Saturday, February 20, 2016

Charity work, scrappy quilts and homemade pop tarts.


Ever since I lost my weight and started to eat cleaner, I've been intrigued with the idea of buying less processed food and making more of our food from scratch.  A few weeks ago this magazine caught my eye and I decided to have fun experimenting with some of the recipes.

In the last few weeks I've made my own english muffins, english muffin bread, and ricotta cheese. I also made the pop tarts pictured on the cover.  

Now, I've never been much of a pop tart fan, but these little gems are delicious. I think I'd be committing copyright infringement if I printed the actual recipe but I will show some pictures of my process.


For the pastry shell, I mixed the dry ingredients and butter in my food processor until it was coarse and crumbly.  I will tell you that I substituted 3/4 C. of fresh ground whole wheat flour for some of the white flour just to make myself feel a little better about making them.  I mean, pop tarts don't exactly fit in with my clean eating principles.


I added all the milk the recipe called for and the dough turned out too wet to work with so I put plenty of flour on board and that got it to the right consistency for rolling.

The nice thing is that it isn't necessary to refrigerate the dough before rolling.




Once the little tarts are layered, I trim the messy edges and crimp them with a fork.  Eight pretty, little hand pies all ready for baking.


Once they are cool, top with a generous drizzle of powdered sugar glaze and they are ready.

Eight little hand pies ready to be devoured. These may not be the healthiest things, but if my family is going to snack on something, I'd rather have it be on something made with ingredients from my own kitchen and not processed, preservative-filled food from a box.

I've made these three times now and they get eaten so fast they never last to the next day.  I took one batch to a Favorite Things Party last week and the ladies loved them.

I used my own homemade freezer jam for the filling and I will give you that recipe.  It's really good.  Honestly, it tastes like fresh strawberries.

Strawberry Freezer Jam
2 1/2 C. Pureed Fresh Strawberries (You can use any fruit you like)
4 C. Sugar
Combine together and let stand for 10 minutes.

1 C. Water
1 Pkg. Pectin
Bring water to a boil.  Add pectin and let boil for 1 full minute.  Add pectin mixture to fruit mixture and stir until it is no longer foamy; about 3 minutes.  Ladle warm mixture into freezer containers and let cool until fully set.  Freeze until ready to use.

This is my latest scraptastic masterpiece.  All the fabric for this quilt came either from my scrap bins or my stash.  I LOVE it!  It's got a definite retro look and feel.  It seems to remind me of a quilt I would have wrapped up in at my grandma's house.  It's next in the queue to be quilted.  Hopefully, I'll be binding it by the end of the week.

Lastly, and not to toot my own horn, but I got a nice little write up  in the local paper.  It has been my privilege to head up the charity committee of the guild I belong to.  I have to say though that while the article focused on me, the whole guild deserves to be recognized.  Without the help of all the ladies in the group, the work would never get done.