Holiday, Traditions

Irish Cream – oh so good!

If you looking for a unique gift or that perfect sip yo cheer in the New Year – here is one of my holiday favorites I make. Rich creamy- with a bit of a kick!

I like to jar up with a homemade label of shelf life and instructions for refrigeration. Everything is better out of a mason jar! What a nice little gift to share… or just enjoy. So good in coffee or just over ice.

  • 1 can condensed sweet milk
  • 1 cup egg beaters (pasteurized)
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 Tbs good dark chocolate syrup ( I like Guitard)
  • 2 tsp instant coffee crystals or two solid shots of chilled espresso
  • 2 cups top shelf spiced rum
  • 1/2 cup Brandy
  • ( alcohol you use really affects the flavors and smoothness) this is my favorite proportions.

Gently mix.


Keep refrigerated- will keep up to 30 days.

-please drink responsibly and keep out of reach of children-

    • Holiday, Poultry, Traditions

      Best Turkey Ever-Brine.

      Every year it seems I get such huge birds and then fret on how to make this Turkey moist and tender. Seems the bigger the bird-the tougher the success. Ive perfected the brine recipe to save for years to come. I hope you enjoy!

      • 8 fresh apples-cored and whole fruit juiced(vita mix)
      • 4 cups water or chicken broth
      • Small jar orange marmalade
      • 2 cups kosher salt
      • Tablespoon black peppercorns
      • Four sprigs of Rosemary fresh
      • Three bayleaves
      • Fresh orange rind-1 small orange
      • 1/2 cup soysauce

      Bring all ingredients to a boil and then cool to room temperature -then refrigerate a couple hours. Talk about making your house smell like holidays. Yum

      Prep turkey to soak 24 hours. This yearTom was 24 pounds and my huge canning pot was too small. so I used a cooler and clean unscented trash-bag. This was serious improvising. Remove all the giblets from both front and back of bird. Make sure your turkey is not frozen. Then place in brine 24 hours refrigerated.

      I lined cooler with clean bag and then added brined and turkey pulling bag tight around bird to surround with the wonderful flavors.

      After 24 hours be sure to rinse your bird really well under cold tap water. You want to insure all the salt is rinsed off well inside and out. You don’t need to season more because these amazing flavors are locked in.

      I like to use a cooking bag. It cuts down on cleanup as well as cook time. With the brine I only rubbed my bird with olive oil and placed a chopped apple , 2 stalks celery and small onion in cavity for moisture.

      I allowed the bird to rest a hour before serving. Flavors were good with highlighting the turkey. Wow! So moist and tender…holiday success! I actually enjoyed the breast meat more than the dark,

      Happy Holidays and best wishes to a successful meal!

      Desserts, Holiday, Traditions

      Halloween Traditions. 

      A childhood memory.

      Growing up in the small community of Long Shop Virginia the memories I cherish are around people , events and really good food. Meals were prepared and enjoyed over long conversations with laughter and love. Halloween was an event I look so forward too with planning of costumes, decorating the big house into the haunted manor, and of course the hommade goodies that were prepared in the neighborhood you had to have! Miss Allie always made hommade popcornballs , Miss Trudy did cookies, Grandma Deweese had hand pies or cake and My Momma did the famous candied apples. Times were simple and safe and we could run all over the countryside house to house getting the goodies and seeing the neighbors. If it was a good scary night- ghost tales around the candy we counted spread all across the living room floor.

      I continue the apple tradition with candied apples and now caremel too. I share with children I know their families. The kids start asking about the apples mid summer if Im still making them with excitement and antisapation. Im so happy those fun memories live on and continue to excite and thrill in such simple ways.

      Be safe and love one another but most important make memories that last!

      Candied Apples

      • 2 cup sugar
      • 1/2 cup karo syrup
      • 2 tbs water
      • 1/8 tsp cinnimon
      • 1/2 tsp vanilla
      • 1 tsp red food coloring
      • Candy theomometer
      • Heavy stock pot
      • Parchment paper
      • Butter or no stick for paper
      • Popsicle sticks
      1. Clean apples and dry well
      2. Add sticks and have ready to dip
      3. Bring ingediants to a boil on stove to 300 degrees
      4. Remove from heatand dip carefully very hot candy- allowing excess to drip off
      5. Wrap after cool or they will get gummy overnight.
      Breads, Holiday, Traditions

      Jack Bread … childhood favorite 

      Jack was a wonderful family friend that always payed a visit with his famous sweet warmbread to share neighborly love. I will alwAys remember his sky blue eyes and hearty laugh.  I found the recipe that was close to Jacks and relive the tradition sharing these loaves with neighbors and friends on holiday mornings. Enjoy…

      1/3 cup melted butter

      2packets yeast

      1 cup warm wateR

      2 eggs beaten

      1/4 cup sugar

      1 tsp salt

      5 cup flour

      1 egg yolk for egg wash

      1 T water

      Raw sugar

      Disolve yeast in wArm water

      Add melted butter, sugar, salt, eggsand flour.

      Knead on floured suface until smooth but not tough.

      Place in greased bowl  let rise 1 hour

      Divide into four pieces

      Shape into 18″ rope and braid two together

      Repeat with other two ropes

      Cover on baking sheet- rise 45 min

      Brush with yolk water and sprinkle with corse suger

      Bake 350 for 20-25 min

      ( stale loaved make amazing bread pudding or french toast. )
      This can be made in large setting bread makers.