Homemade German Spaetzle

Homemade German Spaetzle

While traveling over to Germany I fell in love with a dish call Spaetzle or “German cheese noodle casserole”. Pretty much everywhere we went in Germany we would find Spaetzle on the menu and of course at every restaurant we went to I order this as a side dish. One of the ways that I love making this dish at home is in a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Here is a simple recipe that I will share with you to try.

Here is a list of what you will need;

  • 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of butter
  • 2 medium onions sliced up
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup of water
  • ¼ teaspoon of grated nutmeg
  • 4 ounces of Gruyere cheese
  • Breadcrumbs


  • In a medium saucepan heat together the butter and oil on medium heat. Turn heat to low and add the onions, stir every so often and let them cook for about an hour.
  • Set the caramelized onions aside for now.
  • Put a large pot of water on the stove and bring it to a boil.
  • Whisk together flour and salt in a medium bowl. In a small bowl beat eggs with the ½ cup of water and add flour & salt mixture.
  • Beat for several minutes until the dough is smooth, set aside for around 10 minutes. Beat again.
  • Place ½ of dough in colander and place over the boiling water. Push the dough through the colander back and forth and the dough will drop into the water.
  • The dough strips will drop to the bottom of the pot and then they will rise to the top. Once they rise let them sit in the water for another two to three minutes.
  • Scoop out the spaetzle from the water and rinse in hot water and set aside.
  • Continue the same procedure with the second half of the dough in the boiling water.
  • Butter a 2 quart casserole dish.
  • Sprinkle breadcrumbs around the casserole dish, these will stick to the buttered bottom and side of the casserole dish.
  • Take the cooked spaetzle noodles and add them to the caramelized onions along with the grated nutmeg and grated cheese. Mix all together.
  • Spoon mixture into casserole dish and sprinkle more of the grated cheese on top of the noodles.
  • Cover with foil and bake twenty minutes at 350 degrees, then uncover and bake for another fifteen minutes.
  • At our home we like our cheese brown, we will cook on broil for another five to ten minutes.

I hope you like this recipe and if you have any variations we would love to hear from you.

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Posted by Tom in Recipes
Pumpkin Bread Recipe

Pumpkin Bread Recipe


Awesome Pumpkin Bread Recipe With Canned Pumpkin

Nothing warms the soul than fresh baked bread, especially on those cold winter days. The smell floats through the house and everyone comes running to grab a fresh slice of homemade bread when it first comes out of the oven. In the fall I love to cook homemade pumpkin bread. I do not take the time to use fresh pumpkin, I cheat and use canned pumpkin instead. Now some of you may call me a trader for using canned pumpkin, if I have the time to process my own pumpkin puree then I will, but most of the time I do not have the free time so I will use canned pumpkin instead.


We all know that time saved in the preparation of a meal is time better spent enjoying the process or the company of your family or guests.

This recipe makes one large baking pan’s worth. You can cook it in a couple of smaller pans if you wish. The ingredients below makes roughly two regular sized loaves.


10 oz. pumpkin puree (canned)

2 eggs (medium)

2/3 cup vegetable oil

1 cup water

2 cups sugar

2 1/2 cup flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Preparation Instructions:

1. Preheat your oven to 350 F (That’s 180 C).

2. Lightly grease your baking pan(s), and sprinkle a light coat of flour on top.

3. Combine eggs, vegetable oil, sugar and pumpkin puree in a bowl and mix until they’re completely blended together.

4. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt and the spices.

5. Mix all the ingredients together into one larger bowl using a whisk.

6. Pour your batter into your greased and floured baking pan.

7. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 F. Inspect the bread in about 35 minutes. Once you can poke it with a toothpick without anything sticking to the toothpick, your bread is finished.

But of course who can resist the urge to try a piece of this delicious bread right when you pull it out of the oven. Now no one needs to know that you did not use fresh pumpkin and cheated a little by using store bought canned pumpkin. Your guest wont know unless you tell them, you secret is safe with me.



Posted by Tom in Recipes
Easy To Make Homemade French Fries

Easy To Make Homemade French Fries

Homemade French Fries

During this time of year grilling and picnic season is just starting to take which means hamburgers, chicken and other forms of meat will be grilled and what goes better than a big plate of French fries.

Stores are stocking up on bags of frozen French fries but nothing taste better than good ole homemade fries. Store bought fries have all sorts of chemicals and additives added to the potatoes in order to make them last while sitting in the freezer waiting to be purchased. Wouldn’t you rather know what your family is eating and take a few extra minutes and make your own French fries. For my family we love going out to the garden and dig up some fresh potatoes and slice them into our own homemade fries.

What potatoes work best?

This is an age old question that has been kicked around for generations. For many people they use the classic russet potato while others prefer to use the popular red potatoes. For us we like using the Yukon Gold potatoes for making our own fries. Another option to try that I love is using sweet potatoes, these make wonderful tasting French fries.

Bake or deep fry?

Another question that gets bounced around is, what is best baked or deep fried French Fries. I personally love eating fries that I have just pulled out of the deep fryer but my body does not like this. I am over weight and have high cholesterol and high blood pressure so for my I only eat French fries that are baked. Baked fries are healthier and they are tasty and crispy just like fried fries but they are not dripping with grease.

Cooking and Seasoning Fries

After you either have bought the potatoes or dug them out of the garden all you really need to do is wash them thoroughly and slice them with a potato slicer. Once this is done either put them in hot grease or oil that is preheated to 375 degrees and cook them till they are golden brown. Or layer the sliced fries on a cookie sheet and brush them with oil. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and bake for around 20 minutes. Once you take them out of the fryer or oven season them with salt or if you have some special mixture of seasoning then this is the best time to season the fries.


French Fries are an all American tradition especially when we have backyard BBQ’s and parties. Nothing can beat the taste of all natural homemade French fries that are served with your favorite cut of meat.

Do you and your family make your own French fries or do you still purchase them frozen from the store? We would love to hear from you.

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Posted by Tom in Recipes
Tres Leches Cake Recipe

Tres Leches Cake Recipe

Tres Leches Cake

Tres Leches cake is popular in Latin America and gaining popularity in the US. The origins of the tres leches are disputed, and are usually attributed to Mexico or Ecuador, the two places where it appeared earliest. Mexico does, however, appear to have had recipes very similar to that of the tres leches, which probably led to the now famous dessert being created there, which then possibly migrated to Nicaragua.

A Tres leches cake, or Pastel de Tres leches (Spanish, “Three milk cake”), is a sponge cake-in some recipes, a butter cake-soaked in three kinds of milk: evaporated milk, condensed milk, and either whole milk or cream. When butter is not used, the tres leches is a very light cake, with many air bubbles. This distinct texture is why it does not have a soggy consistency, despite being soaked in a mixture of three types of milk.

Following the same recipe for the cake, but soaking it in a mixture of water, rum or brandy, and sugar, it is called “pastel borracho” (drunken cake). It is popular throughout Central America in this form.

In the Caribbean, cream of coconut is occasionally used instead of condensed milk. As in the pastel borracho, rum is sometimes added.

In addition, fruit or nuts are added in some recipes, as well as many other kinds of alcohol. Cherries are most commonly used as decoration, but other fruits or berries are sometimes used instead.

At some restaurants in Texas and Florida, the addition of cajeta creates what is known as a cuatro leches cake.

Tres Leches Cake

By Ingrid Hoffman From the Food Network


  • 1 pound cake, loaf-style
  • 6 ounces evaporated milk
  • 8 ounces heavy whipping cream
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Chocolate covered candies, all in 1 color (recommended: M&M’s)
  • 1/2 cup crushed skittles


With a fork, punch some holes in the cake still in its loaf pan.In a medium saucepan, mix the 3 milks and heat over low heat. When the milk mixture is hot, remove it from the stove.

Pour the milk mixture slowly over the cake, being sure to fill all the holes. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes. Whip the heavy cream slowly adding sugar until soft peaks form. When the cake chilled, cover the cake with whipped cream. Using the chocolate covered candies and skittles, craft out a design of your own.



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Posted by Tom in Recipes
Italian One Pot Recipe

Italian One Pot Recipe

I personally love one pot recipes. Just dump all the ingredients in a pot and walk away, cannot get much easier than that. This recipe is called Italian Wonderpot which can be made by almost anyone. I came across this recipe many years ago and my variation is a little different than the recipe I ran into on Pinterest the other day. That is what is nice about this dish is you can mix or match in order to make your own variations.

I personally like using fresh herbs and ingredients when I make my recipe but if you don’t have fresh herbs store bought will work just fine. The main key is to not add water to the recipe. When cooking all the ingredients in the vegetable broth will create its own moisture which will cook the pasta.  The starch in the pasta will thicken the liquid into a sauce.

This is a great inexpensive recipe which is quick to make and tasty for the whole family.

For complete instructions go to One Pot Wonderpot

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Posted by Tom in Recipes
Make Your Own Pemmican Recipe

Make Your Own Pemmican Recipe

Pemmican for emergencies

Probably a majority of you have never heard of pemmican, this food was created by the Native American Indians and then it was discovered by the European explorers that settled this land. When it was first discovered by hunters and trappers it was commodity that was in high demand. The reason it was sought after was because Pemmican was great for traveling and it was easy to store for the cold hard winters.

The idea behind pemmican is to make sure that the meat is separate from the fat, some people call this rendering the fat from the meat. Once this is done the pemmican be stored without refrigeration in airtight containers and if done correctly it can be stored for years.

Steps for making your own pemmican

  1. Preheat your oven to the lowest temperature setting. While this is being done trim off all the fat from the meat and slice the meat as thin as you possibly can. Once sliced place the strips of meat on the oven rack and place in the oven. If you are looking for the meat to last a long time add a layer of salt to the meat. Once the meat is dry from the oven you will be able to crack the meat when you bend the pieces. Basically you are dehydrating the meat. Lean meat should be dehydrated somewhere between 100 – 115 degrees.
  2. Grind the meat is the next step. You will need a food processor or a good blender in order to do this. You will want to grind the meat to a powder. You may want to mix in nuts or dried fruit into the meat at this time. Just remember that if you do this it will reduce the shelf life of the meat.
  3. Render the fat. Take the cut off fat from the meat, or take pork lard and heat it on the stove in a pot or put it in a slow cooker and cook for several hours on low. Stir occasionally and keep cooking until the fat stops bubbling. Take the liquid and pour through a mesh strainer.
  4. Add the liquid fat. At this time slowly add one part fat to two parts meat and mix thoroughly. Do not use to much liquid fat as this could cause the meat to go rancid, the key is to mix just enough to moisten the mixture.
  5. Form the mixture. The way that I form my pemmican is to spread the mixture in a 9×13 casserole dish about the same thickness across the bottom of the dish. Let the mixture get firm and cut into bar size pieces. Some people like to take the mixture and form it into ball shapes. Taste the pemmican and if needed you may add salt to the bars or balls.
  6. Storage is easy. Once the bars are cut place them in airtight containers and store them in a cool, dark and dry location. If you prefer to store them in the freezer you can use storage freezer bags.

How much easier can it be. If you choose to make your own pemmican let us know how it went. If you have other options for your recipe feel free to add them in the comment section below.

Thanks for reading! Remember to like us on Facebook and Pinterest for daily updates.

Posted by Tom in Off The Grid, Recipes
Homemade Mosquito Repellent That Works

Homemade Mosquito Repellent That Works

Homemade Mosquito Repellent Recipe

Here in Florida families are outside all year long. We want to enjoy the beauty of the lovely weather that Florida offers. There is an enemy that we all battle and some of us battle more than others and that is the disease carrying mosquito. The worst thing for me is that I love the outdoors and my body is a mosquito magnet, if there is a mosquito within 25 miles I am sure that it will find me and suck my blood.

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Posted by Tom in gardening, Homestead, Recipes
Growing Sweet Potatoes For Year Around Harvest

Growing Sweet Potatoes For Year Around Harvest

Growing sweet potatoes year around

Either in a garden or in a pot on your patio sweet potatoes are a wonderful tasting tuber that also adds beauty to your landscape with it’s foliage and flowers.

Sweet potatoes are grown in sunny locations in a garden with other vegetables or grow easily in a container. Sweet potatoes are grown worldwide and sometimes they are called yams This lovely root is full of rich and nutritious vitamins A and C and also contains many rich minerals that are good for your health. The type grown in most urban gardens is the Centennial or Georgia Jet variety.


There are many uses for sweet potatoes, of course they are very popular in fall for Thanksgiving Dinner. But there are hundreds of wonderful recipes on the web for this wonderful tasting and healthy tuber. At the bottom of this page I have listed a few web sites that will direct you to some of my favorite recipes.

Here is a great website that will help you in growing your own sweet potatoes: Click Here


Here are a couple of web sites for great sweet potato recipes:

25 Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes

32 Wonderful Country Sweet Potato Recipes

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Posted by Tom in gardening, Recipes
Old Fashion Simple Bread Recipe

Old Fashion Simple Bread Recipe

Old Fashion Simple Bread Recipe

Many years ago I remember my mother baking some of the best smelling bread that filled the house with the smell of love. Not to many years ago we had bread machines and mixes that filled everyone’s kitchen, today I never find anyone making bread like my mother use to make.

I found this wonderful bread recipe on the internet. When I made my first loaf it brought a tear to my eye remembering my mother in the kitchen making homemade bread.

This recipe is simple and easy to make, most anyone can make this and enjoy fresh natural homemade bread.

5 Simple Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups flour (you’ll add more as you knead the bread)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  • extra virgin olive oil


In a large bowl add the flour, salt, and yeast. Mix through.

Add the water and stir into a shaggy dough.

Using your hands, in the bowl, knead the dough; adding a tablespoon of flour more at a time to help you continue to knead. About an extra 3 – 4 tablespoons. Knead for 3-4 minutes. The dough should remain light, and sticky.

Once the dough is holding together well and still feels sticky, tacky, yet firm, add a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil to the dough and shape into a tight ball. (The extra virgin olive oil will give flavor and prevent the dough from sticking to your hands.)

Place the dough into a clean, oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, then a cloth towel, and allow to rise for one hour.

Once the dough has doubled, carefully, remove the dough from the bowl onto a floured counter making sure to not compress it. You do not want to release all of its gasses

With floured hands, sprinkle a bit of flour onto the dough and shape it as demonstrated in the video into a tight ball.

Place it on top of parchment paper, on a cookie sheet or cutting board, and score the top with a sharp knife or razor blade. With a brush, oil the top and sprinkle additional flour on top to get that nice rustic look.

Cover with plastic wrap and a towel for an additional 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 500F with a pizza stone inside.

After the 20 minutes transfer the bowl with the parchment paper to the pizza stone in the oven.

Slide from one surface to the other and bake for 10 minutes at 500F.

After the 10 minutes, lower the oven temperature to 350F and bake an additional 25 minutes.

Once done, remove the bread with the parchment paper to a cooling rack.

Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing. If you slice the bread before it’s completely cooled, the inside will not be fully done

Enjoy the taste and the aroma!


Posted by Tom in Recipes
Homemade Ketchup Recipe

Homemade Ketchup Recipe

Homemade Ketchup Recipe.

When it comes to eating healthier or stock piling food away for future use ketchup is one of those foods you can never have enough of. My wife and myself put ketchup on most of our foods, the issue is that most commercial ketchup’s that you purchase at the store is loaded with sugars and other ingredients that are not good for your health.

Taking ketchup out of our diet is not an option my wife or I are about to do. In order to still keep ketchup on the menu we had to come up with an alternative that was healthier for us and that was to make our own. I started looking online and doing some trial and error ideas that sounded good I finally came up with a recipe that taste and looks like store bought ketchup. The items are store bought or taken from your pantry but overall it is much healthier than the ketchup in the bottle.


7 oz pure tomato paste

2 tbsp raw honey

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/8 tsp allspice

1/4 tsp onion granules

1/8 tsp ground cloves

2 tbsp of raw apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup of water


Total Prep Time: 5 – 10 minuets

Mix together by hand all the ingredients but not the water yet in a large bowl. After everything is mixed slowly add was until you reach a happy consistency. Refrigerate after mixing and keep refrigerated.

Posted by Tom in Recipes