Monday, July 7, 2014

Waste Not, Want Not - Dehydrating Watermelon

Waste not want not… a quote often used by dear ol’ Dad.
I’m sure a few of us can recall those childhood days when an uneaten lunch plate magically reappeared at supper time... Eventually the offending dish would be forced down, or you would sit crossing your fingers, hoping Mom would take pity on you and sneak it away… Good ol' Ma!
Even though we may have a few sour memories associated with “waste not want not,” it’s not all bad - I promise! Dehydrating watermelon is easy and a great way to cut back on waste.
Did I mention it’s tasty too?

How I break down watermelon:
Cut it in half (lengthwise on the above photo)
Cut one inch thick slices
Slice rind away - leaving a large square section of melon intact
Stack up those squares and make 3 equal sized slices

(Don't waste those discarded pieces - nibble away or feed your chickens!)
Place hand on each stack, using a sharp knife, slice each piece into 1/4 inch thickness
Place in your dehydrator 135 degrees F.
The thickness of your strips will determine how long - approximately 12 hours
Today I sprinkled on Himalayan Pink Salt - this is optional
The final product... it wont last long!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

A Taste of Home


Old Settler Beans:

These beans are always a hit – always! The original recipe comes from a 1983 cookbook printed by my hometown Extension Club. Marcie (or Marso as my Dad calls her - he is the king of nicknaming people whether they like it or not,) submitted several recipes and each one is finger lickin’ good!

I have adapted it a bit over the years and here it is:

 1 lb. hamburger
1 pkg. bacon, diced
1 med. onion, diced
1 small can green chilies
1 ½ tsp. Liquid Smoke
2 tsp. molasses
¼ c. barbecue sauce
¼ c. ketchup
½ c. sugar
½ c. brown sugar
1 tsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. pepper
1 tsp. salt
28 oz. Bushes baked beans
15oz. can kidney beans
3 - 15oz. pork and beans
You can use all pork and beans or any combination of beans you like.

Brown hamburger, onion and green chilies. Brown diced bacon – don’t be hasty when draining your bacon grease, save a bit to add to the pot yum yum!

Add all ingredients to a large pot, give a good stir… careful now don’t mush up your beans! Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes or so. Typically I make this a day before I need it, thus I toss it in a crock pot and chill in fridge with lid off. If you want it right away, bake at 350 for an hour or so (until it is bubbly) or right to the crockpot works too.