Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Skillet Fried Corn

Finally!  Another recipe from The Farmhouse Skillet!

Today I'm going to show you how I make one of my family's favorite veggie dishes - fried corn.  Now, this is a lot different than the recipes you'll find if you Google "Skillet Fried Corn"where they use bacon and bacon grease along with some cream.  Mine might not be the "right" way to do it, I really don't know.  All I know is, this is what I've been doing for years and this is how my family likes it.

Here's what you'll need:

Corn - fresh is better of course, but frozen works good too
Butter - the amount depends on how much corn you're doing, I used 4 Tbl for a half a bag of corn
Salt - to taste
 Sugar - about 1 tsp or so, depending on taste

I always make mine in a cast iron skillet and I let it get nice and hot over medium heat first.  Then I drop my butter in and let it get bubbly and sizzlin.'  Now you want to make sure your skillet is large enough that whatever amount of corn you're frying can spread out into a mostly single layer.  If the skillet gets over crowded you'll end up steaming it and it's just not the same.  (I learned this from a big family dinner where I wanted perfection.  The Lord knows how to keep me humble.)

If you're using fresh corn, cut it off the cob and scrape off some of the bits and pieces and a lil' cob "juice."  If you're using frozen just dump it in.  Sprinkle your salt and sugar over it and give it a good stir and get it all coated with butter.

Now, just let it fry giving it a stir every once in awhile.  

Previous to this I've always known when it was done just by smell, it'll start to smell like popcorn, but for the sake of you, my lovely readers, I timed it and it took about 15 minutes.

You want it to be nice and golden with bits of brown mixed in.  

You might be tempted to call it done after only 5-6 minutes because at that point it starts smelling all buttery and good and it's even tender by that point, BUT....take your grimy meat hooks off and let it keep cooking.  It might be tender and good but it ain't "fried" yet.  When you start thinkin' you're getting a whiff of popcorn and/or it gets nice and golden with a bit of brown, then you know it's skillet fried!

Hubby came home from work on this particular night and almost swooned (do men swoon?) when he saw 3 of his great loves on the same plate - BBQ pulled pork on homemade hamburger buns, oven fried potatoes, and skillet fried corn.  And sweet tea of course.  No proper Southern meal is complete without it.  So I guess that's actually 4 great loves.
(Recipe for the buns can be found {here}.  I used white bread flour instead of whole wheat.)

As always, if you try it out be sure to come back and let me know what you thought!  
I love to hear feedback.


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Friday, April 19, 2013

Fun Friday Finds #16

How many of you have been missing the Fun Friday Finds posts?  Well, today I'm giving you a lil' fix. : )

The other day on the Facebook page I mentioned that I, and a couple of friends, were going thrifting all day.  We were gone for over 12 hours and visited 8 different shops, including another trip to the Goodwill Outlet.  It was a really fun day!  So today I'm sharing my finds with you.

The flan pan caught my eye at a Goodwill store because I've seen a couple of different cute projects done with them.  It's in really good shape and made in Germany!

I loved the patina of the baking pan.  It's the same depth as a loaf pan, but much wider and I thought it would make a cute container for a centerpiece or some such thing.  : )

I also loved the number stamped in the bottom of it.

This vintage picture frame was a Goodwill Outlet find.  It still has the original advertisement style insert in it!  It's just one of those things that weirdly appeals to me.  I can picture it grouped with other vintage things and displayed as artwork.

I was super excited to find this set of metal measuring cups, and for only $1.49!!  I've been transferring some of my pantry baking supplies into big clear glass jars and just the other day I was wishing I had some more of these to put in the canisters.

I was also on the lookout for some non-vintage stuff and was really happy to get stocked up on some jeans in current size and some in future sizes for my lil' guy, as well as some other clothing items for the kiddos.

The basket of wooden blocks were another Outlet find.  They were scattered all over the bottom of a bin so I grabbed a nearby basket and spent 5 minutes collecting them all.  Since the Outlet charges by weight, these weren't super cheap, but at around $6.50 they were still much cheaper than what I would have paid for them new.

My son spotted the little joystick Nintendo style game thing and just had to have it.  (It didn't have anything at all to do with Mommy feeling nostalgic and wanting it too...not one single bit.)

Swimming goggles for my daughter since she'll be starting her swimming lessons again.

And an adorable little wooden Melissa and Doug Mailbox toy.

It is SO cute!  It has all kinds of little letters and "packages" they can mail, and each one has Velcro on it so they can attach the little stamps to them.  They've been having a lot of fun with it and it was well worth it for only 2.99.

After our big move, Lord willing we plan to add some more youngin's to our brood so I picked up this Eddie Bauer infant travel bed for when the time comes.  : )

The plate things may look weird, but I sure thought they seemed handy enough.  We like to eat outside when the weather is nice, and trying to balance a flimsy paper plate and figure out where to set your cup so it doesn't tip over in the grass is aggravating.  So these little vintage contraptions that hold a plate and a cup seemed mighty useful.

A cute little pair of tennis shoes for my daughter and a pair of boots for me.  I've been wanting a pair of rubber boots (or Wellies as some would call them I guess), not so much for fashion reasons, as just for practical reasons.  Our yard gets SO muddy this time of year and I've been wishing I had a pair.  Plus, once we get settled into our new home we plan to have a farm of sorts so they'll get lots of use.  At only $1.50 I would have bought them if they had been just plain black, the fact that they're super cute is just a huge bonus!

The little wooden box was another Outlet find.  I'm not sure yet what I'll do with it, but I loved the look of it so I'll come up with something.

I was really really excited about the Dresner train case.

The bottom is marked as "Guaranteed Texas Steerhide" and it's in good shape.  I'll be listing this in my Etsy shop.

This last picture of these adorably vintage aqua canisters wasn't from our all day foray, I actually found these the day before at a local thrift shop.  They, too, will be going in the shop.

So that does it for this week's Fun Friday Finds.  Now that the weather is warming up and the sales will be starting again, maybe I'll have some fun things to share again each week (or maybe not every week, since I really should be slowing down on how much I buy since we're moving in 2 months).

If you all have a great thrift store or yard sale find feel free to stop on over and share it on the Facebook page.  I'd love to see it and hear all about it!  And if there's every anything you've been searching for and want me to keep a lookout for you just let me know.  I'm happy to be on the hunt with you.


Friday, April 12, 2013

An Update

Hello again!  Did you think I'd dropped off the face of the earth?  : )  Well, I haven't, I'm still here and I thought I'd drop in and give you an update on what's been going on around The Farmhouse lately.

Last time I posted I told you Hubs and I had a trip to Florida coming up.

The trip went great and I survived being away from my kiddos for 7 days, but just barely.  I don't want to do that again anytime soon, I missed them far too much.

Hubs had two really good prospects for a job, he thinks one of them would have hired him on the spot if he had been done with school, so that was encouraging.  We didn't find a house.  We decided we can't buy right away because we just don't know the area well enough, and it's too soon to look for a rental, so....that part of it will have to wait a bit longer.

We did A LOT of exploring of the area, and lemme tell is horse country down there!  We saw farm after farm just loaded with them.  That's just fine by me.  I've been in love with horses for as long as I can remember.

I saw lots and lots of antique stores throughout the area, one little town had SIX of them in the space of about 1/4 mile!  Towards the end of the week I finally convinced Hubs to pull over and let me peruse a bit.

I snapped a few pictures of neat things I spotted, like this unique Apothecary style cabinet.

I thought this was a really neat industrial style piece, one I've never seen before.  It was a metal filing cabinet on casters, and along the side in raised lettering it said "Greeting Cards."

And the metal plate on the front said, "American Greetings."  I've never seen a filing cabinet made specifically for a greeting card company.  I would love to have such a unique piece, and I think the seller knew it would be a desirable piece since it was priced at $450!

This cabinet made from reclaimed wood caught my eye as well.  I might have to revisit this store later and see if it's still there.  :D

In other happenings around The Farmhouse, I've been making all of our bread for about 2 months now.  I came across a recipe for Amish White Bread and my family loved it, even Hubs who in the past had been kind of "meh" about my other homemade bread attempts.  

At the end of the week, if there's any slices left, I dry them out and run them through the food processor with a bit of Italian seasoning to make my own bread crumbs.

The bread recipe is very versatile and also make delicious cinnamon rolls!

As you can tell, the fam cleaned me out and were wishing for more!  
It also makes pretty decent dinner rolls.

Over the past two years we've slowly been making the transition away from so many processed foods full of preservatives and artificial ingredients and trying to go more homemade (thus the bread).  It's something that started out as just me making the effort, but here lately Hubs has come on board too and has given up his snack cakes, slowed down on the amount of soda he drinks, and drinks more water.  Trust me when I say this is HUGE for him!  The man was practically raised on frozen snacks and Mountain Dew.

My kids eat applesauce 2-3 times a week, so in the effort for more homemade items I tried my hand at making my own.  I used {this recipe}.

It turned out delicious!  The recipe calls for a lemon peel and lemon juice added to the apples, but next time I will probably just do one or the other.  It adds a nice extra layer of flavor, but was just a bit too tart and I had to add in a little extra Stevia to make up for it.

I also made my own peanut butter!  {recipe}
The texture is different than store bought, just a slight bit grittier and a tad more sticky, but it tastes oh so good!  I wasn't sure what the family would think but Boss Man declared he liked it a lot better than store bought!  (Again, huge people, huge!  This man has come a long way!)  : )

And last but not least, I had a really super duper exciting thing happen!  Earlier this week I got an email from the photo editor at the Chicago Tribune asking permission to use this photo of mine of a vintage Calumet baking powder tin!!  It was a product photo I had done for my Etsy shop months ago, and had already sold it but I guess the picture was still out there in Google Image land.  

They were doing an article about how these tins showed up in the movie The Shining and how, apparently, they'll be in an upcoming movie.  The article was being published the next day so I called him right away, got the details worked out, and the next day he emailed a PDF file of the page.

I know it's not huge, not like having a room featured in a magazine spread or anything, but it was still really fun and exciting to know that one of MY photos was published in the CHICAGO TRIBUNE!!

And did you notice, tucked in down there next to the can was my lil' ol' name.  I asked if I could include a website, but unfortunately I couldn't.  Just a name.  But that's okay, it was all still really neat.

So, there's a bit of what's been happening around here.  Pretty soon I'll be starting the process of getting the house packed up, I hope to have Munchkie's Kindergarten year finished up in about another month, and next up on the "homemade items to try" list are ketchup and Velveeta.  
(If you'd like to follow along with the recipes I come across join me over on my Pinterest boards.)

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