese frosting, until one of my 
sleepless lay-awake-and-count-things-to-do-nights.
I thought, white chocolate cream cheese would be good with red velvet.
I typed it into google and a Kraft recipe popped up right away.
It sounded just like what I had in mind, so I went for it!

White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

1 - 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
6 squares fine white chocolate, melted
1/2 stick butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar

In your mixer, Cream together butter and cream cheese.  Add vanilla.
Add melted chocolate, beat.
Gradually add powdered sugar, beating until creamy and smooth.

Friday, August 3, 2012

B.L.A.T. Chicken Chop Salad (Bacon, Lettuce, Avocado & Tomato)

Baby, it's a SCORCHER outside!!

Someday this winter when we are freezing our cabooses off, we will miss this, but today? 
Well, today, I could use a little cold front!

It's hard to heat up the kitchen, when it's 100+ outside to cook, 
and grilling? 
I don't want to stand out there for very long!
Heck, grill your chicken on the patio table! ;)

Speaking of which, did you hear about the lady that baked cookies in her car!!??

We eat a lot of salad anyway, but in the summer... we really eat a lot of salad!!
So glad my kiddos eat EVERYTHING!!

One of my other favorite things in the summer, are BLT's.
My kids were getting to the point where they were saying, "BLT's again??"

So, like a good mother, I tricked them!!

B.L.A.T. Chicken Chop Salad

BLT's in a bowl! ;)

Not only is it super yummy, it's very pretty!
Don't you think?

You can pretty much add anything you want, once you get the basics of the BLT part in there, it's just going to be an amped up BLT!!

B.L.A.T. Chicken Chop Salad

1 1/2 heads romaine lettuce, chopped
1 head iceberg lettuce, chopped
1 pound of bacon, cooked (we use turkey bacon) sliced or crumbled
5 hard boiled eggs, chopped
2-3 medium tomatoes, (or to taste) chopped
1 avocado, sliced
1 1/2-2 pounds grilled chicken breast, sliced

Note: I cheated on the chicken and didn't even grill my own, too hot!! I used the frozen grilled strips, heated them in my skillet and put them on the salad last, when we were ready to eat.  They were still a little warm.

Prepare ingredients as directed above. Layer Like this:



Serve with your dressing of choice.  We used ranch.