Sunday, June 26, 2011

Apple Crumble

This is for Shari, who wanted to know what to do with Granny Smith Apples. This is Joseph's favorite "Apple Pie", as he calls it.  You can also mix McIntosh apples in... but I prefer just using all Granny Smith!


3 pounds Granny Smith Apples
1/4 cup rum
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons flour


1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
8 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Peel, core and slice apples. Place them in a bowl with the rest of the filling ingredients and stir until combined. Place apple mixture into a lightly greased 9 X 9 pan.  Mix together topping ingredients with the exception of the butter. Add butter and mix until crumbly.  Bake for 1 1/2 hours or until golden brown.

This is a 10 on my yum scale!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Gingerbread Cake

Sean used my gingerbread recipe this week to make yummy gingerbread. He used Natural Grapeseed Oil instead of  butter and oil mixed to make it a healthier version.  The boys eat it right as it comes out of the oven, so it doesn't last long. Also see my post on my Gluten Free Ginger cake, if you are gluten-free.

Gingerbread Cake

3/4 cup brown sugar (we vary-- sometimes we use dark, sometimes we use light)

1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup ginger syrup ( we use The Ginger People- see picture)
1/4 cup plus 8 tablespoons Natural Grapeseed Oil
2 large eggs
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda

1 tablespoon ground ginger ( I love OXO  Grind it Ginger - you grind the ginger fresh on the spot!)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup boiling water

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the sugar, molasses, syrup, oil and eggs. Beat until smooth. Stir in flour, baking soda, spices and salt.  Stir in water. Pour batter into greased pan and bake for 30 to 40 minutes.

Half eaten gingerbread cake!
The Ginger People make me happy!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Banana Banana Bread

We're trying the Banana Banana Bread for the first time today. I've never used a mix for Banana Bread before.  This one smells yummy! It has banana flakes and banana powder... all natural.  Sean made it himself. 

He mixed on package of Banana Banana Bread with 2 large eggs, 1/4 cup Butter Grapeseed Oil, 3/4 cup water and he chose to had 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. 

caught Sean in the act of cooking!
Banana Banana Bread
The bread disappeared within minutes of coming out of the oven!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Cherry Almond Scones

This is what we had for breakfast this morning!  I used the Basic Scone Recipe from King Arthur Flour with a variation.  I added almond extract and  FRESH cherries.  Most recipes call for dried fruit, but I use fresh, pitted, diced cherries.I couldn't find their recipe online. This is one of their scone recipes they have online: Scones 

Here's what I did:

3 Cups King Arthur AP flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup powdered buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 cup chopped FRESH cherries
2 Large eggs
2 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 cup milk
8 tablespoons butter (I froze mine and shredded it in a cheese grater)
1 egg beaten with one tablespoon of water.
Coarse sugar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Many recipes call for high baking, then leaving the scones to cook once the oven is turned off.  I just bake them until they are brown so I can put my second batch in (I only have one scone pan). The fresh cherries will give you a slightly wetter dough than you'd get with dry, so if you want to roll your scones, add fewer cherries....

Mix together flour, sugar, buttermilk powder, salt, cherries and baking powder.  Stir in the shredded butter.  In separate bowl, mix eggs, extract and milk.  Add liquid ingredients to the flour mixture. Gently fold until the mixture is moistened. You can then turn out the dough for rolling or you can place it in your scone pan.  I basted the top with the egg butter mixture and sprinkled coarse red sugar on top. I usually use white sugar, but decided to use the red today.  My boys wolfed these down this morning.

Enjoy!  Happy Eating!

Monday, June 13, 2011


Sweet cherries
We love to go cherry picking every year.  We really like to go to Levering Orchard, just north of Mt. Airy, NC. Tart cherries are awesome, but need to be used quickly. They have a higher water content (read: more mushy) than sweet cherry varieties.  The tartness creates a much better jam and pie, in my opinion.  Nothing like a tart cherry pie. Of course you can use sweet cherries in pies, too, but it won't have that classic tang!

Large bowl of sweet cherries
I made jam with the tart cherries right after we arrived home, then I started pitting the rest to freeze.  I find the best way to freeze them it to pit them, place them on a cookie sheet and freeze.  Once frozen, stick them into a freezer bag where they won't stick together because they are already frozen!  I use this method for freezing strawberries, too.   This is important with the tart cherries because they are a lot juicer and will form a huge lump if not frozen individually first.  Then, you can use them straight from the bag to make pies, smoothies or even cherry clafouti. 
Tart Cherries - you can see how juicy they are!
Tart cherry Jam
Pitted tart cherries ready for the freezer

I had to freeze the tart cherries because hubby's favorite pie is tart cherry pie and he is out of town. I don't think it would go over well with my baking his favorite pie while he was out of town!  Tart cherry season only lasts a few weeks, so if you want tart cherries, you've got to pick them fast! Happy eating!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Wild about Pizza!

After a long day of yard work, going to a swimming party and just being exhausted yesterday, we decided to throw a pizza together after the boys (and girl) returned from their TSFL meeting.  Since I didn't have any Perfect Pizza Sauce Blend on hand, I used the Hearty Spaghetti Sauce Blend and had pizza sauce in a few minutes.

1 Can of Tomato Sauce
1 Tablespoon Wildtree Hearty Spaghetti Sauce Blend
1 Teaspoon chopped garlic (for those who love extra garlic)
1 quarter onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon Natural Grapeseed Oil

I sauteed the garlic and onion in the grapeseed oil for a few minutes, then added the tomato sauce and the Hearty Spaghetti blend.  Let it simmer while I made a So Quick and Easy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Mix.  Once the crust was ready, we rolled it out, topped with the sauce, cheese, pepperoni and baked it. It was yummy!  Much better than a frozen pizza!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Spiced Peach Muffins

Finished Spiced Peach Muffins
I love, love, love King Arthur Flour. I have been using their flours for many, many years. I have several of their cookbooks and many of their recipes can be found on-line.  I often alter the recipes.  King Arthur Flour's Spiced Peach Muffins Recipe  calls for vegetable oil and, of course, I used Wildtree Natural Grapeseed Oil!  Instead of All-Purpose flour, I used Organic White Whole Wheat flour and added 1/4 cup extra milk to make up for the fact I was using whole wheat. Lastly, I added one extra teaspoon of cinnamon because I just LOVE cinnamon.  White Whole Wheat has the same nutrition as Red Wheat, but doesn't have the same strong taste. Since I didn't have any dark brown sugar left, I just used light brown sugar.  The dark brown sugar gives it a richer, deeper molasses taste. I sprinkle the top with coarse sugar. 

Oil, Milk and Eggs. Don't you love the color of natural, expeller pressed grapeseed oil!?

In the Mixer
Add the fresh diced (unpeeled) peaches

In the muffin pan!

Almost Like Grandma's Frittata

My grandmother came over from Italy as a small child.  I never met her because she died before I was born, but her recipes were always served at my house.  One of my favorites is frittata. I'm just too lazy to spend the time backing it in the oven, so here's what I do to create the same taste in my frying pan!

Today, I used zucchini from my garden-- an Italian Heirloom zucchini called Lungo Bianco.  I grew them from seed and I have to say, they are yummy!  I sliced  half of a zucchini and a quarter of a small onion.  I sauteed the onion and zucchini in Wildtree's Natural Grapeseed Oil until they were soft.  I added two scrambled eggs, salt, pepper, a few shakes of parmesan cheese with two pinches of Wildtree Hearty Spaghetti Sauce Blend. Scrambled them around until they were cooked and YUM! It tastes just like grandma's frittata!

Zucchini I picked this morning

Finished Almost Like Grandma's Frittata

It isn't as pretty as grandma's, but it sure tastes the same!  Enjoy!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Shrimp and Guacamole with a Twist

Need a low carb alternative to chips? How about shrimp!?  I didn't have any Wildtree Guacamole Seasoning on hand, so I added a few teaspoons of Fiesta Salsa Mix to my mashed avocado instead.  I created a keeper!  YUM!  It adds a bit of spice to my shrimp.  This isn't HCG Diet approved for the first phase, but it is approved for the second phase.  I was craving Avocado and that is why I have such a small amount on my plate! I've got two more weeks of phase I to go!

HCG Diet Approved Shrimp Creole

Jennifer has lost 40 pounds using the HCG Diet (she's my friend and diet companion! I'll share the story after the recipe.) During the first round of the HCG diet, we made this a few times.  We ate this again the other day adding chicken along with the shrimp.

1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
Sautee all of the above for a few minutes until vegetables are tender

Add 1 teaspoon Wildtree Bayou Blend
Add 2 cans Hunt's Petite diced tomatoes and 1/2 cup water 
Simmer for approximately 1/2 hour

Add 1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp
Cook for 5-7 mins until shrimp are cooked

Can be eaten with rice if you are not on the HCG Diet. If you are on the HCG Diet, enjoy as prepared above!

Jennifer and I love to eat!  We love to cook and we can cook some good eats!  Unfortunately, loving to cook and loving to eat can mean extra weight!  This past Lent, we decided to do the HCG Diet as out sacrifice.  Jennifer lost 33 pounds the first round and I lost 27.  We did the 3 weeks of low carb after the main part of the diet was over, then went back to normal eating for 4 weeks before starting the next round of the HCG Diet.  During my son's confirmation party and family visiting, I gained 5 pounds, but am happy to report that I lost that and more in the first week of our second round of the HCG Diet!

I had maintained my weight the first several weeks by doing low-carb during the week and eating what I wanted on the weekends.  I LOVE sugar. I love desserts, so I created sugar-free, low carb recipes from my favorite recipes using all natural Xylitol as the sweetener.  I'll share those as the weeks go on and I get back to the low carb cooking in ernest. Right now, I still have several weeks left on the HCG Diet

Here is a picture of shrimp creole with rice (rice is NOT HCG approved, I just wanted to add a picture) 

Quick HCG Diet Approved Omelet

As I said earlier, I am working on my second round of the HCG Diet.  So far I have lost 30 pounds using the HCG Diet!  Once I get to the second stage (3 weeks of just low carb and not just low carb and low fat!), I can add  whole eggs and CHEESE to this recipe

I made an egg white omelet for lunch today using the Garlic & Herb Blend. It was divine!  Since I am still in the first stage of the diet, I wiped the pan with the  Natural Grapeseed Oil -- just enough to keep the eggs from sticking.  While the pan was coming to temperature, I added salt, pepper and the Garlic and Herb Blend to my eggs, tossed them in the pan to cook.   Looking forward to the second phase and my continued Low-Card maintenance!  Again, this is my second round with the HCG Diet (Miss Utah used it!).   Between the rounds, I maintained my weight by eating low card M-F and allowing myself to eat what I wanted on the weekends.  As the blog progresses, I hope to share more of my HCG Diet Approved Recipes using Wildtree Products and also share my low carb recipes, too.  I've just started building my blog, as you can see by my recipes I posted today. I have Christi working on a very cute blog design, too, and I can't wait to see the new design go live.  If you like my blog, click on her link for more information. She also designed our Family Blog!

Jam Sweet Jam

Every year, we pick various fruits and make jam. This weekend, we are visiting Levering Orchard to pick tart cherries.  I find that tart cherries make the best pies and jams.  Of course, we have picked sweet cherries and made some yummy jams, too.  I'm just partial to tart cherries! One of my favorite dishes to make with cherries is Cherry Clafoutis, if I make it this year, I will certainly share the details.  I'm all about food and probably unusual.  I make just about everything from scratch. My hubby says I am spoiling my boys because they will never find a wife who makes breads, pastries, food all from scratch all without the aid  of a microwave.  Yeah, I hate microwaves.  I think they make food taste funny.  I know many folks like them, and that is okay.  I'm just not a microwaving gal. So, about the jams.

We've already made strawberry jam from three flats of strawberries we picked this year.  Yesterday, however, we bough South Carolina peaches at a stand and I made peach jam.  I used to cook and can jam, but the last several years found that making freezer jam is easier and tastes the same!  One can purchase freezer pectin at many stores.  For my peach jam, I added 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to 3 1/3 cups of diced, fresh peaches.  Then I mixed 4 tablespoons of instant freezer pectin to 1 1/3 cups of sugar.  Stirred in the fruit for three minutes, then let it set in the jar for 30 minutes before freezing.   I followed the same recipe for strawberry jam with the exception of the lemon juice.  I also made strawberry-blackberry jam. YUM.  I can't wait until our blackberries are ripe and we have enough to make straight up blackberry jam. Of course, I have also made lemon curd this year, too.  Nothing quite as yummy as fresh, homemade lemon curd.

Finished Peach Jam
Strawberries that ended up as jam!
What wild tree products go with jam and lemon curd?  Well, it depends on your taste buds. Around here, we like to put jams, jellies and lemon curd on lots of breads, biscuits and muffins!  In fact, you can add a splash of Jam to the Create Your Own Muffin Mix or the Scrumptious Scone Mix, top the Banana Banana Bread with it, fill crepes with it (Gourmet Crepe Mix)  (I even have a special crepe pan! or top you pancakes and biscuits with it. Wildtree has a Butter Milk Pancake Mix and a Buttermilk Biscuit  Mix.   I love the Beer Bread Mixes (you can add any carbonated beverage if the taste of beer scares you!) and we have done more than just dip them in oils.  You can add butter and jams to the finished Beer Bread, too.  Of course, Scrumptious Scones and Pumpkin Quick Bread also like jam spred on top, too!   If you've never made your own jams before... do not be afraid!  Freezer jam is EASY to make and stores in the freezer for up to one year and 4 or so months in the fridge.  Enjoy!

Tortillas, Wraps , Pita Bread, and Lamb Gyros or Chicken Gyros

I love Greek food!  LOVE it.  I love it so much that I even make my own lamb gyro meat! No, I am not kidding.  You have to use ground lamb, grind it until it makes a paste, add your Wildtree Opa! Greek Seasoning Blend to the paste.  Shape the meat paste with seasonings and then place in the oven to bake or you can cook it on a rotisserie to cook.  Once cooked, let it cook for about 10 minutes before slicing.  I use 100% lamb, but others like to use a lamb and beef mixture.  These slices can easily be reheated in a frying pan.  I make Tzatziki sauce using the Wildtree Tzatziki Seasoning Blend.  I like to add a small squirt of extra lemon to my sauce to give it a bit of extra zing.  The Tzatziki sauce can be made several ways.  I have made it using all Greek Yogurt, half Greek yogurt and half sour cream and using all sour cream.  The Greek yogurt gives it an extra bit of zing and tartness.  Add cucumber to your liking. I love cucumber, but hubby doesn't,  so I make some with a little and some with a lot! 

To make your lamb gyros,   make or buy pita bread, spread a layer of Tzatziki sauce over the pita, add slices of lamb prepared from the recipe above and top with lettuce,onion, tomatoes and feta cheese.  ENJOY!  My Tortilla, Wraps and Pita Bread Recipes can be found at this link:  Pattie's Tortillas, Pitas and Wraps

For chicken Gyros, I sautee white breasts of chicken cut into with natural strips grapeseed oil and add the Opa! Greek Seasoning Blend. Follow the same instructions for putting together the chicken gyro as above for the lamb.  Next time I make this, I will have to take pictures to share.  We had lamb Gyros two weeks ago.... we enjoy making gyros!

Gluten-Free Brownies

Again, I am a baking snob, so just any old gluten-free brownies would not do!  I wanted a recipe that tasted like REAL, made with flour brownies!  This is the closest I could come.  You can view my Gluten-Free Brownie recipe at this link:  Pattie's Gluten-Free Brownie Recipe

Try these topped with Heavenly Chocolate Mousse for a divine gluten-free dessert creation! (Wildtree's Heavenly Chocolate Mousse is  gluten-free! )

Gluten-Free Graham Crackers

We have close family friends with Gluten Intolerance. Over the years, I have learned to bake and cook gluten-free!  I published an article with my Gluten-Free Graham Cracker Recipe back in 2008 that can be viewed here:  Gluten-Free Graham Crackers Recipe

Enjoy these Gluten-Free crackers with your S'Mores or with Wildtree's Very Berry Cheesecake Blend. They can be crumbled to make a pie crust, too!  Enjoy!

Gluten-Free White Cake

In 2009, I wanted to make a Gluten-Free cake, but it had to be based on my very favorite white cake of all time, a King Arthur Flour recipe.  You see, I am a baking snob.  I use flour from two places, Bob's Red Mill and King Arthur Flour.  All of their wheat comes from the United States and they have specialty flours for baking snobs like me.  I make my own pasta, I bake from scratch..... and until Wildtree, never used prepared mixes (save a few from Bob's or KA).  I am very particular about my food.  It must be ALL natural and contain no fillers.

You can view my Gluten-Free White Cake recipe at this link:  Gluten Free White Cake  It has passed the taste test of our gluten-free friends!

The Art of Making Hamburger and Hot Dog Buns

Back in 2008, I published an article on how to make your own Hot Dog and Hamburger buns that can be viewed here:  The Art of making Hamburger and Hot Dog Buns  Once you make your own, it is hard to eat store bought buns!  Enjoy!

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cake

Here is another one of my recipes I published.  Gluten-Free Gingerbread.  If you like a lot of ginger, this one has some bite!  You can tone it down by adding less ginger.  To read my recipe, go to this link: Gluten-Free Gingerbread

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Quick Fix

I needed to fix myself an early dinner before heading out the door tonight.  Tonight, I took a small filet and rubbed it with  Rancher Steak Rub.  Threw it on the George and it is yummy!  I steamed asparagus using the Rancher Steak Rub, too!   Just because you have to rush, doesn't mean the food can't taste great, too! The best part is that this fits in with the HCG diet.  I have lost 30 pounds!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Tonight, I mixed up a bit of the Jamaican Jerk Seasoning blend with water and drizzled it on slices of the pork loin from yesterday.  It was delicious!  A simple way to spice up leftovers.  It was wonderful last night, too!

Today was definitely a leftover day.... Friday, the dishwasher guy came to fix my dishwasher (2 weeks without a dishwasher!) and, unfortunately, he made a mistake when hooking it back up.  It leaked and ruined my wood flooring.  I knew it was leaking from the outside because I have a Bosch that will shut the water off when there is a leak on the inside.  Luckily, we have extra wood flooring!  I see tile in my future.  Tomorrow will be a better cooking day.  Today, I was thankful for the leftover pork!   Happy eating!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Jamaican Jerk Pork & Rancher Steak Rub

Pictures will be here soon!  In the future, I hope to make video tutorials and picture tutorials (hey, I just started the blog about an hour ago and the pork was already in the oven! ~laughter~) This morning, I placed the dry Jamaican Jerk Seasoning blend on the pork loin and placed it in a preheated 225 degree oven.  A few hours later, I turned up the heat to 275 degrees while I mixed together natural grapeseed oil and more Jamaican Jerk seasoning together.  I basted the pork loin with this mixture and I have to tell you that the smell is heavenly!

Two hours later, I increased the heat to 350 degrees and will let the loin bake, covered, until nice and tender. Jennifer (you will see her recipes posted here from time to time) is coming over for dinner tonight and bringing a salad.  I'm going to make roasted potatoes using one of the Wildtree blends (I'll update later as this is a masterpiece in progress) and a veggie. 

Sean, who has recently turned 15, loves steak.  He likes to grill it on the George.  Today for lunch, he rubbed his steak with natural grapeseed oil, then rubbed in the Rancher Steak Rub onto each side before grilling.  It was delicious.

Joseph started his meal off with dipping oil and bread. He is addicted.  He experimented with the Roasted Garlic Grapeseed oil, the Natural Grapeseed oil and the Basil Pesto Grapeseed Oil. His favorite was Roasted Garlic Grapeseed Oil with a bit of fresh cracked pepper.  He is only 13 and already becoming a food snob like me!

Happy Eating!

I finally decided to take the leap!  I'm a Wildtree Consultant now! I have been using their products for many months now and love them. We are always searching for healthy, natural spices and sauces.  Having two kids with chronic healthcare needs makes this a must.   I created this blog to share my favorite recipes and how we use Wildtree in our day to day life.   I love blogging and am excited to share my passion for cooking!