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Recipes, Photography, Musings

Month: May 2014 (page 1 of 3)

Recipe for Cucumber Cheddar Boats

Cucumber Cheddar Boats

Ingredients:

  • six Kirby or other type of pickling cucumbers
  • eight ounce block of cheddar cheese
  • toothpicks

Directions:

Thoroughly wash and pat dry the cucumbers.  Slice them in half lengthwise, so they form a boat shape.  Cut the cheese into the shape of a triangle so it looks like a sail.  Place the toothpick into the cheese triangle sail and place the other end of the toothpick into the cucumber boat.  You may have to experiment with the size of the triangle until you find the size that is big enough, but will not tip the boat over.  Also, the size of cucumbers varies, so you may have to experiment with the number of cucumbers needed.  Photos of the finished cucumber cheddar boats are in my post by the same title, as an example.  It probably goes without saying that these treats taste best when they are cold, so try to keep them in the refrigerator or a cooler until you are ready to serve them.  Enjoy!

 

Cucumber Cheddar Boats

One evening a couple years ago, my sister-in-law and I were sitting around brainstorming for something to take to my daughter’s school picnic.  I was feeling overwhelmed with everything that was going on at the end of the school year, and I could not get inspired about a dish to make for the picnic.  She came up with this great idea of cucumber cheddar boats.  I am truly grateful to her for this fun spin on ordinary cucumbers and cheese.  I have taken these boats to a number of picnics and school functions, and they are always a big hit.  They are healthy, tasty, and they look cool.

DSCF4043        DSCF4041

Asparagus Time

This spring I am especially excited about asparagus. I think that is because everything is late this year, so we have been waiting a long time for anything fresh and green. I have been to a couple of farmers markets this past week, and asparagus is the best vegetable I can find. So far, it has been hard to find any greens.  Asparagus tastes best with minimal preparation. It needs to be washed thoroughly and can be eaten raw to get the most nutrients. My kids like it best when I stir-fry it in a wok or skillet with a little olive oil and salt.  After washing it, I chop off the tough ends. Then I stir-fry it in olive oil for about five minutes, depending on the thickness and size of the asparagus spears. While cooking, I keep checking the tenderness with a fork, and when the spears are tender-crisp, I turn off the heat and serve them with a little salt and sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. It is very simple, but sometimes simple is the best when you want to bring out the true flavor of the fresh vegetable.


DSC_0244DSC_0239

Asparagus Time

This spring I am especially excited about asparagus. I think that is because everything is late this year, so we have been waiting a long time for anything fresh and green. I have been to a couple of farmers markets this past week, and asparagus is the best vegetable I can find. So far, it has been hard to find any greens.  Asparagus tastes best with minimal preparation. It needs to be washed thoroughly and can be eaten raw to get the most nutrients. My kids like it best when I stir-fry it in a wok or skillet with a little olive oil and salt.  After washing it, I chop off the tough ends. Then I stir-fry it in olive oil for about five minutes, depending on the thickness and size of the asparagus spears. While cooking, I keep checking the tenderness with a fork, and when the spears are tender-crisp, I turn off the heat and serve them with a little salt and sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. It is very simple, but sometimes simple is the best when you want to bring out the true flavor of the fresh vegetable.


DSC_0244DSC_0239

Molasses Snaps

Molasses Snaps

  • Servings: approximately 40 cookies
  • Time: about one hour
  • Print
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature (if you only have salted butter, just omit the salt in the recipe)
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup dark molasses (preferably blackstrap molasses)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Beat or vigorously stir the butter in a large bowl until creamy. Gradually stir in the brown sugar and molasses until fluffy. Add the egg, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt; beat or stir vigorously to blend.
  3. Combine the flour and baking soda in a small bowl. Slowly add to the butter mixture, stirring just until combined.
  4. Drop dough by rounded teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheets. Place 1 1/2 inches apart.
  5. Bake in preheated oven (375 degrees) for about 7 minutes. Remove cookies from sheets to racks to cool.
  6. Enjoy!
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