Monday, February 6, 2012


I have been making a lot of things from scratch lately. It kind of goes along with the food-storage, preparedness thing, as well as the don't feed your family crap thing :) So here are a few of my favorite recipes!

Chocolate Syrup
1/2 to 2/3 cup cocoa powder, according to taste
1 cup water
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
Mix the cocoa powder, salt, and water in a saucepan.  Heat and whisk until cocoa is dissolved.  Add sugar and whisk to dissolve.  Bring to a boil over medium heat; reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes.  Add vanilla.  Remove from heat and continue to whisk mixture until it settles down.  Let cool for 1 to 2 hours.  Store in a flip top bottle or canning jar with screw top. 

Taco Seasoning
1 cup dried minced onion
1/3 cup chili powder
2 tablespoons cumin 
4 teaspoons crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon oregano
4 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder

Combine all ingredients and store in a cool, dry place.

When you're using for Mexican dishes, use about 1 tablespoon or so per
1 pound ground beef, or chicken, beans or rice. More if you like the extra
(not sure if this came from Leanne at Saving Dinner or Kathy at Just in Case)

Hot Chocolate!
3 1/4 C Powdered Milk
3/4 C Sugar
1/2 C Cocoa
1/2 t salt
I blended this in the blender for a smoother consistency. I use about 2T per 6oz cup.
(This came from Kathy at Just in Case, I halved it)

Instant Oatmeal
 I whiz 6 1/2 cups rolled oats in the food processor. Add 1 cup dried milk, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tablespoon cinnamon and maybe some cloves or nutmeg. I add some extras like chopped walnuts, raisins or dried apples.  To prepare it, put 1 cup oatmeal mix in a pan with 1 cup boiling water. Cook it for about 1 minute over low heat, stirring constantly, then let it sit for another minute. 
(again, Kathy!)

A to Z Bread
A to Z: Use one of the following; or a mixture of the following, to equal 2 cups, except as indicated.
Apples – grated
Apricots – chopped
Bananas – mashed
Carrots – grated
Cherries – pitted & chopped
Coconut – fresh, ground
Dates – pitted & finely chopped
Eggplant – ground up
Figs – finely chopped
Grapes – seedless
Honey – omit sugar above
Lemons – use only 1/2 cup juice
Marmalade – omit 1 cup sugar
Oranges – chopped
Peaches – fresh or canned, chopped
Peppermint – use only 1/2 cup
Pears – chopped
Pineapple – crushed, well drained
Prunes – chopped; use only 1 cup
Pumpkin – canned
Raspberries – fresh or well drained frozen
Rhubarb – finely chopped
Strawberries – fresh or well drained frozen
Sweet Potatoes – grated coarsely
Tapioca – cooked
Tomatoes – use only 1/2 cup sugar
Yams – cooked and mashed
Yogurt – plain or flavored
Zucchini – ground or grated and well drained

  • 3 cups Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 3 teaspoons Cinnamon, Optional
  • 3 whole Eggs
  • 1 cup Oil
  • 1-¾ cup Sugar
  • 2 cups A To Z
  • 3 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1 cup Chopped Nuts (optional)

Preparation Instructions
Sift dry ingredients; set aside.
Beat eggs in a large bowl; add oil and sugar; cream well.
Add A to Z and vanilla. Add dry ingredients. Mix well. Add nuts.
Spoon into 2 well greased loaf pans, or 1 large well greased bundt pan. Bake in preheated oven at 325* for 1 hour.

Cream Cheese
1 quart homemade or store-bought plain yogurt (whole milk or low-fat, depending on your preference)
(I like Dannon Natural-the only ingredient is milk and yogurt culture)


Place a clean kitchen towel or clean muslin in a colander.
 Place the colander in a bowl that is large enough to hold it.
 Add the yogurt to the lined colander and wrap the towel over the top to cover (or use a plate).

 Leave this to drain for about 5 hours in the refrigerator.
If you want a thicker consistency, leave it longer, making sure to empty what is draining so it doesn't reach the bottom of the colander and get reabsorbed.

Store your finished cream cheese in a resealable container in the fridge.
Your cream cheese will last as long as your yogurt would, so if you used purchased yogurt (rather than making it yourself), check the expiration date and use that as your guide.

 If you want to get fancy, you can add flavorings to your cream cheese. Try adding homemadestrawberry jam for strawberry-flavored cream cheese. If you spent time dehydrating onions, then adding those (or fresh green onions) and chives from your garden will make a tasty chive-and-onion cream cheese spread.

Wonderful with some homemade strawberry jam stirred in!

Berry Jam

9 cups crushed berries
5 cups sugar

Combine berries and sugar in a large pan.  Bring slowly to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves.  Cook rapidly, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, until the boiling jam drips off a cool, metal spoon dipped into it in a single flake or sheet.  (If you prefer perfect measurements, find out the exact boiling point for your elevation and add 8 degrees F to it.  That is the "gelling point".)  Remove from heat.  Ladle jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.  Put on two-piece caps and process in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes.

I will share more recipes with you as I try them. These are all tried and true!