Pictures of my Beautiful New Old Kentucky Home!

I love the beautiful surroundings…in my ‘New Old Kentucky Home’! I am taking part in a photo challenge and will be posting a new picture every day for the next week.  I am focusing on my surroundings and nature.

I just might have a recipe or two…inspired by the photos. Hmm….could be a fun week!

I hope you’ll take this week’s journey with me and I hope that it will inspire you to take notice of your surroundings.

Day One…

Something to Leave Behind….photo taken by Victoria…
‘My New Old Kentucky Home’.

The Little Lonely Tractor…

There is a little lonely tractor,

parked and left behind…

It may not be remembered,

But it is ever close on MY mind.

It sits in my backyard…

among the trees and brush,

still sheltered by a small roof,

somewhat guarded from gaining rust.

I love this little tractor,

it adds to the scenic view…

no longer useful for intents and purpose….

new life, new purpose, new view.

It belongs here…in my ‘Beautiful, New Old Kentucky Home’

I hope you will find the beauty and joy in all that surrounds you today!

Vee

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Yes…we had dessert…Kentucky Spice Cookies…Yum!

Ok…you had the Taco Soup…right? Ready for dessert?

Ginger and Jam...tasty little gems, Kentucky Spice Cookies

We had…Kentucky Spice Cookies (with Vanilla Ice Cream)! They are tasty! If you love gingersnaps or gingerbread…I think you’ll love these snappy gems also. I found this recipe in my San Francisco A La Carte cookbook (go figure). According to SFALC… “The recipe for these marvelous morsels migrated to California with some old Kentucky families and have become a Western favorite.”OK…I lived in the West and the Southwest.  I didn’t know about Taco Soup…or a Western favorite cookie? I have to come all the way across the plains to found out about these things!  There are no eggs in this recipe (nope…I double checked) so they will be a tasty treat for my kids and grandkids that are vegan.

This recipe makes A LOT of cookies (more than 7 dozen)…so, next time I will cut the recipe in half…now that is not a half baked idea! 

KENTUCKY SPICE COOKIES (adapted from SFALC)

3 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup shortening

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground cloves

3/4 teaspoon powdered ginger

3/4 teaspon allspice

2 teaspoons salt

2 Tablespoons baking soda

1 cup dark molasses (no animals were injured)

5 cups unsifted all purpose flour

1/2 cup water

Sugar to roll dough in (approx. 3/4 cup)

Strawberry or Raspberry Jelly (I used Smucker’s Peach and Smucker’s Strawberry/Blackberry)

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together the sugar, shortening, spices, salt and baking soda. Add the molasses and blend well. Gradually mix in the flour. Add the water to make a dough of piecrust consistency. For each cookie, take 1 teaspoon of dough and roll it into a ball, then roll (the ball, of course) in sugar. Place on  an ungreased cookie sheet, make a small indentation in the top of each ball and fill with a small amount of jam or jelly (less is better…and the cookies bake better and quicker with a smaller amount).

 

Now…the directions say to bake the cookies for 8 minutes. I baked them for 6 minutes…then rotated the baking sheet…and baked for another 3 – 4 minutes. They were crispier that way.  When the cookies are stored…the moisture from the jelly (or jam) will soften the cookie. The extra baking time worked for me and did not overbake the cookie.  Remove from oven, sprinkle with sugar if you like…and enjoy!

Allow to cool before storing.

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Taco Soup….it’s popular in these parts!

Here’s what we had cookin’ at Home and The Range this weekend….

Taco Soup!

It seems to be a popular dish here in Kentucky. Funny…I moved here from the Southwest and never heard about this tasty soup before. So…Poppy (my husband) and I decided to gather some of the kids around the chuck wagon  (it was really the kitchen table) …and give it a try.

It was great! 

 Taco Soup

The Roundup...Taco Soup Ingredients

1 lb. lean ground beef

1 onion, chopped

1 pkg taco seasoning

1 pkg ranch seasoning, dry

2 large cans diced tomatoes, undrained

1 small can Rotel, undrained

*2 cans black beans

*2 cans pinto beans

1 cup frozen corn (or  one can of  corn)

 

* For this batch we used one can black beans, one can pinto beans and one can Bush’s Grillin’ Beans. You could use any variety or blend of beans.

In a large pot…combine beans, diced tomatoes, Rotel and frozen corn. Heat…and simmer while cooking the ground beef and onion.

Beans, Tomatoes & Corn...a Pretty Medley of Colors

 

Chop onion and cook in 2 T. oil and 1 T. butter…until transparent and lightly browned.Then add to the bean mixture…continue heating.

Poppy Chops Onion...we won't tell him he doesn't have to slice them first...he was being very helpful.

Brown the ground beef and drain. Then…add the dry ranch seasoning packet along with the taco seasoning packet and mix well.

Adding Seasonings to Ground Beef

Then…add the ground beef/seasoning mixture to the bean mixture.

Heat, Simmer...

Heat and then simmer until flavors are well blended…about 20 – 30 minutes.

 And…serve with grated cheese (we used a blend of colby, cheddar and monterey jack), a dollop of sour cream and chopped green onion. 

 It is a bit spicey…but we had a four year old that  enjoyed it with us.  She is soooooooo cute!

Tasty Taco Soup and Cheesy Cornbread...quick,easy...great!

We enjoyed our soup with warm cheesy cornbread. I added a cup of the same cheese blend to my cornbread batter.  If you should feel inclined to enjoy this same combination…the cornbread is great on it’s own…but we had butter on it and the little one had honey on hers. Finger lickin’ good!

Cheesy Cornbread...Yum!

 

This is a hearty, quick and easy…delicious meal! 

Of course we had dessert!…Stay tuned for more…let this hearty dish settle for a while!

But…if you missed it…check out Grandma’s Pudding at http://athomeandtherange.blogspot.com

(I used to be over there). That would be a nice finish for this meal too. Hmmmm…so many choices.

From Home and The Range…May your day be blessed, simply…with great food and loved ones to share it with!

I hope you enjoyed your visit!

Vee