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Squash Braid

Here's a recipe I enjoy making in the summer when the squash harvest is taking over the garden. Yum! 


1 package active dry yeast
2 tablespoons warm water
1 cup cooked yellow squash, mashed
1/3 cup warm milk
1/4 cup butter
1 egg
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3-3 1/2 cups flour


In small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. In large mixing bowl, combine cooked squash, warm milk, butter, egg, brown sugar, and salt. Mix well. Add yeast mixture and 1 1/2 cups flour. Mix well. Add remaining flour until it makes a soft dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in greased bowl and allow to rise until double, about 1 hour. Punch down. Divide into thirds. Roll each into an 18" rope. Place on greased baking sheet. Braid ropes together and pinch ends. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30-40 minutes. Combine egg wash of 1 egg and 1 Tablespoon water. Brush over braid. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Cool on wire rack. Makes 1 loaf.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Christina Miller's Peach Cream Pie


Christina Miller has always lived in the past. Her passion for history began with her grandmother’s stories of 1920s rural southern Indiana. When Christina began to write fiction, she believed God was calling her to write what she knew: history.

Bethany College of Missions graduate, pastor’s wife, and worship leader, she lives on the family’s farm with her husband of twenty-eight years and Sugar, their talking dog.

Christina's Latest Book Release: Counterfeit Courtship

Returning home, Confederate hero Colonel Graham Talbot faces his toughest battle yet—avoiding the marriage-minded young ladies in town vying for his attentions. With a stepmother and orphaned niece to support, the penniless soldier has no intention of marrying. Neither does the woman he once loved, his next-door neighbor Ellie Anderson. But Ellie has a proposal of her own: a pretend courtship to keep their unwanted admirers at bay. 


Ellie's unpredictable childhood left her determined to safeguard her independence—and her plantation. Blaming herself for driving Graham away to war, she devises a plan to help them both. But when it goes awry, Ellie will face a choice: save her beloved property…or trust in a relationship that's becoming undeniably real. Buy the book HERE. 


Christina's Peach Cream Pie

3 large peaches, cubed
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup heavy cream
½ teaspoon vanilla

Place peaches in unbaked pie shell. Mix flour and sugar; sprinkle over fruit. Add vanilla to whipping cream and pour mixture over fruit. Gently use your fingers to mix. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour. Edges should bubble.

(Any fruit is good in this pie, especially blueberries and raspberries. If using apples, shred them and decrease sugar to ½ cup, flour to 2 tablespoons. Then increase cream to 1-1/2 cups and sprinkle cinnamon over top.)

Shrimp Boil


I enjoyed my first shrimp boil at my mother-in-law's house one summer, when she dumped the scrumptious seafood right out onto a patio table lined with newspapers. It was delicious. I served this shrimp boil to my family this past summer--minus the newspaper, and we LOVED it. I hope you'll enjoy it too! Serve with Baked Hush Puppies and Sangria.

3 pounds small red potatoes
1 1/2 pounds kielbasa, sliced
4 ears of corn, husked, silked, and halved
1 cup large green olives
1/4 cup seafood seasoning (recipe below)
3 pounds large and extra-large shrimp
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley

Seafood Seasoning Mix:
1 tablespoon celery seed
1 tablespoon sea salt
2 teaspoons ground peppercorn melange (a blend of black, white, green, and pink peppercorns)
2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon pepper
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon oregano

In large stockpot, bring 5 quarts water to a boil. Add potatoes, kielbasa, and seasoning. Cover and bring to a boil. Cook for five minutes. Add corn and green olives and cook for another ten minutes. Stir in shrimp and parsley and cook for an additional 2 minutes until shrimp turn pink. Remove vegetables and meat with a strainer and place in a large serving bowl or platter. Sprinkle with additional seasoning if desired. Serves 6-8.

To make Seafood Seasoning Mix, combine all ingredients in an airtight jar and shake to mix thoroughly. Keep sealed until ready to use.

Wine Suggestion: Robert Mondavi Sauvignon Blanc
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Ranch Burger


Here's a hearty burger you're sure to love. Serve with my Oven Baked Fries. Yum!

2 pounds lean ground chuck
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 onion, sliced
6 slices smoked cheddar cheese
6 slices cooked bacon
Honey Barbecue Sauce (we like KC Masterpiece or Sweet Baby Ray's)
6 whole wheat hamburger buns, grilled

Form ground chuck into 6 large patties. Sprinkle with seasoned salt, garlic powder, and pepper. In large skillet, cook patties on medium high heat, turning after 3-4 minutes. Add onion slices to one side of pan and allow to caramelize in the juices. Turn as needed. Before serving, add slices of cheddar cheese to each patty and allow to melt. Top burger with onion, bacon, and a generous amount of barbecue sauce. Serve with bread-and-butter pickles on whole wheat buns that have been grilled. So good. Enjoy!
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Country Chuck Wagon Dinner

Living in the country with horses and cowboys, I love a good chuck wagon dinner. It doesn't need to be authentic--out in the pasture cooked over an open fire. Just throw out a red checkered tablecloth, brew up some tea (or coffee), grab your guitar, and invite your friends! Here are some menu ideas for Chuck Wagon Dinner at your house! 


Sirloin Steak or Braised Beef Brisket that's out of this world yummy (Pioneer Woman) 




Baked Hush Puppies


Here's a delightful recipe to serve with fish or seafood. Especially good with Pan Fried Tilapia or your next Shrimp Boil. 

2/3 cup yellow cornmeal
1/3 cup flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon seasoning salt
1 teaspoon dried minced onion
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup buttermilk
2 eggs, slightly beaten
4 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In large bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, sugar, parsley, baking powder, seasoning salt, minced onion, and pepper. Prepare a hole in the middle of the flour and add buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter. Mix in just till moistened. Spoon by tablespoons into a lightly greased mini muffin tins. Bake for 7-10 minutes or until golden brown. Serves 8-12.

Pineapple Zucchini Bread

Here's a great recipe for "getting rid" of some of your garden zucchini. Believe me, your family will love it! 

2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups shredded zucchini
1-8 oz. crushed pineapple (undrained)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In mixing bowl, combine sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla. Beat well. In small bowl mix together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir into egg mixture until moistened. Fold in zucchini and pineapple. Pour into two greased loaf pans. Bake for 60-65 minutes until done. Cool in pans. Makes 2 loaves.

Judith Miller's Buster Bar Ice Cream Dessert

Although born and reared in a small suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Judy moved to Kansas at the age of seventeen and has considered the sunflower state ‘home’ ever since. She currently lives in Topeka. She enjoys reading, traveling, researching history, and Bible study.

Writing Christian fiction is Judy’s second career. For many years she worked as a legal assistant in law firms and later worked in government law offices. She has retired from legal work in order to write fulltime —a vocation she considers both a ministry and a blessing.

Judy has authored or co-authored more than twenty-five books since she began writing in 1996. She is an award-winning author whose avid research and love for history are reflected in her novels, several of which have placed in the CBA and ECPA top ten lists. It is her deep desire to point readers to the love and grace of Jesus. Learn more about Judith and her books HERE. 


Judith's latest book release: The Artisan's Wife

Ainslee McKay's world is shaken when she discovers her twin sister has not only eloped with a man she barely knows but now Ainslee must fulfill their obligation at a tile works in Weston, West Virginia. Ainslee must learn the ropes and, if she can keep the tile works profitable, her brother will help her sell the business. 

When Levi Judson arrives and shows Ainslee his designs for new tiles, she's impressed by his skill and passion for the business. But he's hiding his true reason for coming to Weston. And Ainslee knows he'd be crushed to learn his plans for a long career at McKay Tile Works are in vain since she intends to sell. Can the growing feelings between them survive if the truth comes to light--or is a future together as untenable as the future of the tile works itself?

Judith's recipe for Buster Bar Ice Cream Dessert

24 Oreo cookies, crushed (in food processer)
1/3 cup melted oleo
1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream
12 oz. salted peanuts

Topping:
½ cup oleo
2 cups powdered sugar
1 ½ cups evaporated milk
2/3 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix together crushed cookies and melted oleo. Spread in a 9x13 inch pan. Freeze for 20-30 minutes. Spread ½ gallon vanilla ice cream over crust. Top with 12 oz. salted peanuts. Freeze for another 20-30 minutes. 

For topping, combine oleo, powdered sugar, evaporated milk, chocolate chips, and vanilla. Boil 8 minutes, stirring constantly. Cool COMPLETELY. Spread over ice cream. Freeze for another 30 minutes. When ready to serve, let sit out for a few minutes for ease in cutting and removing from pan. Serves 15-18.

Sweet Corn Relish

Here's a recipe to make when fresh garden corn is in season. Enjoy! 

1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon horseradish
2 cups fresh corn kernels (about 4 ears)
2 medium zucchini, diced
1/2 cup diced tomato
1/2 cup minced red onion
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
1 teaspoon dried parsley

In a small saucepan, stir together vinegar, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Stir in horseradish.

In a medium bowl, stir together corn , zucchini, tomato, red onion, and bell pepper. Pour vinegar mixture over vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley. Serves 4-6.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Mom's Homemade Ice Cream

Here's a favorite recipe served at almost every family gathering we have on the Swiler side. Creamy and sweet.

6 eggs
3 cups sugar
3 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 can evaporated milk
1 package instant French vanilla pudding

1 large Hershey's chocolate bar with almonds, chopped


In large bowl, beat eggs on medium speed for two minutes. Add sugar, extract, evaporated milk and pudding to eggs and beat an additional three minutes. Add 1/2 gallon milk and beat again. Pour mixture into a 1 1/2 gallon ice-cream freezer and add enough milk to bring to three-quarters full. Add chocolate. Mix according to freezer directions with ice and rock salt. Great for hot summer days. Enjoy!
Click here for a printable version of this recipe. 

Chickens and Roosters in my Kitchen

I've always wanted to raise chickens so we could have fresh eggs,
but my hubby won't let me, insisting that our Labrador dog or neighborhood coyotes would kill them.

So, instead, I collect ceramic ROOSTERS and hens.
I'm not sure what it is about them, but I LOVE them. 
Do you have something you collect in your kitchen? 
Share with us below! 

Red Wine Sangria


Here's a delicious and very pretty Sangria recipe to try this summer! Enjoy!

2 cups dark red cherries, halved
3 limes, sliced
2 lemons, sliced
1 bottle Zinfandel wine
1 bottle Cabernet Sauvignon wine
1/3 cup Barcardi Pineapple Fusion
1/4 cup grenadine syrup
6 cups ginger ale


In large pitcher, pour wine over cherries, limes and lemons. Stir in pineapple fusion and grenadine syrup. Allow to set for 1-2 hours. Before serving, add ginger ale and pour into ice-filled glasses. Serves 6-8.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Fourth of July Menu Ideas

Here are a few menu ideas for your Fourth of July Celebration. Enjoy! 


Start your day with Blueberry Sourdough Pancakes, Biscuits and Gravy, or Easy Cinnamon Twists


APPETIZERS:  Easy Corn Dip, Guacamole Dip