Hearth & Home

Hearth and Home by Daphne Ross

Cruising with a map well folded

Are you brave enough to cruise the rural countryside without any electronic device directing your route? Are you prepared to appreciate the beautiful scenery, because it is far more interesting than anything a mobile device can show you on a small, hand held screen. There is a bigger picture to the world; there is too much to miss if you keep your head down.

When I was growing up we counted on a large, folded state map to get us to destination A. Yes, it took a little patience to keep it folded neatly, but refolding was part of the travel. As you drove the roads marked on the paper map, you refolded it so to keep your focus on the vicinity, but always with your destination in mind, or on the next fold.

Our mother, the navigator was an excellent map reader. We mapped our way out West, we traveled to New England, and we found our way to the Gulf Coast, all because we followed a paper map. Sometimes we followed a AAA Trip-Tik Travel Planner. You drove the mapped out route, you flipped the page when you got to the edge of that page.

Of course if dad 'the driver' was behind the wheel, he would, on occasion, make an unexpected turn. Tourist billboards were strategically placed along well traveled roads. A giant ball of string we never searched for, but we did find the world's largest prairie dog and were overwhelmed by giant faces of past President's carved into the side of a mountain.
My dad, Bob, drove off the map many times, as did the dad George of the other family we often traveled with cross-country. I remember off-roading the beaten path, looking out my window at the edge of a mountain ravine, in the dark. I remember riding in a four-wheel drive, climbing a straight up muddy hill, but I really remember having to back down and trying again. I can still hear our mother's shouting at their husbands.

Some folks have no sense of direction. While the digital compass in my present vehicle is quite helpful as I make my way around the back roads of Holmes County, I do know the sun rises in the east and it sets in the west. And I do know where to find the sun, I just look up. But if your head is looking down into a small screen you don't know where you are to begin with. Cloudy days may be a bit tricky, prayer does work also.

Try traveling unconnected, because you might miss the world's largest something while trying to find it on your phone.

Help me add recipes to my Fall Time recipe file. Hearth & Home is looking for recipes using these ingredients, especially combining these ingredients: pumpkin, caramel, butterscotch chips, and apples. Mail to: Hearth & Home, 5973 Blachleyville Rd., Wooster, OH, 44691. Emails are always welcome: thewritecook@sssnet.com

Tomato Bread Pudding
(Gail Powell, Homerville)
1 quart jar tomatoes
1/2 of 1 12 ounce loaf of crusty bread, cut into large cubes
1/4 cup red cooking wine
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 to 3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 to 4 tablespoons butter
1/2 to 2/3 cup shredded cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, while heating put bread cubes in oven to heat up. In saucepan, heat tomatoes, cooking wine, basil, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, butter to a simmer, and turn off. After 10 minutes add bread cubes to tomato mixture, along with cheese. Place in a greased casserole and bake for 30 minutes. Please note: If you use a sealed and stored jar of tomatoes, boil 10 minutes before adding other ingredients.

Granola Balls
(Julianna Ringler, Greenwich)
1 (18 ounce) can chunky peanut butter
7 cups oatmeal
1 cup honey
2 1/2 tablespoons vanilla
2 cups raisins or chocolate chips
Mix well and shape in balls. Store in freezer. These are good as lunchbox treats.

No Bake Double Crunch Bars (Julianna Ringler, Greenwich)
4 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cups chopped nuts
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cups butter, melted
1/2 cup honey or corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
Mix all ingredients together. Press into a pan.
Topping:
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup coconut or Rice Krispies
1 cup chocolate chips, melted
Mix and spread on top. Chill. Enjoy!

Puppy Chow
(Amanda Ringler, Greenwich)
9 cups Chex cereal
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Peanut M&Ms, optional
Microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and margarine. Then add vanilla; stir in Chex cereal. Put in bowl and add powdered sugar. Mix well. Peanut M&Ms may be added.

Caramel Popcorn
(Amanda Ringler, Greenwich)
15 cups popped corn
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup light Karo
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon soda
Cook together brown sugar, butter, Karo and salt for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add soda. Pour over popcorn. Stir every 15 minutes while baking. Bake at 200 degrees for 1 hour.

Spud Burger Sandwiches (Amanda Ringler, Greenwich)
1 pound ground beef
1 cup shredded potatoes
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon salt
Dash of pepper
Cheese
Combine meat, potatoes, onions, and seasonings. Shape into patties. Broil until done. Top with cheese and serve on buns. Can be reheated in microwave.

Lemonade
(Amanda Ringler, Greenwich)
1 gallon water, scant
2 cups sugar
2 oranges
8 lemons
Juice the oranges and lemons and mix everything well.

Lunchbox Apple Muffins
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, diced small
1 cup pecans, chopped
2 tablespoons sugar
Line 12 muffin tins with paper liners. Sift sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together. Add flour and sift again. In a bowl combine egg, melted butter and buttermilk. Stir the wet ingredients into dry ones and mix just to combine don't overbeat. Add apples and pecans. Spoon batter into muffin tins to the top. Sprinkle with granulated sugar and bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.

Corny Cornbread Squares
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 cup milk
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup melted butter
2 cups thawed frozen corn kernels

Lightly butter a 9 inch square baking pan. In a mixing bowl combine the dry ingredients: flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar and baking powder; set aside. In another mixing bowl combine the milk, eggs and melted butter and add to dry ingredients. Mix just until combined; fold in the corn kernels. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 400 degrees 20 to 25 minutes.

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