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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Rhubarb Platz

Rhubarb Platz is one of my favorite mennonite dessert recipes. It's good with many kinds of fruit, but rhubarb is my personal fav! I have a bunch of different varieties of this recipe. I have found many in the different mennonite cookbooks that I received for wedding shower gifts. I have used this recipe for the last few times. It comes from the 'Mennonite Girls Can Cook' blog. I've mentioned before how much I LOVE this blog! Anway, I tweaked my recipe a little so here it is if you're interested:
I use my large stoneware bar pan from Pampered Chef for this recipe. The listed amounts of ingredients have already been doubled to accomodate my pan, so if you're using a regular 9 x 13" pan then you should only use 1/2 the amounts of listed ingredients.
Preheat oven to 350*

In a bowl combine: 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 2 tsp baking powder Cut in: 1/2 cup butter with pastry blender. Mix together: 1 cup of milk, 2 eggs, 2 tsp vanilla and add to the dry mix. Pat down into greased pan.
Cut up fruit: I did approx 4 cups of rhubarb and 1/2 cup sugar. Spread over base.

Prepare topping: Combine 2 cups flour, 3/4 cups melted butter, 2 cups sugar. Sprinkle over fruit.
Bake in top 1/3 of oven for 45min - 1 hour ( 30 minutes for a 9 x 13" pan) or until top is nice and golden.
Great with vanilla ice cream!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Night On The Town...

I've posted before about this special group of ladies. It's been awhile since we've been able to all get together for a night out! This time we were celebrating a few birthdays that had passed over the last couple of months....and we were celebrating the return of a dear friend who's moved back 'home'. We took a Saturday evening to head into Vancouver and walk through Stanley Park. We had beautiful weather for our walk and enjoyed walking and talking with eachother. After our walk we headed to the Sutton Hotel for their Chocoholic Buffet! I had been to this years and years ago when Rob and I were dating. The restaurant was beautiful and not very busy, so we had a nice table in the corner to enjoy each other's company. We started at the crepe table where we picked our toppings, then on to the buffet that was amazing! At the end of the buffet was a chocolate fountain just in case you didn't get enough chocolate on your plate! Some ordered tea to wash down their chocolate, others ordered wine...but me, oh, I had a nice (pricey, I might add) cold, glass of milk. To me, milk is the perfect compliment to chocolate! It was a fabulous evening..I've come to expect nothing less with these ladies. Life can hand you some really difficult relationships sometimes, but God can hand you a group of girls like this..and for these girls, I am so thankful.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Rhubarb Season...

As a kid growing up we NEVER had rhubarb. All I knew about rhubarb was that a lot of people grew it, and my Dad didn't like it! So, we never had it. It was after I met Rob that I tasted it for the first time and I loved it! We lived on the farm for several years and there were rhubarb plants there so I baked with it when it was in season. Now that we've moved off the farm I buy my rhubarb by the pound from a friend in the community. She grows tons of it and supplies it to local produce stores. I bought 5 lbs from her and started my rhubarb baking. So far I've made rhubarb danishes, rhubarb platz, and I still want to make some rhubarb custard pies! Our freezer will be well stocked with rhubarb! I even have a recipe for yummy rhubarb punch. So...bear with me these next few weeks as I share some of my rhubarb recipes!

First up...Rhubarb Danishes. I got this recipe from my lovely neighbor Sheryl. She served them when we were having tea one day and I had to have the recipe. They are very time consuming, but they always turn out for me.
Mix together (I use my kitchenaid): 1 1/2 cups milk, 3/4 cup butter (not marg), 1 1/2 warm water.
Add: 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tsp. salt, 3 eggs, 3 tbsp yeast, 7 cups of flour.
Mix well in machine with dough hook. You may need to add up to another cup of flour to get the dough to the right consistency. It should pull away nicely from the bowl.

Pour into bigger bread bowl, let rise until double in size.

Divide dough into 3 balls. Roll out into big guess is about 12 x 20 (ish).

Spread a thin layer of butter (no marg) across rectangle.

Roll up like a jelly roll.

Slice into 1" rolls.

Place on pans (I use parchment because I don't have that many pans) and let rise again until double.

Prepare fruit: mix 3-4 cups rhubarb, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Make small indents in rolls, place a tsp-tbsp of fruit mixture into indent.

Optional: sprinkle sugar on top.
Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes.
These are best sampled fresh, otherwise freeze in ziploc bags.

Well, there you have it. There were a few of you who've asked for this recipe in that past, so this is for you. I've also had success doing these with cherry, lemon and blueberry fillings.
Sorry for the poor quality pictures...I made this batch at night once the kiddos were in bed.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

More Mother's Day...

Mother's Day weekend was a busy one around here, but it was also a special one! The week leading up to Mother's Day had been just CRAZY!! All you moms know what I'm talking about...a gazillion errands, events out the wazoo, trips to the dr's...etc, etc. Anyway, by the time I made it to the weekend I thought I might just lock myself in a room with a good book! But, my family went to big effort to make me feel loved. I woke up to breakfast in, here's the kicker, my hubby doesn't cook, but HE DID! I had bacon and eggs, a fresh coffee from Tim Horton's and even fresh flowers the girls had picked! Talk about shocked! I told hubby that now that I know he can cook he's in big trouble;)
We went to church and then in the afternoon I prepared a meal for my Mom. My family came over and we had a wonderful time together visiting and laughing! I received lovely gifts and cards from hubby and kiddos, and a beautiful card from my parents! I am truly blessed. I picked a special menu for supper hoping it was all my moms favourites...let's just say no one had any complaints! We had bbq'd ribs ( I must post this recipe from a friend...they were fabulous) and baked potatoes with the fixin's, salad, garlic bread, veggies, and we topped it all off with Strawberry shortcake....ate WAY too much but enjoyed every minute of it!
The older I get, (which for the record is not too old;) the more I realize how important the example of a good Mom is for a home. I am so thankful to my Mom for her priorities and love in our home growing up. I love you Mom!

Monday, May 17, 2010

More than just a mother's day tea....

So, I'm a little late in posting about mother's day, but here it is. Our old computer was dying a slow death and we finally stopped trying to revive it. So, first entry on the new computer. Mother's Day was great all around. I received an invite to a tea at Abby's preschool. I have to admit, the invite came last minute and normally I work on Fridays, so I did consider, for just a few minutes, not going. The fact is, I forgot for a moment that this wasn't about the event, but rather it was about my child. I have come into a season with Abby that is calmer and more predictable. Abby is full of life and does everything to the max. She seems to have found her 'groove' here in her 5th year and I'm noticing a change. All of that to say that it only took a moment for me to realize that the mothers day tea would mean the world to her. So, I made arrangements with work to do a split shift so I could make it to the tea. Abby was thrilled! When I walked in, Abby's face lit up like a Christmas tree. She had obviously worked so hard to make sure that I would enjoy my time with her. I loved it! We enjoyed tea and goodies together, she sang for me, and presented me with some lovely keepsake gifts...but her biggest gift was the smile plastered across her face the whole time!!! Once again I am humbled and amazed that God gave Rob and I this treasure of a child. Both Rob and I believe that God has huge things in store for Abby. There have been many gray hairs along the way, and many more to come, but if it's for His glory then who am I to complain?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

One of my faves...

This is a card I made awhile ago. I made a few like it and it remains as one of my favorites. I'd like to sit down and do a bunch more maybe trying some spring-like colours. I have to admit, I scraplifted this idea from an old Stampin' Up catalogue from years gone by. It's nice to have a card on hand like this for anyone you know who likes working outdoors.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Ready and Waiting....

I LOVE going to our local greenhouses. I find it relaxing and therapeutic. I don't usually go with all of the kids...usually just one or two. The big greenhouse has a great petting zoo where the kids love to visit the animals. There's music playing for the flowers and the staff are super helpful. My other favorite greenhouse is full of beautiful antiques that have flowers planted all over them and I get to visit with some of my local old-order Mennonite friends. I get most of my bedding plants at the larger greenhouse, but I will only get hanging baskets from the smaller one because theirs are the most beautiful and full!! I couldn't wait any longer....Mother's Day is just around the bend, and if you wait until after that to go the local greenhouses all the good stuff is gone! It's still too cold here to plant these flowers. This last week has been crazy weather...hail, wind, rain and sun...all in one day!! Every day!!! Earlier this week we had a tree come down across our road and knock out power for awhile.
But here they are...all cozy in my sunroom, getting used to the climate before they actually go outdoors. Hopefully just a couple more weeks! I'm not a great gardener, but I love having the front planters and window boxes full of colour! I'll be back to the greenhouses many more times yet this year, but probably just to relax! Hope the sun is shining wherever you are!

Monday, May 3, 2010

A prezzie from Mom...

My mom is a great gift giver! She always THINKS she is taking a gamble on a gift, but she always gives me beautiful, and personal gifts! A few weeks ago Mom and Dad were at a swap meet in Maple Ridge and mom found a building that had some neat kitchen antiques. Had I known...I would've been there!! It is hard to find cool antiques up here in Canada...they seem to be more common down in the States. Anyway, Dad had told me that Mom had found something for me at this swap meet. Mom said she didn't know if I'd even like it...but, guess what? I LOVED it!
This is an antique egg scale! My hubby says he remembers these from 'back in the day'. Being that we're egg farmers this is the perfect gift for me! I think it is so cool and I love the label on it. It fits in perfect in my kitchen...and, it works! (I had to try it out with several sizes of eggs:)
Thanks're the bestest!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Puppy Paradise...Part 2

The pups are all vaccinated and ready to go. We've had them listed online for just a few hours and we're already getting inquiries and bookings to view. This is the LAST time we plan on doing this so I'll enjoy it while it lasts! Here's a few parting shots of the pups...they are just so darned cute right now.