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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Recipes from the Garden

The garden is fading quickly and if you have tomatoes in your garden to use,
here is great recipe from Jodi Gorham:

Need something to do with a bumper crop of tomatoes? Try making jam. It sounds weird, but it's tasty, easy to make, and relatively inexpensive. My kids eat this jam and like it, of course I let them believe that it's Raspberry Jam; they have no idea that it's mostly tomatoes. has some recipes that are similar to this one (Budget Berry Jam and Green Tomato Raspberry Jam) that call for green tomatoes. That might be interesting to try too. Happy jamming!
Tomato Jam
4 C peeled tomatoes in a small dice
1 Tbsp lemon juice
4 C sugar
1 large box raspberry Jello
To make peeling the tomatoes easier, put 2 or 3 tomatoes in very hot water for about one minute so that the peel will just pull off:

Boil for a minute until you see the peel split.

The tomato peel will slip off easily at this point.

Take the hard core out of the peeled tomatoes (and the seeds if you want). You'll end up mainly using the outside flesh of the tomatoes. Dice the tomatoes. Stir together all ingredients but the Jello. Boil for 20 minutes. Take mixture off of the heat and stir in Jello. Stir until dissolved. Pour jam into hot jars and seal. Water bath them in boiling water (water should cover the tops of the jars by about 1 inch) for 15 minutes.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Colonial Gingerbread

This gingerbread is so moist and delicious, your family won't even know it's good for them! It was originally sliced and served warm with butter at lunch or dinner. Top with whipped cream for dessert!


3 cups whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1-1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 cup butter or shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup boiling water
1 cup molasses


Sift together first 7 ingredients; set aside.

In large bowl using mixer at medium speed, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs; beat until well blended.

In small bowl, dissolve baking soda in boiling water. Stir in molasses.

Using mixer at medium speed, beat in dry ingredients alternately with molasses mixture until well blended. This is typically done by starting and ending with the dry ingredients:
  • Start with 1/3 of the dry ingredients
  • Then half of the molasses mixture
  • Then 1/3 of the dry
  • Then the rest of the molasses mixture
  • Then the rest of the dry

Pour batter into greased cake pan, 13 x 9 x 2 inches. Mine happens to be a round cake pan that has the same capacity as a 9 x 13 pan. (Mmmm! I think I want to lick that spoon!)

Bake in a 350 degree oven, 45 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack. Makes 16 servings.

Hearts and Hands

This is a message from Linda Loveland, head of 2010 Hearts and Hands:


Walmart has backpacks on sale for $5.00 each, these include character ones (heros, transformers, princesses, icarly, etc.); they also have smaller ones (still large enough to hold notebooks) for $3.00 each.

Thank you!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Soup Recipes
These recipes were served at our meal before the
Women's Broadcast.
2 tsps. chicken soup base
3 cups chicken soup stock
2 cups chopped carrots
2 cups chopped celery
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 can (about 10 ounces) cream of chicken soup
1/4 cup evaporated milk or 1/2 cup whole milk
2 cups cooked diced chicken
2 1/2 ounces (aout 4 cups) cooked noodles
salt and pepper to taste
Heat chicken soup base and stock together.Add carrots, celery, and onions, and simmeruntil vegetables are tender. Add cream of chicken soup and milk. Thicken with roux as desired, then add cooked chicken and noodles. Add salt and pepper, and taste to correctseasonings. Makes about 2 1/2 quarts, or10 one-cup servings.
recipe from Lion House Recipes
Black Bean Pumpkin Soup
three 15 1/2 ounce cans black beans (about 4 1/2 cups), rinsed and drained
1 cup drained canned tomatoes, chopped
1 1/4 cups chopped onion
1/2 cup minced shallot
4 garlic cloves minced
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
4 cups beef broth
a 16-ounce can pumpkin pureé (about 1 1/2 cups)
3 to 4 tablespoons lime juice (optional)
Garnish: sour cream and coarsely chopped lightly toasted pumpkin seeds
Preparation:In a food processor coarsely pureé beans and tomatoes. In a 6-quart heavy kettle cook onion, shallot, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper in butter over moderate heat, stirring, until onion is softened and beginning to brown. Stir in bean pureé. Stir in broth and pumpkin until combined and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 25 minutes, or until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Just before serving, add lime juice and simmer soup, stirring, until heated through. Season soup with salt and pepper.
Serve soup garnished with sour cream and toasted pumpkin seeds.
Paula Deen's Taco Soup
2 pounds ground beef
2 cups diced onions
2 (15 1/2-ounce) cans pinto beans
1 (15 1/2-ounce) can pink kidney beans
1 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can tomatoes with chiles
2 (4 1/2-ounce) cans diced green chiles
1 (4.6-ounce) can black olives, drained and sliced, optional
1/2 cup green olives, sliced, optional
1 (1 1/4-ounce) package taco seasoning mix
1 (1-ounce) package ranch salad dressing
Corn chips, for serving
Sour cream, for garnish
Grated cheese
, for garnish
Chopped green onions, for garnish
Pickled jalapenos, for garnish
Brown the ground beef and onions in a large skillet; drain the excess fat, then transfer the browned beef and onions to a large slow cooker or a stockpot. Add the beans, corn, tomatoes, green chiles, black olives, green olives, taco seasoning, and ranch dressing mix, and cook in a slow cooker on low for 6 to 8 hours or simmer over low heat for about 1 hour in a pot on the stove. To serve, place a few corn chips in each bowl and ladle soup over them. Top with sour cream, cheese, green onions and jalapenos.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Great Exercise Group - All are welcome!

Hilltop Ward has a great little exercise group going on. Sister Chelsy Hooper is the leader of the group. For those of you who don't know Chelsy, she's a fitness expert, an exercise guru, and a major pain in the patella!! I can tell you she's whipping me into shape! She has a degree in Human Performance from Weber State University and has worked as a personal trainer at 24-Hour Fitness.

The exercise group meets twice a week: Tuesday and Thursday from 9-10 a.m. in the Stake Center gym. In November we'll be moving to the Wicks Lane Chapel, same times. Regular attenders of the group are (so far) from Hilltop Ward, Alkali Creek Ward, Lake Hills Ward, and Skyview Ward. Ages range from 20s to 50+. All are welcome! Children are welcome as well. Sometimes moms actually run up and down the gym carrying their little ones, or do crunches with a baby helping them keep their core tight by banging on their tummy. It's all good!

Chelsy has recently started blogging about our exercise group, so if you miss a day or are out of town, you can log in and see what exercises you missed - and do them, of course!

Click here to check out her blog!

She's also collecting links to fitness articles and lots of fitness tidbits and information!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Chocolate Cherry Bars

DISCLAIMER: This is not a diet-friendly recipe. If you are trying to be good and strong, just back away from the computer!


24 oz cocktail peanuts, chopped fine
1-1/2 cups chunky peanut butter
2 (12 oz) pkg chocolate chips
2 cans Betty Crocker cherry frosting*
48 large marshmallows


Melt 3/4 cups peanut butter with 1 pkg of chocolate chips.

Stir in 12 oz of the chopped peanuts.

Spread in extra large, lightly greased cookie sheet.

Stick in freezer while you prepare the next layer.

Melt marshmallows and stir in frosting.

Spread on top of chocolate layer and put back in freezer while you make the next layer.

Repeat first layer.

Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 10 to 20 minutes and serve. If you’re going to be serving much later, just put in fridge.

*HOMEMADE CHERRY FROSTING (much yummier than canned)


6 cups powdered sugar
1 cup butter
¼ cup milk
1 t cherry flavoring
½ t red food coloring (optional – cherry flavoring does have some red in it)


Mix powdered sugar, butter and milk together with a hand mixer, being careful at first that powdered sugar doesn’t become airborne. Adjust by adding more milk a little at a time if too dry or adding more powdered sugar if too wet. (If the frosting is too wet, the bars will be very, very gooey at room temperature. See first frosting picture above for perfect consistency - smooth but thick enough to hold its shape.) When consistency is as desired, beat in cherry extract and food coloring.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Exercising During Pregnancy

ust because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean that exercising has to stop; the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states:

“Healthy women should get at least two and one half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity a week during pregnancy and the time after delivery, preferably spread through the week. Pregnant women who habitually engage in vigorous aerobic activity or who are highly active can continue during pregnancy and the time after delivery, provided they remain healthy and discuss with their health care provider how and when activity should be adjusted over time.”

Some Benefits of Exercise:
  • Helps reduce backaches, constipation, bloating, and swelling
  • May help prevent or treat gestational diabetes
  • Increases your energy
  • Improves your mood
  • Improves your posture
  • Promotes muscle tone, strength, and endurance
  • Helps you sleep better
  • May decrease labor time and difficulty of labor

Sanctioned Guidelines for Exercising During Pregnancy for Otherwise Healthy Women (Found in Exercising Through Your Pregnancy by James Clapp M.D.)
  • Regular, moderate intensity and duration exercise sessions are preferable.
  • Recommended exercises include stretching, stationary cycling, swimming, and walking. Other types are either contraindicated (not recommended) or require modification.
  • Avoid jerky, bouncy, and wide range of motion movements and exercises that involve straining, jumping, or sudden changes in direction.
  • Don’t exercise lying on the back after the fourth month.
  • Five-minute periods of warm-up and cool-down stretching are recommended, but don’t stretch to the point of maximal resistance.
  • Women with sedentary lifestyles should begin with short-duration, low-intensity activity and increase gradually.
  • Stop exercise when unusually fatigued; stop and consult a physician if any unusual symptoms occur. i.e.: Vaginal bleeding, dizziness or feeling faint, increased shortness of breath, chest pain, headache, muscle weakness, calf pain or swelling, uterine contractions, decreased fetal movement, or fluid leaking from the vagina.
  • Increase caloric intake to cover the demands of the exercise and take fluids liberally before, during and after exercise.
  • Avoid environments with excessive heat and humidity when you exercise.

Pregnancy is a special time for the mother to take extra care of herself, not just for her but now for the new addition as well. Exercise is an essential part of being healthy. Remember an essential rule when in doubt of an exercise: Use your gut instinct to judge and it usually won’t lead you astray. Be smart but don’t be afraid to challenge yourself or add a little excitement into your exercise routine.

If you have any special conditions or concerns please communicate with your doctor to find the best choice for you and your baby. Happy exercising! :)

Here are some video clips of sample exercises you can do when you're pregnant (or not so pregnant). Do each activity for one minute, then switch to another, then switch back.

PLEASE NOTE: Our model, Chelsy, is very fit. She was doing a high level of exercise before her pregnancy and so can continue at a higher rate during her pregnancy. Slow down and moderate these exercises to suit your level!

FOOTBALL FEET: Imagine you are stepping into tires in an obstacle course.

Use an elastic exercise band or hand weights. If using the exercise band, put one or two feet into the band to adjust the difficulty level.

PLIE SQUATS: These are done with the feet pointing out as in a ballet plie, but all delusions of gracefulness end there! Your weight goes on your heels, not your toes. Make sure your knees do not go past your toes when you squat down (this puts a strain on your knees and will hurt them). Stick your bum out like you're sitting in a chair. (You can also vary these squats by putting your feet closer together or further apart, and by having your feet pointing straight ahead.) Involve your arms by holding them in front when you squat and swinging them back as you come up.

STAIRS: All you need is one step! If you need to hold on for balance, don't put any weight in your arms. Try to keep all the work in your legs. Go as fast as you can or as slow as you need to. After 30 seconds, or halfway through the set, change which foot steps up and which one steps down.

TRICEPS: Again using an exercise band or weights, hold your arms above your head, elbows close to your head. Bend and extend your arms against the resistance of the weights or the band. Try to hold your upper arms still with only your forearms moving. Place one or two feet in the middle of the exercise band, or if that's too much resistance, put one foot on one end of the band and hold onto the other end with both hands.

Thanks to Chelsy Hooper (Hilltop Ward) for putting together this post!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Granola Bars

4-1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2/3 cup softened butter
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 cups miniature semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup raisins (optional)
1 cup nuts (optional)

Directions: Preheat oven to 325 F. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, flour, and baking soda. In a small mixing bowl, combine vanilla, butter, honey and brown sugar. Stir this mixture into dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, etc. Lightly press mixture into the pan. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool 10 minutes then cut into squares. Cool completely before removing or serving.

Play around with this recipe! Make it your own. Substitute whole wheat flour for the all purpose flour. Try adding ground flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, or sesame seeds. Try adding other kinds of dried fruit, such as chopped apricots, craisins, or dates. You can also add flaked coconut, butterscotch chips, or wheat germ. If you want to go even healthier, use canola oil instead of butter, and use sucanat instead of brown sugar.

Many thanks to Francine Palmer in the Hilltop Ward for finding this recipe on the internet, trying it out, loving it, and sharing it!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Hearts and HandsIf you are interested in purchasing fleece for Hearts and Hands,
Hancock Fabrics is having a sale on fleece
September 10 through September 30.
All fleece is 52% off, beginning at $3.36 per yard.