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gingerbread men

this is one of my all time favorite cookie recipes and it has great story to go with it! ok, i think so, anyway.

i love collecting recipes…obviously.  and i found myself with mountains of magazines to keep all the recipes i loved.  one year, i decided to purge the magazines by pulling out the recipes i loved and had saved the magazine for.  i got one of those ‘magnetic’ photo albums and put all my scraps of papers in the album. i still have this album and it has to be 20 years old.

but.  somehow, this recipe got lost.  i had written it down several times.  it was in a good housekeeping magazine from 1983.  i remembered the front of the magazine, and had saved it for many years, but it was gone.  i had even given it to friends and no one could find it.

what i love about this recipe, is that the cookies are soft….if you roll them thinner, they would be crunchy, but the flavor is mild….i think it has to do with the maple syrup in it…and i use the real thing.  they are easy to handle and roll out and transfer to a cookie sheet….just all around good cookie dough to work with.

well.  every Christmas, i think of these cookies and have not, for the life of me, been able to replicate the recipe.

i have been looking for probably 10 years now.  and decided to go online to find it.  i didn’t know this, but there is a magazine clearing house….so, i went on that and ordered the magazine…for a mere 19.95.  it came in and i got the year wrong…..it wasn’t the right one. BOOOOOOO.  NOW what what i going to do?????  well, I called the company and explained what I did….hehe….the guy felt sorry for me and copied and emailed me the copy of the recipe from the correct years’ magazine.

so…now i have it and i knew if I didn’t make these and get the recipe on my blog, i might lose it again!!!  here it is:)

gingerbread cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 c flour

mix butter, sugar, syrup and egg until smooth.  mix dry ingredients together and add to butter mixture.  mix well. put on floured board and roll out to desired thickness.  add currants for eyes and buttons, or leave plain and decorate after cooled.   bake at 350 for 5-8 minutes.

[…] given it to friends and no one could find it. to see the rest of the story, click on this link: http://www.aramblinrose.net/2011/11/gingerbread-men/ Share this:FacebookMoreTwitterPinterestLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. Posted on […]

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iii forks corn

once we had been to iii forks, we were on the hunt for their recipes…or at least trying to copy them.  a friend had overheard us talking about how much we loved it….and how we had broken the salad recipe, which you can find here and she gave us a copy of the creamed corn they serve.  wow.  jackpot!  we decided to make it for a holiday meal, and it has been a regular ever since.  i rarely make it outside of the holidays, but my kids–the ones out on their own–will call me to get the recipe every now and then.  it is so good!  it does taste better with fresh, off the cob corn, but during the holidays, fresh corn is hard to come by and pricey…so we use frozen.  I do try to find the best brand of frozen, which is usually birds eye or green giant.  this is one recipe i don’t go for store brands.

III Forks Corn

  • 10 ears fresh corn (we use frozen most of the time)
  • 1 C. heavy cream
  • 1 C. milk
  • 2 T. Sugar
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. white pepper
  • 1/2 t. black pepper
  • 1/4 t. accent (I have NEVER used)
  • 1/2 t. garlic powder
  • 1/2 t. thyme
  • 4 oz butter
  • 2 T. flour

In a stock pot, combine first 10 ingredients. Slowly bring to a boil. (if
using frozen corn, I cook part way). Reduce to a simmer. Simmer 3 minutes.

In a separate sauce pan, bring the butter to a boil. Stir in flour. Ad
this mixture to the simmering corn.

Stirring occasionally, simmer for 3 more minutes. Keep warm until serving.

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sweet potato casserole

i had never heard of sweet potato casserole until i met my ex husband’s family.  we had just started dating and went over to have some thanksgiving dinner with them.  it was the first ‘real’ thanksgiving that i felt was like home to me.  the dodson family is all from tennessee and cook great southern style foods…no matter what it is….so yummy!  i fell in love with the family and their food that day:) one of my favorite things (which everything has become my favorite for the holidays) is the sweet potato casserole.  i asked for the recipe.  i see looks flying across the table….uh oh….what had i done now….i had experienced people telling me they don’t share their recipes, so i was thinking fast as how to save this situation with declining needing it…..then the story came out….

it was from my {then} boyfriend’s ex girlfriend.  seems it was a secret family recipe of her family that she shared to win this family over to her.  it wasn’t supposed to be shared, but guess what?????  i got it 😉

and as in most of my recipes, as i am sure you do, it has been changed….to protect the innocent to make it my own.  one year — and many since then, our family has not been eating white sugar or white flour. so i made some changes to it to make it more healthy, and no one seems to take notice and its really good.

Sweet Potato Casserole

  • 2 C. sweet potatoes, baked
  • 1 C. sugar (I use 1/2 C. honey)
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 C. butter
  • 1/2 C. milk, maybe more
  • 1 t. vanilla

Mix these together and top with:

  • 1 C. brown sugar (I have used sucanat, but not as good)
  • 1 C. chopped pecans
  • 1/2 C. flour–i usually use whole wheat, but this year will experiment with gluten free ingredients
  • 6 T. butter

Bake at 350 for 35 minutes.

this recipe, the biscuits with cranberry sauce and the turkey and gravy are the ONLY things my family will eat for left overs….I am left with all the other good stuff:)

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not one, not two, but three!

i have been very neglectful of my commitment to posting some of our holiday foods and the traditions around them….it has been a very busy fall!

our holiday meals–Thanksgiving and Christmas are always the same….unless i am just too busy and worn out to try to make them twice…but even then, i usually end up making them…it just wouldn’t be those holidays with out that food…..

our menu usually consists of:

  • turkey–the recipe for our very, VERY favorite turkey is here
  • dressing (of which ALLLLLL the children HATE–but i love)
  • cranberry sauce (s)–the reason for this post….
  • gravy–find this with the turkey recipe ^^
  • biscuits–buttermilk, not sweet biscuits
  • yeast rolls–the recipe for those is here
  • mashed potatoes
  • sweet potato casserole
  • waldorf salad
  • green beans
  • III forks corn
  • pumpkin pie–this has become a crustless pumpkin pie that everyone LOVES
  • pecan pie–last year we made pecan bars that were SCRUMPTIOUS!
  • blackberry cobbler
  • and anything anyone else wants to bring, fix or add to this:)

i grew up eating cranberry sauce out of a can–whenever we had it…which wasn’t often.  i hated it.  it was nasty stuff to me.  anything that comes plopping out of a can with that sound….yikes!  and then you had to cut it like cold butter….YUK!  NO offense if you LIKE that kind of cranberry sauce, but I DID NOT.

the first time i had cranberry cause that i like, was one year at my dad’s home.  my step-mom had me make it.  honestly.  i didn’t even know such a thing existed.  so, she taught me how to make it, which was rather easy….

  • a bag of cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • the rind of one orange

put all that in a pot on the stove, boil til they start ‘popping’ and take it off the stove…that easy….i was a little hesitant.  it didn’t look like the stuff in the can…but then i tasted it…..sooooo yummy!  i could have eaten the whole pan of it 😉 with my turkey, with my biscuits, with my dressing…with everything and by itself.  i LOVED it.

i began making it for my family–they didn’t have my same opinion of it 😉  so…to not lose the ability to still have it and be able to enjoy it…and the {sometimes} adventurous cook that i can be…..i decided to experiment.  I changed the water to orange juice….that helped.

one day, i was perusing….not sure what now…the internet, a magazine or the tv, but i heard or saw a recipe using fresh ginger.  we love ginger, so i decided to try it.  i went to make it and realized that the only juice i had was orange mango.  i used it.  we LOVED it.

so, another time, i didn’t have white sugar….i know…..how can that happen at thanksgiving…..and this was before the time when the stores remained open.  i am sure i had used it all on the pies made the days before.  so….i used brown sugar.  it was AWESOME.

then.  last year, we added a bit of finely chopped jalepeno to it….not my favorite, but some of the guys loved it, too.

SO…NOW…here we are with several people liking their cranberry sauce different ways….so we make them all 😉

if this is confusing….comment and i will clarify…but basically its the same recipe on the bag of cranberries with our own adaptations and experimentations…..and let this be an encouragement…you can probably add many more different things and make it your own, too.


Gail - November 17, 2011 - 11:06 am

This is A similar sauce that Daria makes but I live the idea of a bit of jalepeno in there. Hmmmmm we still have some on our bush too. I’m gonna try it. Yum. Thanks Ginny.

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stepping stones

i was in a lost place.  i felt like i was drowning very quickly. i knew from what i had been told and what i was learning that i had…HAD to keep my focus on God.  there were so many things that were spinning around and were vying for my attention.  i wanted to know what to do next and what the next few days {weeks, months and years} would look like…..God gave me a very vivid picture.  He said  ‘trust me with your next step…..just the next step’ and the picture was of me was in a creek of swirling waters and as i was feeling like i was losing my step, a stone rose up from the water. he said to step on it.  i did.  i stood firmly and solidly for a few minutes. then the water began to rise again….i was getting scared that the water was going to take me off the stone–i was balancing on my tippy toes to stay on by then…and as the water came up just high enough to knock me over , another stone rose up out of the water for me to step on.  i jumped on that one.  and the same thing happened over and over again.  i didn’t see the stones under the water. they just appeared–one at a time….right when i needed it to.

what god said was….this is trusting me….the next step will show itself when its time–not too soon or not too late…just in time.


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