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Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Reaching my Retirment Goal -

Using My Juicer

June 2, 2021

Not sure why but I've been slow to use my juicer since I retired. Got back on track with one of my favorite juices using beets and fresh pineapple. It was delicious and beautiful to look at.  The glasses are special as they were a gift from the State of Arizona to celebrate my 40 years of service as a State employee. 


April 30, 2021

Homemade gluten free runzas take me home to Nebraska every time I make them. Check out my recipe.

Nebraska Runzas


1 pkg. yeast

1/8 cup water

½ cup milk

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1 egg

2 cups flour

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Heat milk, add butter, sugar, and salt. Cool and add to yeast mixture. Add egg and beat in flour. Let dough rise until double in size. Roll out 1/8-inch-thick and cut into 8 pieces. Add spoonful of filling to each piece.


1 pound hamburger

1 onion

Salt and pepper

½ head of cabbage, cut into ½ inch pieces.

Brown hamburger and drain grease. Add onion, salt, pepper, and cabbage. Heat through and let cool. Let dough rise again after rolled up and put on cookie sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes until golden brown. 

Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Retirement - Weeks 10-11

October 24, 2020

I have been cooking from some of my new, nearly new, and not-used-very-often cookbooks. We have enjoyed recipes from the Complete Cooking for Two Cookbook. I like this cookbook because it makes just the right amount for us without a lot of leftovers. The Science of Good Cooking is also a favorite because each recipe comes with a great explanation of "Why this recipe works". For example, in the delicious Hot and Sour Shrimp, the oil and salt in the marinade was the secret to success. Of course, I am continuing to make "Pandemic substitutions" so our shimp had broccoli, carrots, peppers and onions rather than snow peas. 

Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Retirement - Weeks 6-9

October 10, 2020

The last few weeks, I have continued to use foods from my freezer and my pantry for what I call my "Pandemic cooking". Lots of substitutions and trying some new things. My roasted vegetables, especially the cauliflower have been delicious. I am delighted that CDC has lifted the warnings on use of fresh onions. I have been using dried onions, green onions, frozen pearl onions but my roasted vegetables will be even better with some red or yellow onions added. 

Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Retirement - Week 5

September 12, 2020

The summer fruits have been especially delicious this year. Bert and I enjoy a bowl of fruit with our breakfast each day. Since I am still needing to do complete "no-contact" grocery shopping, if I am out of fresh fruits, there are frozen berries and cherries in my freezer to enjoy. 

This week, I didn't try new recipes but worked to use foods from my freezer. We ate  spaghetti and meat sauce, salmon, crock pot beef stroganoff, and more. 

Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Retirement - Week 4

September 5, 2020

Needed a recipe for salmon and pulled out this Cooking Light Annual from 2011 and made "Maple-Glazed Salmon". The recipe called for making a spice rub, baking the salmon, and adding a bit of maple syrup at the end with just a little more time in the oven. When I went to put the cookbook away, I realized the "Maple-Glazed Salmon" was featured on the cover of the cookbook and mine looked just like the picture. I served ours with sweet potatoes and a roasted vegetable medley with asparagus,  mushrooms, and colorful bell peppers. A beautiful and delicious meal. 

This cookbook looks like I had never opened it. 2011 was a hard year as I had surgeries for breast cancer and Bert was on disability leave for five months at the same time. I think I just wasn't interested in trying anything new that year. Rediscovering the cookbook has been great fun. 

Recipes and Cookbooks

Find out what I'm reading and cooking this week.

Retirement - Week 3

August 29, 2020

Organizing my cookbooks is on my list of things to do in my retirement. While I will take a while to do that, I got started this week by gathering all my fairly new cookbooks into one place. Some, like Pioneer Woman Cooks and Eat Mesquite and More, were gifts and some are ones I've bought over the last year or so. I've cooked from some of them and have lots more recipes to try. I didn't pick a cookbook to use this week but did make a delicious rice pudding in my Instant Pot - true comfort food. Thank you Nicole Dragisics for this great recipe!

Nicole’s Instant Pot Rice Pudding

This is delicious comfort food and easy-to-make in your Instant Pot.


1 cup Arborio rice

1 1/2 cup water

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups coconut milk, divided

1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar (optional)

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup raisins or any dried fruit (cherries, apricots, cranberries, etc.)


1.In pressure cooking pot, combine rice, water, and salt. Lock the lid in place and select High Pressure and 3 minutes cook time. When the beep sounds, turn off pressure cooker and use a natural pressure release for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, release any remaining pressure with a quick pressure release.

2.Add 1 1/2 cup coconut milk and sugar to rice in pressure cooking pot. Stir to combine.

3.In a small mixing bowl, whisk eggs with remaining 1 /2 cup milk and vanilla. Pour through a fine mesh strainer into pressure cooking pot. Select sauté and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture starts to boil. Tur off pressure cooker. Remove pot from the pressure cooker. Stir in raisins.

4.Pudding will thicken as it cools. Serve warm or pour into serving dishes and chili.

5.Serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg, if desired. 

Retirement - Week 2

August 22, 2020

This week, I made great meals and turned to a "tried and true" cookbook - the Hall County Extension Favorites 1976 and 1983. Hall County in Nebraska is where Bert grew up and we lived when we were first married. Bert's mom was a long-time Extension Club member. 

As sometimes happens with online grocery ordering (think two 2-pound bags of bananas instead of 2 pounds of bananas or 3 tomatoes on the vine with 5-6 each instead of 3 tomatoes), I ended up with  more green beans than I could use so I turned to this old and well-used cookbook. I found a "Sweet Sour Bean Salad" recipe and made my "Pandemic" substitutions - fresh green beans instead of canned, green onions, and a jar of pimentos (because I had some in the pantry).  The result is a  delicious and beautiful salad that, as my Mom used to say, "keeps well in the refrigerator."

Here is Joyce Hostetler's dressing recipe from the collection of 1976 recipes: 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/3 cup salad oil, and 2/3 cup vinegar. I mixed them together with my hand-held immersion blender and poured the oil in last (and slowly) with the blender running. 

Retirement - Week 1

August 15, 2020

This week, I've enjoyed spending more time in my kitchen and trying new recipes. I made a delicious broccoli salad, made bread in my breadmaker, and cooked some tasty meals.


I do love cookbooks by other Registered Dietitian Nutritionists and the cookbook I chose this week was "The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Mediterranean Diet" by Kimberly A Tessmer, RD, LD, and Chef Stephanie Green. Chef Stephanie is a colleague here in Arizona.  I made the Almond-Crusted Barramundi with some "Pandemic Pantry" changes. Because of what I had on hand, I substituted slivered almonds for whole and frozen cod for the barramundi filets. It was delicious and I think Chef Stephanie would approve. 

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