May 28, 2011

Cast Iron Pan

With all the fine cooking pans I have, my favorite one is one that is at least 100 years old.

We have a black cast iron frying pan that was once owned by my husband's great-grandfather.

And he is sure it goes back farther than him, but there is no way of tracing all of its history.

He remembers as a young child having many meals served from that pan.

And it was as smooth then as it is now after I have been using it for almost thirty years.

Other than the grill outside, there is nothing that cooks meat any tastier than that pan.

I have tried many others, but none ever measure up to old faithful.

We have never had any iron deficiencies in our diets, even during both of my pregnancies.

I am sure that pan had a lot to do with that.

When my daughter moved into her own home, she was so happy when she called to let me know she found pan like ours at the second hand store.

She loves her pan too.

So, my son now thinks it's a given that "Da's" pan will become his someday.

It will, but he will have to wait in line - I'll make sure he gets it only when I run across a smaller one that will be perfect for just two people.

But I think it is going to take a while.



May 21, 2011

Adding the Ankle Weights

You wouldn't think that adding 2 1/2 pounds per leg would be a big deal.

It certainly doesn't sound like much - my heavy winter boots have got to weigh at least that.

But when you are trying to lift those legs off the floor from a prone position, those extra five pounds are a lot.

The standing kicks and exercises are not as hard as the laying down ones.

The abs can certainly feel it too.

It's only been one day since I have used them, and I think I will put them on every other day for a couple of weeks.

Build up the muscles a bit before I slam them with everyday.



May 16, 2011

That's My Girl!

I had to laugh.

My daughter posted on her Facebook page a photo of a most delicious looking chocolate cake.

Like her Mom, she makes her goodies from scratch.

It took three and a half sticks of butter - almost a whole pound for the cake and frosting.

She couldn't get over that, but I was glad to hear it.

The shortening would have been so much cheaper for her to use.

If you are going to eat the fat, it might as well be as natural as possible.

She is listening to my preaching, and nothing pleases a Mom more.

I am proud of her!



May 14, 2011

Whoopie Pie Changes

It has been a favorite in our house for years - Whoopie Pies.

And when birthdays come around, it is usually the desired choice for a "cake".

In my never ending quest to eliminate those hydrogenated fats from our diet, these favorites also had to have a make over.

I was kind of nervous about changing them for this occasion, because I didn't want to mess them up.

But it was all for naught.

They came out so good - especially the cream filling.

Using butter instead of shortening made the cake part thinner, which made them spread out a bit more on the baking sheet.

Perhaps a bit less on the fats the next time, well see.

The filling - well that was just something else.

My recipe called for 3/4 cup of shortening, which I substituted with butter.

I ended up adding a bit more confectioner sugar and marshmallow fluff than the recipe called for.

It was rich - not as much was needed between the cakes.

But since they were thinner too the whole dessert didn't have the thickness they usually do.

My son was too pleased with them and everyone voted to keep the changes.

The butter is more expensive than the shortening, but it is so worth it in the taste department!



May 9, 2011

Dreadful Kidneystones

They have hit my husband again - those ugly kidney stones.

The first time was 11 months ago, and he passed it in a day.

This time it took two day to pass.

 And they were very painful ones at that.

85% of the time, the stones pass by themselves, and that was the case both of these times.

Avoiding them in the first place seems the obvious plan of action, but since there are no real "causes" of them, that is a hard order to fill.
But it has been found that the lack of fluid intake plays a very important part.

It is recommended to drink between 2-3 quarts of water a day to keep the kidneys working.

The fluid doesn't allow the stones to build up in size and become impassable.

It is said that most of the stones are composed of calcium-oxalate.

The oxalate compounds bond with calcium in the kidneys causing these stones to form when it mixes with the urine.

This usually happens when there is too little calcium in the bloodstream for the oxalates to bond to while they are in the gastrointestinal tract.

It seems such a delicate balance of all the chemicals in the body, and everyone's body each has it's own way of handling them.

So, we will be increasing the fluids - making sure to get what we need to keep everything working correctly for our innards.



May 5, 2011

Fiddlehead Time


 It has arrived.
Time to pick the fiddleheads.
And they came early this year.
Glad we decided to take a ride to our spot - many of them had already unfurled.
Some of them have not come up yet, and some of them were just right.
Enough were perfect so we could enjoy them tonight for dinner.
We will take another ride up at the end of the week.
A short season for sure, but definitely worth the work and effort!



May 2, 2011

Ice Cream Cone


 We haven't had a soft serve ice cream cone since last summer.
We usually go with the frozen yogurt at home in the evening at times.
But we were passing by the place that we used to take the kids for a cone when they were growing up.
And this soft-serve ice cream is non-fat.
So we looked at each other and decided to splurge.
Even though it was suppertime and we knew this was going to delay it.
But it was so delicious.
We couldn't help thinking though - we paid for the two cones the same as what we used to pay for all four of us.
Inflation takes a bite out of everything!