Creamed Soup

Like Ole Mother Hubbard who went to the cupboard Рinstead of getting a bone Рyou went there for a can of creamed soup. But when you got there, no soup was to be found. What do you do? You make a base (roux) for what ever kind of soup you need. If you need cream of chicken, use chicken stock or chicken broth for half the liquid and add 1/4 tsp of poultry seasoning or sage. If you need cream of tomato, use tomato juice and add a dash of basil, garlic, onion powder, etc. If you need cream of mushroom, celery or chives, saut̩ 1/4 cup of needed item in butter before adding the flour. I think you get the idea. Use your imagination!

To make 1 can of soup:

3 Tbsp butter or oil
3 Tbsp flour
1/4 tsp salt
Dash of pepper
1-1/4 c of liquid, milk or stock

Melt the butter or heat the oil in a skillet and stir in the flour. Add and stir in the salt, pepper and any other desired spices. Cook over medium heat until everything is thoroughly mixed. Stir constantly while slowly adding the liquid to prevent lumps from forming. Bring to a boil and cook until thick.

Keep your fork


Biscuits -1890 Recipe

I was paging through my grandmother’s recipe book and found this biscuit recipe she had jotted down on a scrap piece of paper and decided to share it with you.

2 c sifted flour
1 tsp salt
3 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 c shortening or oleo
1 egg beaten in 1/2 cup water or milk

Measure 2 heaping tablespoons of the flour and use for flouring board. Put remaining flour in a bowl. Make a hole in the center of flour and into this add salt and baking powder. Add shortening and pour in egg/milk mixture. Use fingertips to gradually mix flour and liquid into a soft dough. Turn onto floured board and pat gently to half-inch thickness. Cut into small size biscuits with cutter. Place on greased pan. Bake at 400 degrees until brown on bottom, around 10 minutes, then place under a preheated broiler for a minute to brown tops.

Keep your fork

Grocery Shopping With My Son

Olaf must have been about three years old when I took him grocery shopping with me one Saturday morning. He was sitting in that little seat provided for children, the one that makes two carts stick together and you have to give them one heck of a jerk to get them apart. Anyway, he had a very good view of everything and was quite busy taking advantage of it.

When we got to the checkout line, we were behind an enormously broad lady whose cart was full to the point of overflowing. After a few minutes I got very nervous when I saw how entranced and wide-eyed Olaf was with the huge lady and her overflowing shopping cart and I knew it would only be a matter of minutes before he would say something and it probably wouldn’t be polite. I didn’t dare try to get his attention on something else as I knew if I broke his trance, he might blurt out what he was thinking about her and her cart.

Just then the beeper the lady was wearing on the back of her belt began beeping. Olaf looks back at me and says, “Look Out Dad! She’s backing up!”

Keep your fork

More State Mottos

Back on 22 November 2017 I listed some suggestions for state mottos. I’ve received a request for mottos for other states. I hope you enjoys these as well.

Michigan – First Line of Defense from the Canadians

Oklahoma – Like the Musical, Only No Singing

Ohio – We Wish We Were in Michigan

North Carolina – Tobacco is a Vegetable

Indiana – 2 Billion Years Tidal Wave Free

Arkansas – Litterasy Ain’t Everything

Idaho – More Than Just Potatoes…Well, Okay, Maybe Not

Montana – Land of the Big Sky, the Unabomber, Right-Wing Crazies, and Very Little Else

South Dakota – Closer Than North Dakota

Pennsylvania – Cook With Coal

Oregon – Spotted Owl … It’s What’s for Dinner

Washington D.C. Wanna Be Mayor?

Keep your fork


Taco Shells

It must have been back in the 90’s at a state vocational conference that Otto Schmidtlap stuck me with one of those fancy taco shell making molds on a handle. The association was having a silent auction, taking written bids, on donated items. I seen Otto go up to the tables, but thought nothing of it, even though he came back with a feces eating grin on his face. Luckily no one threw a second bid on the taco shell maker and I was the lucky recipient, after forking over a $10.00 donation, of the unique item. I still haven’t figured out how to use the contraption but here’s a recipe for making taco shells.

1-1/2 c cold water
1 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg

Mix all 5 ingredients together using a hand beater and fry like pancakes. Pour a scant 1/4 cup of dough into a skillet and rotate the skillet to make a nice round ring. After placing your desired toppings (tomatoes, heated ground beef, cheese, lettuce, onions, etc.) onto the shell and wrap it up before eating. You could drape the still warm shell over a small bundt pan, bowl, etc. and let the shell cool to use as a taco shell bowl.

Keep your fork

Quick Thinking

Frenchy and I did quite a few things together the years we were both working in Iowa. One night sticks out in my mind. We were driving down the highway having a couple of beers one fall night after hunting most of the day, when flashing lights from a state trooper appeared in the rearview mirror.

Frenchy, who was driving, said, “Don’t worry! Just do exactly as I tell you and everything will work out fine. First, we’ll peel the labels off of our beer bottles and we’ll each stick one on our forehead. Now, shove all of the beer bottles under the seat! And let me do all the talking!”

Frenchy pulled over to the side of the road and the trooper walked up to the pickup. He shined his flashlight into the cabin of the pickup and looked at us.

“Have you been drinking?” he asked us.

“Oh, no, sir,” replied Frenchy.

“I noticed you were weaving back and forth across the highway. Are you sure you haven’t been drinking tonight?” asked the trooper.

“Oh, no, sir,” Frenchy replied again. “We haven’t had a thing to drink tonight.”

“Well, I’ve got to ask you,” said the trooper, “What in the world are those things on your foreheads?”

“That’s easy Officer,” Frenchy replied, “You see, we are both alcoholics, and we’re on the patch.”

Keep your fork

Cooking and Baking Safety

With the holidays approaching and much cooking/baking to be done, here are a few safety tips to keep in mind.

  • Be alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop.
  • Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
  • If you are simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
  • Keep anything that can catch fire – oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains – away from your stove top.
  • Have a “kid-free zone” of at least 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot food or hot drink is prepared or carried.

If You Have A Cooking Fire:

  • Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number after you leave.
  • If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.
  • Keep a lid nearby when you’re cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

Keep your fork (and keep safe)