July 16, 2007

Pickles—Part II

This is how we solve the dilemma of the smooth-top electric stove not being hot enough for canning. Joe does his canning outside, on the deck, using the camp stove. It works like a charm and doesn't heat up the kitchen! Voila!

July 14, 2007

It's Pickle Time!

Joe, the resident Italian in the family, is a canner extraordinaire. (It seems that every "good Italian" I know is a canner.) By mid-summer, Joe is usually hip-deep in pickling and canning. By August, he's at least elbow-deep. Here, the kids display the beginning of the cucumber harvest. On the agenda this afternoon: Bread & Butter Pickles (recipe courtesy of Joe's secretary, Marcia).

Bread & Butter Pickles


4 quarts Sliced, unpeeled medium cucumbers
6 medium White onions sliced -- (6 cups)
⅓ cup Pickling salt
5 cups Sugar
3 cups Cider vinegar
1 ½ tsp Turmeric
1 ½ tsp Celery Seed
2 tablespoons Mustard Seed


Combine cucumbers and onions. Add salt, cover with cracked ice, mix thoroughly. Let stand 3 hours and drain well. Combine remaining ingredients, pour over cucumber mixture and bring to a boil.

Fill hot jars to 1/2 inch from top, adjust lids. Process in boiling water bath for 5 minutes (start timing when water returns to boiling).

Makes 8 pints.

Nutrition Summary by Recipe (Excluding Unknown Items)
4029.5 Calories (67.7 Calories From Fat - 1.68 percent of total); 7.5 g Fats; 6.4 g Protein; 1019.0 g Carbohydrates; 0.0 mg Cholesterol; 4.3 g Fiber; 7.2 mg Sodium

Exported from A Cook's Books -- Recipe management for Macintosh

July 13, 2007

Spending Time With Family

Since my parents live in Kansas, I get to see them far too infrequently. We had such a nice time visiting with Mom and Dad, watching Joe and Dad ("Poppy" to the kids) show off their July 4th pyrotechnics, and generally catching up. These photos were taken the morning that Mom and Dad were checking out of their hotel to head back home. We will miss them!

July 10, 2007

Isn't this what it's all about?

Steamy summer days, outdoor fun, barefoot activities, brotherly love, splashing in water, completely fallin' for Mom's "white-washin' the fence" routine...

July 7, 2007

Mary's Anawim

I am pleased to announce that one of my favorite priests, Fr. Rick Heilman, right here in the Diocese of Madison, has begun to blog. His new blog, Mary's Anawim promises to be a great place to find authentic Catholic teaching and a bolstering of those Catholic clergy who take sometimes-unpopular positions in their fidelity to Christ's Church. Do check out Fr. Rick's blog!

July 5, 2007

Neon Jewelry

These are our two girls on the 4th of July evening, bedecked for the home-grown fireworks show orchestrated by Papa Del and Daddy. What? You say you don't recognize them? Please.

July 4, 2007

A Latin Switch?

I am seriously thinking about switching from our Memoria Press Latina Christiana program to an online Latin program offered through Lone Pine Classical School. For more information, see my discussion of the program on the 4 Real Learning boards.

Can anyone tell me whether they've used this program? It sure looks great on paper!

Summer Breakfasts

My kids beg for "fruit parfaits" for breakfast. What an easy way to start the day -- vanilla yogurt, fresh fruit of choice, and granola. Our oldest always requests wheat germ sprinkled on top as well.

Easy, healthy breakfast and smiling kids. What could be better?