Pig Ears Dog Treats

 My pup goes nuts for these! They are high in fat so just one or two a week.

We gave Wren her first pig ear at about 8 weeks, she nearly lost her mind with happiness! after buying a couple I wondered how they were preserved and processed so decided I would just make my own and have peace of mind.

These will make your family think they are having pork roast for dinner as they cook for 4 hours.

Every dog I know loves these!

 Pig Ear Dog Treats

Ingredients:

  • Package of raw pig ears (as many as you like) I get mine at the Asian Market.
  • Olive oil

 

Directions:

  • Cut pig ears in two or three strips
  • Coat with olive oil
  • Lay all the pig ear strips on the wire rack.
  •  line pan underneath with tin foil to catch any drippings.
  • Place the pan in the oven and bake the ears for about 4 hours.
  • The ears will turn a nice golden brown.
  • They will also puff up quite a bit.
  • Let the strips cool for a bit before serving them to your dog.
  • Any unused portions should be stored in the fridge in a paper bag until you are ready to use them.

Love Hope

Wren’s Herbal Dog Treat

 

A little over a year ago our family lost our beloved Hannah, she was a sweet dog that was loved by everyone she met, and at 16 had a full and happy life. It took me about a year to be ready for a new family member, and then the emptiness of a house without a pup got to much to bare.

MEET WREN!

When I caught the puppy bug…I was hit hard! Right about the same time while having dinner with friends They mentioned their daughter and got a Chocolate Lab, and they just had a new litter that day!  UM WHAT! (meant to be!) We talked to the now 7 months pup owner from the first litter who thought we would be a great match, and introduced us to the Family (not a breeder) and the rest all happened fast! 8 weeks later… Wren (Who picked me by the way) She is Sweet and crazy smart and in the 2 weeks we have had her has learned to, come when called by her name, knows what “leave it” and “no” means, can sit, stay and fetch on command (we have video because friends would not believe us lol) and is a master spot stealer (see above photo…she tricked me into leaning forward and then dashed into my spot…  To say that we are in love with this little girl would be an understatement!  She is sleeping on my feet as I blog, happy me!

I can not say enough about good nutrition and your pup, if you want a long happy healthy life for them, feed them quality food!     

 

Treat your pup with the gift of yummy nutrition! 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup organic coconut flakes
  • ½ cup organic Flax seed
  • 1/2 cup organic peanut butter or nut butter
  • 2 Tbsp organic sunflower oil
  • 1/2 cup organic coconut flour
  • 1 organic banana
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

Herbs

1 Tbsp organic Turmeric powder

1 Tbsp organic Chia seeds

1 Tbsp organic chopped rosemary

Directions:

  • Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees.
  • Blend all ingredients together until well mixed.
  • Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place on lined baking sheet.
  • Set timer for 10 minutes, bake, and then rotate cookies.
  • Set timer for an additional 10 minutes and bake.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool on a baking sheet.
  • Place in an air tight container for storage.

Hug your pup for me!

Love Hope

 

Buffalo Wings in the CrockPot

THAT MOMENT WHEN: you go to make Buffalo Wings in the CrockPot and you realize that bottle of sauce that is in your pantry got opened (by some child that will remain nameless) and put back on the shelf…..and now has turned an unusual color, BUT you really want to make these, you figure out how to make it from scratch!

Lucky for me I love having an arsenal of all kinds of hot sauces, their are so many awesome varieties that can add just the right punch to a dish.  They aren’t all packed with heat, however they are packed with flavor so I use them often.  Have fun playing  around with this to your taste and heat tolerance.

These are fall off the bone tender and packed with flavor! Today I’m serving them with a simple Blue Cheese Salad. Lets get started!

 

Buffalo Wings in the CrockPot

Ingredients:

One large pack Chicken wings (15 wings or so)

FOR SAUCE:

23 cup hot sauce, I used Tapatio Salsa Picante Hot Sauce.

12 cup butter

1 12 tbsp white vinegar

12 tsp Worcestershire sauce

14 tsp cayenne pepper

14 tsp garlic powder

1 salt and pepper, to taste

One packet of Ranch seasoning 

Directions:

  • Place wings in crock pot, and set on low.
  • Combine hot sauce, butter, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, salt and pepper, and Ranch seasoning in a saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer while stirring with a whisk. As soon as all is combined and smooth, remove from heat.
  • Pour sauce over wings and cook on low 6 hours.

 

Love Hope

 

Easy Banana Pudding Cake

This is a great, quick and yummy way to use up some over rip Bananas, so moist and flavorful!

You could also do the yellow cake portion from scratch, but today I was all about something fast….it’s 105 out today! I think this will be a great way to top off our Sunday dinner of Pork ribs, Corn on the Cobb, and pasta salad.  Once you taste it you won’t feel the least bit guilty about the box cake mix….Enjoy!

Yes I own 16 place settings of different colored fiesta wear,(among a staggering amount of various serving wear and vintage pieces) and I feel genuine anxiety if their is a color I don’t own.  I have been collecting for about 37 years and I use them daily. I just love all the happy color! And it all looks even better with cake on it so lets do this! yummmm CAKE!

Banana Pudding Cake

INGREDIENTS:
  • 2 very, very ripe medium bananas, roughly mashed.
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 (4-serving size) package of banana cream instant pudding powder, vanilla bean pudding is great also.
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • ¼ cup olive oil, can sub veg oil if needed.
  • Optional Icing: I like to drizzle cream cheese frosting, or dust with powdered sugar.

 

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 350F, with rack on lower-middle position. Grease and flour a bundt pan and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine cake mix and instant pudding powder. Add eggs, milk, sour cream, and oil. Whisk just until incorporated.  Fold in bananas just until combined; don’t over-mix.
  • Pour into prepared bundt pan.
  • Bake 35-45 minutes, or just until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few tender crumbs attached. My oven takes 35 minuets, so keep an eye out. Don’t over bake.
  • Cool completely in pan on rack. Once cool, Invert and remove cake.
  •  Frost if desired.

Love Hope

Baked Beans

 These Beans!

I have to give full disclosure here…I was never a big fan of baked beans…until these! Thick and rich and BACON! Take them to your next event and you will come home with an empty pan and everyone asking for the recipe. It’s a great feeling when you walk in and people see what you have and go YES! I was hoping you were bringing your Bacon Beans!

Ingredients:

  • 8 slices bacon, halved
  • 1 medium onion, cut into small dice
  • 3 large cans (28 ounces each) pork and beans
  • ¾ cup barbecue sauce
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup distilled or cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard or 2 tablespoons Dijon
 

Instructions:

  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325°F. Fry bacon in large, deep sauté pan skillet until bacon has partially cooked and released about ¼ cup drippings. Remove bacon from pan and drain on paper towels.
  2. Add onions to drippings in pan and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add beans and remaining ingredients; bring to a simmer. (If skillet is not large enough, add beans and heat to a simmer then transfer to a large bowl and stir in remaining ingredients).
  3. Pour flavored beans into a greased 13-by 9-inch (or similar size) ovenproof pan. Top with bacon, then bake until beans are bubbly and sauce is the consistency of pancake syrup, about 2 hours. Let stand to thicken slightly and serve.

Enjoy! Love Hope

Hope’s Strawberry Tea Wine

Hope’s original recipe for delicious Strawberry Tea Wine! Make it! you won’t be sorry!

How do you pick your next wine creation?

My process  goes like this…..What do I love that I want to turn into wine(Blackberry), what is in season(plum), What fruit can I get for free(Pear), what do I get the most complements on(Mead), what is so delicious that I can keep up the demand for(Mead,Strawberry,Blackberry), what is the family favorite(Mead), what is an interesting science project?(Tea)

The above picture of my current stash is a representation of this, it may also be how it came to be that I currently have 8 different wines brewing right now! I take very good notes on each wine but with that many going at once and another batch of Mead to soon join it, remembering what gets racked when, can get confusing!

A visual aid is how I stay on track, I LOVE my chalkboard!  

I started making Tea wine to blend with some of my fruit wines that needed some tannin and complexity. It also turned out to be great all on its own, so on my first rack of the small 2 gallon batch Strawberry I got a little taste and just new it would be great with that Tea. I topped it up each time I racked it with the Tea wine.

These two recipes are my own and have worked well for me, it may seem like a lot of work to start the tea wine 6 months before you start your Strawberry but if you start your Tea wine in the winter when you have no fresh fruit it works well. If your like me you will find you like Tea wine and just always have a batch brewing and some bottles on hand then if you need it your covered.

A chilled glass of Strawberry tea wine on a hot summer day…..refreshing and delicious!

 

Let’s get started!

 

 

Strawberry Tea Wine – 5 gallon

15 lb Frozen Strawberry’s

10 lb sugar

10 tsp acid blend

2 lb raisins chopped

1/2 lb dates chopped

1 tsp Tannin

1 tsp yeast nutrient

1 pkt yeast, lalvin 71B-1122

Place all ingredients except yeast in bucket. Crush fruit with hands and cover with 2 gallons boiling water. Stir with wooden or plastic paddle to dissolve sugar and simultaneously mash the strawberries. When cooled to 85 degrees F., add yeast. Cover and stir daily. Strain on 7th day, transfer to secondary fermentation vessel, top up to 5 gallon, fit fermentation trap, and set aside. Rack after 30 days and again after additional 30 days. At every racking use Tea wine to top back up to 5 gallon. Bottle when clear. Allow to age at least 6 months. Will improve to one year.

 

Tea wine – 1 Gallon

8 to 10 tea bags (good quality black tea, I have also used half black, half Jasmine)

2 lb sugar

1/2 cup Brown sugar

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/2 lb raisins

1 tsp acid blend

1 pkt yeast, Lalvin 71B-1122 (champagne yeast works well also)

Steep tea in 1/2 gallon of water for 30 minutes, then add sugar’s and raisins and bring back to boil, simmer for 30 minutes. Cool and add acid blend, mix and pitch yeast. Add all to carboy and place bubblier. rack at 90 days, then again at 90 days. after this you can bottle or just use to top off or blend with other wines.

 

Enjoy!

Love Hope

 

 

 

Hope’s Garden Bounty Salad

 

A simple, and so yummy way to use your garden bounty!

A simple, and so yummy way to use your garden bounty!

Don’t you just love a garden bounty! Something so satisfying about growing your own veggies or maybe it’s just my farm girl DNA. This is my new favorite salad, it looks and taste, like summer feels.

Ingredients:

Salad:

2 Cucumber

4 med Tomato

1/2 Red Onion

3 ripe Avocado

1 ball fresh Mozzarella (cubed)

Dressing:

Juice of one lemon

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1/4 – 1/2 cup Cilantro finely chopped

Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:

Chop all ingredients, place in bowl and mix lightly. Blend dressing and stir in.

YUM! and is so lovely with some planked Salmon, or grilled steak.

Love Hope

Hope’s Goulash

goulash

It’s comfort food weather! Fall is the best season, and the foods that fit the season are some of my favorites.

I grew up eating Goulash, it was a favorite comfort food. Deep savory flavor that you can adapt to your own taste. Top with cheese and eat with some crusty french bread….I think I just drooled a little. It smells fantastic! 

This is also easily adapted to the crock pot, just brown Onions and meat, then dump all ingredients in crock pot and set on low

Ingredients

1 – 2 Tbsp oil
1 large~ onion, chopped
3 large cloves, garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef cooked & drained
1 lb Italian sausage cooked & drained (I like hot Italian sausage)
1 – 32 oz beef broth
2 cans 14.5 oz each – chopped tomatoes & tomato sauce
1 tsp each – garlic salt, chili powder, garlic powder, Onion powder,Paprika, salt & pepper – or to taste
1 Tbsp each – Italian seasoning, Worcestershire sauce &  Brown sugar
1 – 1 1/4 lb( about 2 1/2 cups ) – elbow macaroni
 

 Directions: 

In a dutch oven, add some oil and brown the onions until tender. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
Crumble the ground beef & Italian sausage and cook until no longer pink. Drain and return to pot.

Stir in the tomatoes, sauce, seasonings, broth & Worcestershire sauce. Stir well and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer & stir in the macaroni and cover pot. Continue simmering for about 30 minutes.

 Remove from heat and let sit for 15 – 20 minutes. Add more seasoning if necessary. If too thick, add more sauce or Broth.

Love Hope

Sweet Tomato Jam

sweet tomato jam

I love late Summer, early Fall harvest! My tomato plants went crazy, so I made a batch of this crazy good tomato jam! I was caning up another batch of Jalapeno pepper jelly Because we discovered how amazing it is on feta cheese, bacon burgers and now we are down to the last jar! so you know if I’m haling out the caner I’m going to make the most of it. So tomato jam it is!  Boy is it worth it! I can’t wait to try it on a burger!

Ingredients: 

  • 4 Lb Ripe tomato (use your garden harvest, of any variety of your liking)
  • 3 cups light brown sugar
  • 2 lemons zested and juiced
  • 1/2 tsp ground Ginger
  • 3 TBSP low or no suger pectin
  • 6-8 half pint jars

Instructions: 

  • Quarter Tomatoes and put in food processor, pulse until crushed. (Skin seeds and all.)
  • Transfer the tomato puree to a medium pot set over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar, lemon zest and juice, and ground ginger.
  • Cook to boil, stirring frequently, turn down to simmer, stir occasionally, until the mixture is thick and jam like, this will take about an hour and a half to two hours. When thick and jam like add pectin and boil for one minuet.
  • Ladle hot jam into jars and water bath can for 20 min.

NOTES: This is a great base recipe super yummy on it’s own or spice it up with your favorite sweet or spicy combo, or add Bourbon and Bacon!

Love Hope

The Chair Affair

My love affair with old chairs continues, but is yet to be explained…to myself, or otherwise.  I’m OK with that, the heart wants what the heart wants, and I want old, beautifully crafted chairs!

chair3

It did break my heart a bit to have to paint this one, but it had to much damage to the vainer, so chalk paint and distressing was the way to go…but still it made me sad to have to do it. So now I owe it to her to paint her up real pretty.

chair1

This makeover went fairly fast, as in a one day project. I took steel wool to it after taking the seat off and washing it down. The beauty of doing a distressed chalk paint finish is very little prep work! I gave it three coats of chalk paint, took the sander to it for my ease of distressing it in a flash, I just use a light hand and take a little finish off at a time. Then I rubbed a light stain over it, washing it off quickly with a damp cloth so it just looks like the paint has yellowed over time. The finale touch was a nice coat of wax.

chair4

A new life for this little beauty!

UPDATE! I recovered the seat in tooled leather, I love needle point but it did not fit with my decor. I love the way it turned out and I will find another use for the needle point. 

unnamed

Love Hope