Another Day . . .

The sun is shining, the temps are in the 50’s – it’s another GOOD DAY! You read about the face masks in my last post – I received a face mask request from a friend who’s a Pharmacy Tech. at one of our local hospitals. She asked if the people in her pharmacy could obtain some of the masks my ladies were making; she said they only use masks when they have to leave the pharmacy to take meds. to other floors or nursing stations. One of my friends was finishing up on the last of the masks she could make (she was running out of supplies to make them) so she gave me her last 8. With the new ‘STAY AT HOME’ restrictions in our state, I was able to drive to her porch & pick up said masks in a bag then drive to the Pharm. tech’s condo parking lot to drop them off. It seems so strange now – maintaining a 6 foot distance but I called & let her know I was in her parking lot then I put the mask bag on her step & moved back 6 feet from said bag. She came down & picked them up – we chatted (maintaining the above distance) – now they have the masks they need and we’re good. (I spoke to my friend the nurse who originally started this mask idea – she said they are using the sewn masks OVER their regular masks because, at this time due to the extreme shortage, their nurses are forced to wear the paper masks for 5 days – so they’re wearing the sewn ones OVER the paper ones for extra protection. It’s a VERY sad time when you think of it. We’re just glad that we can help in a small way. A lady who’s a friend-of-a-(knitting) friend called to tell me she was going to sew masks – she did, and delivered 40 masks to the local hospital. She was SO moved by the reception of the person at the hospital doors (“The man was in tears, thanking me over and over”) that she cried all the way home. She was SO moved by that, she cut out another 100, sewed 40 immediately & had her granddaughter deliver them the next day. (same reception to the masks – tears of joy). The granddaughter said that there were other people inside, waving and crying. Sometimes it’s the little things we do for others that bring great joy.


Due to the current ‘shortage’ of some foods, I’m going to feature some homemade bread recipes – hope you enjoy!

No-Knead Cheese Bread

1 (1/4 oz) pkg. active dry yeast
1 C. warm chicken broth (110º – 115º)
2 T. sugar
1 T. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 large egg, beaten
3 C. flour, divided
1 1/4 C. finely shredded Cheddar cheese,
onion salt, optional

Grease a 9 X 5″ loaf pan with butter
In large bowl dissolve yeast in warm broth.
Add sugar, butter, salt, poultry seasoning,
egg & 1 C. flour – beat until smooth. Add
1 C. cheese & remaining flour – stir 1 minute.
Cover & let rise in a warm place until doubled,
about 30 minutes. Stir batter down, about
25 strokes. Spread batter evenly into prepared
pan. Cover & let rise until doubled, about
20 minutes. Sprinkle top with remaining
cheese (& onion salt, if using). Bake 25-30
minutes until golden brown. Remove from
pan to wire rack to cool. Serve warm.
Makes 1 loaf
refrigerate leftovers

No-Knead Harvest Bread

1/2 C. whole wheat flour
1/2 C. oatmeal
1/2 C. assorted seeds: sesame,
flaxseed, sunflower kernels and/or
poppy seeds, divided
1 3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. active dry yeast
3 C. bread flour, divided
2 1/4 C. cool water (55º – 65º)
2 T. molasses

additional cornmeal
In large bowl combine whole wheat
flour, cornmeal, 1/3 C. seeds, salt,
yeast & 2 1/2 C. bread flour. Stir in
water & molasses until blended.
(dough will be wet & sticky)
Cover with plastic wrap & let stand
at room temp. 12-18 hours until more
than doubled in size & bubbles are
present on the surface.
Stir in remaining bread flour

Grease a baking sheet & sprinkle well
with additional cornmeal. Turn dough
onto sheet & gently shape (using a spatula)
into a 9 inch round loaf. Cover & let rise
at room temp. 2 hours until dough holds
an indentation when gently pressed. (loaf
will slightly increase in size).

Arrange 1 oven rack at lowest rack setting;
place second rack in middle of oven. Place an
oven-safe skillet on bottom rack.
Preheat oven & skillet to 475 degrees F.
In small saucepan bring 2 C. water to boil.
Gently press remaining seeds onto top of dough.
Wearing oven mitts, place bread on top oven
rack. Pull bottom rack out & add water to skillet
(work carefully & quickly, pouring water AWAY
from you.) Carefully slide bottom rack back into
place & quickly close oven door to trap steam.

Reduce heat to 425 degrees F.
Bake 10 minutes. Remove skillet from oven.
Bake 20-25 minutes longer until deep golden
brown & bread sounds hollow when center is
tapped. Cool on wire rack. Makes 1 loaf.

NOTE: Recipe was tested using a cast-iron skillet.
If using a different pan, confirm it’s safe to 450º

Italian Snack Bread

1 pkg. (1/4 oz) active dry yeast
1 C. warm water (120º – 130º)
1 large egg, lightly beaten, room temp.
2 T. olive oil
2 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 C. flour

1 1/2 C. thinly sliced onion
1/4 C. olive oil
1 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
(1 tsp. coarse salt, optional)
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray
In large bowl dissolve yeast in warm water.
Add egg, oil, oregano, salt & 1 1/2 C. flour:
beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining
flour to form a soft dough. Cover & let rest
10 minutes. Pat dough into prepared pan.
In large skillet saute onion in oil until tender –
spoon evenly over dough & sprinkle top with
rosemary & salt, if desired. Cover with plastic
wrap & let rise in a warm place until doubled,
about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Bake bread 25-30 minutes until lightly browned.
Cut into small squares & serve warm or at
room temperature. Serves about 8


Chicken Parm Soup

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 T. tomato paste
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 (15 oz) can diced or crushed tomatoes
6 C. chicken broth
1 (8 oz.) pkg. penne pasta
3/4 C. cooked, shredded chicken breast (about 2)
1 1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 T. freshly chopped parsley
kosher salt/ground black pepper

In large pot over medium heat, heat oil.
Add onion – cook, stirring until soft, about
5 minutes. Add garlic & cook 1 minute. Stir
in tomato paste, red pepper flakes,
tomatoes & broth – bring to a simmer. Add
pasta – cook 8-10 minutes until al dente.
Add chicken, mozz. & Parm. cheeses & parsley.
Season generously with salt/pepper. Let
cheese melt then ladle into bowls.
Serves 4


Crockpot Million Dollar Pasta

2 lb. ground beef
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
1 C. ricotta cheese
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. dried parsley
2 (24 oz, ea) jars spaghetti sauce,
1 (24 oz) jar water (fill empty
spag. jar with water & use)
1 (16 oz) pkg. cavatappi pasta*
2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese

Brown & crumble gr. beef; season
with salt/pepper; drain. In medium
bowl mix cream cheese, sour cream,
ricotta, minced garlic & parsley.
In bottom of 6 qt. crockpot (or larger)
add half a jar of spaghetti sauce. Evenly
layer half the box of pasta on top of sauce.
Pour remaining sauce over noodles; pour
on half a jar of water. Layer half cooked
beef over top. Dollop entire cream cheese
mixture as evenly as possible over beef
layer – do not stir. Evenly layer rest of
pasta on top & top with remaining jar of
spaghetti sauce. Pour another half jar of
water on top of sauce. Layer rest of cooked
beef on top.
Cover & cook on Low 3-4 hours. Stir mixture;
layer with 2 C. shredded mozz. cheese. Cover
an additional 15-20 minutes until cheese melts.
Serves 6

(*cavatappi pasta: small spiral tubes, sometimes
with ridges)


Sassy Potato/Corn Chowder

4 slices bacon, cut into 1″ pieces
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
1 1/4 lb. baking potatoes (about 3),
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen corn, thawed/drained
2 stalks celery, sliced
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/2 C. Miracle Whip salad dressing
2 T. flour
2 C. milk

In a large saucepan cook & stir bacon
until crisp. Remove from pan; drain on
paper towels – discard drippings. Add
broth & vegetables to saucepan & bring
to boil. Simmer on Low 15 minutes until
potatoes are tender. Mix Mir. Whip & flour
in a medium bowl until blended – stir in milk;
add to potato mixture with bacon. Cook 3-5
minutes until soup is slightly thickened &
heated through, stirring occasionally.
Serves 6


Apple Coffee Cake

2 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
3 tsp. cinnamon, divided
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 C. (1 stick) butter, softened
1 C. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
8 oz. sour cream
2 medium apples, chopped (about
2 C.)
8 T. chopped walnuts or almonds,
1/2 C. brown sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray bundt pan with nonstick
spray & lightly flour. Combine flour,
salt, nutmeg & 2 tsp. cinnamon in
medium bowl; stir in baking soda &
powder. Mix softened butter & sugar
in separate bowl until creamy. Beat
in eggs, one at a time, combine until
creamy. Add vanilla & sour cream;
mix until well blended. Sift in dry
ingredients, beating mixture on Low
speed of elec. mixer to form batter-
like consistency. Fold in nuts & apples,
stirring gently to evenly distribute.
Pour batter into prepared pan; sprinkle
top evenly with brown sugar & 1 tsp.
cinnamon. Bake 50-65 minutes until
a toothpick inserted near center
comes out clean. Cool cake in pan
20-30 minutes then turn out onto
a serving plate. Serve warm.
Serves 10-12


Hope you are all in good health and ‘finding
something to do’ (if you are ‘sheltering at home’).
Yes, I’ll agree – it’s BORING. I was SO GLAD to just
get OUT in my CAR to pick up/deliver those masks
today! I realized I haven’t driven my car in almost
2 weeks (husband drove Monday when we went
for groceries). I thought about stopping at Burger
King today but because of all the hype about the
virus spreading, decided to just eat at home. Drove
by our favorite restaurant – it was SO strange to see
NO cars in the parking lot (all restaurants are closed
except those who can do take out). I noticed gas
prices here in Michigan are now at $1.49/9 – that
was a surprise! (I still have almost a full tank which
I got BEFORE the big Governor’s Order to stay at
home.)  I’m TRYING to convince myself to knit &
crochet more – before all this knitting & crochet were
my ‘things to do to relax’ after being busy – now it’s
one of the few things I have to do! Weird! Who
would have EVER thought that the ENTIRE NATION
would be at a stand-still?

Enough of my thoughts & rants – STAY HEALTHY
if you can!

(Air) HUGS!


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