Blanching & Freezing Broccoli

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My family loves broccoli. When my son was young his preschool teacher asked him what his favorite food was and he replied, “Broccoli!” That about sums it up. Yes, I sing “Choppin’ Broccoli” as I prepare it.

I have never grown it and from stories of all the bugs broccoli can get I will probably never grow it. Why grow it when it is so available all year round. I found the best place to purchase it was at Costco. They have a frozen organic broccoli that was wonderful. A few years ago they stoping using the vendor and now carrie another broccoli but I don’t like it because the piece are cut the the size of plums. So you need to cut it to put it to eat. Problem: kids don’t take the time to cut food so it wouldn’t get eaten. We stopped eating broccoli and then my family stared missing it. I then stared purchasing  the raw broccoli in a large bag at Costco. Yeah! We had broccoli back. Then another problem which I assume many Costco shopper have, the broccoli spoiled before we could eat it.

Solution: Freeze the raw broccoli from Costco.

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Step one: Soak broccoli in water bath.

Step two: Start boiling a large pot of water on stove. While you are waiting for water to boil continue with next steps.

Step two: Cut broccoli florets to your liking, (we like bite size).

Step three: Once water is boiling place cut broccoli in water and boil for 2 minutes.

Step four: Fill sink with ice water and place broccoli in water for 3 minutes.

I love the color of the broccoli after it is blanched. It is so dark and rich in color. As an artist, beautiful!

Step five: Remove from sink into a strainer and let it sit for several minutes.

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Step six: Place on cookie sheet and freeze for 2-3 hours.

Step seven: Remove from freeze and place in freezer bags. Keep the bags in the freeze until you are ready to use.

Okay, looks like lots of steps but they are simple and easy. It only took me a 15 minutes.

Easy, fun, and saves money. Enjoy “Choppin’ Broccoli”

 

Kate DiCamillo, Stories are Light

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So this is very random. I follow Kate DiCamillo, children’s author, on FaceBook. My kids love her books and I do work for a library so I do follow a few authors. She always post such inspiring and uplifting quotes from her books. A few days ago she posted this wonderful quote from The Tale of Despereaux:

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Over this past year I have realized the importance of Light. It is the hope that we all hold onto when we are surrounded by the darkness of our world. Yes, Kate, light is so precious. Please keep telling stories and scatter sunshine all along your way.

What story has brought you light and lifted you out of darkness?

Scatter Sunshine

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Psalm 100: 2
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

Scatter Sunshine. Bring hope, love, and sunshine into this world that is suffering from pain, hate, and anger. Light is more powerful than the dark.

Mom, Be Peaceful.

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I kneel at the side of my bed as I weep for my children. I want to be the mom my children need but don’t feel I am or will ever be that mom. The only one thing that gives me peace is that I know the Savior loves my children and will pick up were I lack. Perhaps I am doing better than I think I am. Thank You Elder Holland for you talk.

Buttermilk Banana Bread

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/4 cups Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Butter, softened
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups Mashed bananas (3 to 4 medium)
  • 1/2 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 1 tsp Salt

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat oven 350°. Grease bottom of the pans.
Mix sugar and butter in large bowl. Stir in eggs until well blended. Add bananas, buttermilk and vanilla. Beat until smooth, stir in flour, baking soda and salt just until moistened. Pour into pans.

Pan size:
2 loaves 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 baking time 1 hour
1 loaf 9 x 5 x 3 baking time 1 1/4 hours
4 to 5 mini loaves baking time 45 minutes to 1 hour

We Survived Winter…or did we?

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I love spring and seeing all the new buds and plants sprouting out of the ground after a long, dark and cold winter. With what is growing in my garden you would think winter was gone and spring had arrived.

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Nope…three days of waking up with snow on the ground. And don’t forget the burst of snow storms that go as quickly as they come.

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This snow just reminds me of a little saying my mom used to say. “Spring has sprung, Flowers have ris’ I just wonder what all this white stuff is.”

Happy Spring everyone. What is growing in your garden this spring?

Happy Heart Day from the Past

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Happy Valentines!

Years ago I received a beautiful gift that I treasure and love to display in my home.

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Coming from a family of quilters my mother had a closet full of old quilts that were too worn out to use yet she couldn’t seem to throw them away because they were made by the loving hands of her Grandma Emma. My mother wanted to share Grandma Emma’s quilting with all of her kids so she simply cut out hearts out of the ragged quilts and placed them in frames. Now Emma’s quilts and memories can live on for a little longer. I am also reminded of true love of family.

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What have you done old quilts that you can’t use anymore?

Yellow and Pink Quilt

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This has been a long project for over the past year. Not that it is a time consuming but that my life is time consuming. With that being said I still need to finish it. I promised my daughters that I would finish for their 11th birthday but now I am aiming for their 12th. Realistically it will be on the frames ready to quilt by their birthday. Hey, they can help with the quilting.

IMG_4745This is my third quilt to piece and hand quilt. My first was a twin quilt made from baby dresses and clothes from my twin girls. My girls love the quilt because they like to look at fabrics from clothes they wore when they were little. I planned to make two but after I finished I started the second one but the pattern proved to be too difficult so I turned it into a baby quilt.

In comes the pink and yellow quilt. They are quite beautiful with the bright yellow and pink colors are offset with a soft cream fabric with a delicate flower print. I choose a quilt with larger blocks so there would be less cutting.  Less cutting = quicker finish. In all there are 30 large blocks that make up a queen quilt. The cutting is completed and large blocks are all sown. Today I trimmed all the blocks to prepare the sew all the blocks together.

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IMG_4747I’ll keep you posted on my progress on the quilt. I still need to sew all the blocks together, add a border or two, choose a back fabric, quilt, and binding.

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Random Act of Kindness Week

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What effect does a random act of kindness have on you? This week is to find out what it will do to a perfect stranger. It just might have a domino effect.

KindnessDon’t leave just a week of kindness but do it all year long. Make this world just a little more kind. You can find this print here.