Green Tomato Pie

I am giving you a break from zucchini recipes, but not to worry, I still have a few that I have not posted! Just fair warning. LOL! I found this recipe in one of my mom’s cookbooks. It was an American Heritage, circa 1976, cookbook from Better Homes and Gardens. Some of the dishes are a little dated. I would have to bump up the spices in most of them, but I left this one alone, well mostly. I increased the pounds of green tomatoes to give it a more deep dish look and added ground Allspice. And oh yeah halved the amount of sugar. This tastes like a spicy apple pie.

2 ½ pounds Green Tomatoes
½ cup Sugar
4 tablespoons All Purpose Flour or Wondra Flour
1 ½ teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1 teaspoon grated Lemon Zest
½ teaspoon ground Nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground Allspice
½ teaspoon Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
2 tablespoons Butter
Pastry for 2 crust 9 inch pie, homemade or store bought (I cheat and use store bought)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Dunk green tomatoes in boiling water for 1 minute. Peel and remove core. Cut into ¼ inch slices. In a medium saucepan combine with ¼ cup water. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove slices from liquid and set aside. Mix sugar, flour, cinnamon, zest, nutmeg, allspice and salt into the liquid in the saucepan. Cook and stir until just boiling. Remove from heat. Add butter. Mix. Gently stir the slices. Cool for 10 minutes. While tomato mix is cooling line the pie plate with one prepared pie crust. Spoon in the tomato mixture. Place top crust over the tomatoes and adjust. Seal, crimp edges, cut slits to allow steam to escape from the baking pie. Sprinkle with additional sugar if wanted. Bake for about 40 to 45 minutes.

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Dehydrated Tomato Powder

During the heat of the summer I try to limit the amount of stove top and oven cooking I do.

I lean heavily on my Crock Pot. I love my gas stove in the Winter, hello cozy kitchen, but in the Summer it can make my kitchen and living room as hot as Hades.

With my central air unit being cranky right now (its 30 years old), I am limping along with a single window unit in the living room.

So much has happened this year, I will deal with it in Spring. I am not procrastinating, I am picking my battles.

So in an effort to not live in a Swedish sauna, I have been using my Excalibur dehydrator to preserve my produce.

My garden has been producing nicely this year, even though it has been very dry in my area of Oklahoma and I have  to water every day.  My water bill is high but it is worth it.

I do dehydrate produce from my garden but the majority of my items to dry come from the quick sale section of my local grocery store.

It is part of an Oklahoma family owned chain. They are not a big box retailer  and can offer quick sale items at a deep discount.

Recently, I scored five pints of grape tomatoes at 39 cents each and two pounds of roma tomatoes for $1.00. Sweet.

I didn’t want to freeze them (I have several quart baggies in the deep freeze already) and I couldn’t use  that many tomatoes for fresh cooking , so my dehydrator was put to work.

I sliced the grape tomatoes in half if they were small and in quarters if they were larger. I didn’t bother to blanch them. I sliced the romas thin, about 1/4 inch slices. I gave the stem end to my chickens.

No waste at my house!

Arrange all of the tomatoes in a single layer on the trays. Try not to let them touch each other. I use 135 degrees F and set the timer for 10 hours. That is way longer than probably needed but I like the dried veggies to be very crispy.

In the past I have had to throw out jars of moldy produce and that is just a waste of time, effort, electricity and money. Best to be sure. If you don’t have a dehydrator you can use your oven on the lowest setting.

After the tomatoes are completely dry, grind into a fine powder using a blender. A food processor will result in more flakes as the final product. Pour into a storage jar with an airtight lid, label it and add the date.

It can last up to 24 months in a cool dry place.

I add tomato powder to many different recipes I make. Soups, pasta sauces, stews, chili’s, even Bloody Mary’s. You can sprinkle it on bread to make garlic tomato bread as a side for pasta. Once you start using it, I am certain you will find many applications for it. The concentrated tomato flavor packs a big punch. Use the powder “to taste” as an addition to a soup or stew. Or  if making a sauce use 1 part powder to 1 – 1.5 part water. Adjust accordingly. Your mileage may vary.

I have seen tomato powder in those big box retailers selling in bulk at $11.95 for 16 ounces or worse 1/2 cup for $8.95. Yikes! That is too expensive for my budget. I have also seen tomato bouillon cubes with “natural flavorings”. Usually that “natural flavorings” include MSG and corn products. No thank you, ma’am.

This technique is budget friendly, nutritious and helps you along the path of food security in uncertain times. In another post I will talk about my adventures with leafy greens.

I do have a couple of favorite books on this subject. The first book was my mom’s. That’s how I became interested in dehydrating. It is,”Dry it, you’ll like it” by Gen MacManiman. It was first printed in 1973. The second book is, “The dehydrator’s Bible” by Jennifer MacKenzie, Jay Nutt and Don Mercer. Between the two of these, I have all of the information I need.

I hope you enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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Slow Cooker Beef and Bean Chili Stew

Now this recipe is not a gourmet meal, it is ,however very feeling on a cool Autumn day. The beans are canned and the ground beef is browned in a skillet so it only needs about 3 hours on high to be ready for lunch. I have always been a frugal shopper. I can sniff the quick sale items as soon as I enter the store.  LOL.  I recently retired and I really need that skill I honed while I was at my town job. And the price for food has skyrocketed!  The kale is from my garden that is still producing a lot of food. Even though we had the first frost. I have the kale pots under the eave of my porch. The ground beef was a quick sale score (reduced 50%) that was in my deep freezer. I don’t buy ground meat at the store. I try to buy quick sale cuts and grind it into hamburger with my KitchenAid mixer and the grinder attachment. The pint of grape tomatoes was a 29 cent buy a couple of days ago.  This recipe makes a huge amount of stew, 8 to 10 quarts. This stew does freeze very well, so you can portion into servings and have stew in the freezer for a cold Winter’s day.

2 ½ pounds Ground Beef, (you can also ground turkey, venison or chicken) browned in batches in a skillet

1 15.5 oz can Navy Beans

1 15.5 oz can Dark Red Kidney Beans

1 15.5 oz can Pinto Beans

1 15.5 oz can Black Beans

1 15.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes

1 8 oz can Tomato Sauce

1 6 oz can Tomato Paste

1 cup diced Onion

2 ½ cups chiffonade Kale

1 small container Grape Tomatoes

½ cup Brown Sugar

¼ cup Molasses

Salt and Pepper to your taste

Use a large slow cooker 6 or 8 quarts for this recipe. Set on high. Mix all ingredients in the slow cooker. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook on high for 3 hours.  Add water if the stew is a little too thick. Pairs well with crusty homemade bread.  Enjoy!

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First frost 2021

The first frost came to 12 Dog Farm in the early morning of 12 November, 2021. It was almost two weeks late. We usually have the first frost in the last week of October. I have not checked the native persimmons on my property for the Winter forecast, but I am hoping this late frost means a mild Winter.  Hey I can dream. Okay? No Debbie Downers here.

The photo shows the Sweet Potato harvest. It weighs in at 6.5 pounds. So it is a Bantam weight entry from one 10 inch planter. I am planning to plant three pots in the Spring. Maybe, just maybe that will triple my harvest in early November 2022. The last of tomatoes after the frost can in at 3.2 pounds. I guess that is classed tiny Bantam weight. I see Green Tomato Pie in my future. That recipe is my archives. I will try to repost but I am technically blog challenged.

Tony and Seamus in the basket

These are the new kittens we grew on the farm. They are three pounds each of mischievous. If I could harness their purr motors, I could sell the energy back to my grid. LOL.

I am at home now and trying to adjust to being retired, Hopefully, that will translate to more regular blog posts. Thank you for reading my blog. Blessings to you and be safe wherever you are.

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Southern Pimento Cheese Spread

Okay, it is Spring in Kentucky.  All of the “Southern” recipes emails that have been flooding my inbox should have given me a clue about a social event happening soon. Yeah, I’m not one for crowds of any kind. In fact, a couple of weekends ago I attended  a conference in Tulsa. 4500+ people. Man, I felt like a recovering agoraphobic on her first fieldtrip. I survived and it was a great time. So anyway, this weekend is the Kentucky Derby. I might watch if I remember and if I am not on the mower. I will make some munchies and finger foods though.

There are many recipes for Pimento Cheese Spread. I found this one in a cheeky little book titled, “ Being Dead is no excuse. The Official Southern Ladies Guide to hosting the Perfect Funeral.” It calls pimento cheese “the paste that holds the South together.” Enjoy this classic spread on butter crackers, celery or as a tea sandwich. Keep the crusts on!

 ½ cup Mayo, store bought or better yet, homemade

1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

2 Tsp Powered Mustard

1 Tbsp grated Onion

Sea Salt and fresh ground Black Pepper to taste

Several splashes of Tabasco Sauce

4 oz jar, diced Pimentos, drained

3 cups shredded Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Mix first four ingredients in a medium bowl. Salt and pepper to taste. Add hot sauce.  Add pimentos and cheese. Mix thoroughly. If you want a smoother spread process in a 4 quart food processor until it is the consistency you want. Taste and season again if needed. Store in a covered bowl and chill at least 3 hours. Flavors meld better overnight. Enjoy!

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Sweet and Spicy Shrimp and Pea Stir Fry

  I just had a nice pea harvest and I wanted to something that highlighted the peas. This is a perfect weekend lunch or work week dinner. Use uncooked shrimp for this recipe since they will be quick cooked in the stir fry. I found this recipe over at .The original recipe called for soy sauce. I used ponzu sauce instead. It has a wonderful citrus flavor to it. I was in Louisiana a couple of weeks ago. My friend’s neighbor has bees and sells Catahoula Wildflower honey. It is awesome. BTW this dish goes very nice with a dry white wine, (as seen in the photo!)



  • ¼ cup Ponzu or Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Corn Starch
  • 3 Tbsp Honey
  • 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
  • ¼ Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 large clove Garlic, peeled and pressed or minced

Stir Fry

  • 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Coconut Oil
  • 1 ½ cups Snow Peas
  • 1 lb raw Shrimp, deveined and peeled

Cooked Brown Rice or White Rice

In a small bowl, whisk the corn starch into the ponzu sauce until combined. Add honey, lemon juice, pepper flakes, and garlic and whisk. Set sauce aside.

Heat oil over medium high heat in a large cast iron or heavy skillet. Add snow peas and stir fry for about one minute. Stirring frequently. Add snow peas and cook until pink. Add sauce and stir to combine. Cook for about a minute until thickened. Serve over rice. Enjoy! This so good.

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Cauliflower Tabbouleh




This a wonderful lo-carb substitute for bulgur tabbouleh. Since this is my own recipe I cannot claim that it is gluten-free; however, my ingredients are comparable to commercial recipes that are labeled gluten-free.

  • 2 small heads Cauliflower, riced or grated. You can buy already riced cauliflower but if you are thrifty like me you can grate the florets on a box grater
  • ½ lb Tomatoes, small dice
  • ½ large Cucumber, grated
  • ½  cup Oil, I use extra light Olive Oil
  • ½ cup Lemon or Lime Juice
  • 1 bunch of Green Onions or 3 Leeks, sliced fine
  • ½ bunch of Italian Parsley, chopped fine
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Seasoned Salt, Aldi’s has a seasoned salt without MSG
  • 1 Tsp Kosher or Sea Salt
  • 1 Tsp Black Pepper

Mix all ingredients and chill for 2 hours before serving.

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Lo Carb Thai Beef and Broccoli in a slow cooker

I do large quantity cooking on the weekends so I have enough for lunches and dinner during the work week. I have made this recipe several times and it never fails to satisfy! Tastes better the second day after the flavors meld. I found this over at





  • 1 ½ lbs Beef diced, chuck is best
  • ½ cup Beef Stock
  • ½ cup Tamari, Soy or Coconut Aminos
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Oil, not toasted
  • 2 Tbsp sweetener, I use Coconut Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Sriracha Sauce
  • 2 cloves Garlic, peeled and pressed or minced
  • 3 cups Broccoli Florets
  • ¼ cup Green Onions, thin sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Seeds
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Put beef, stock, tamari, sweetener, sesame oil, sriracha sauce and garlic in the slow cooker. Cook on high for four hours. Add the broccoli and cook on high for 30 minutes, until the broccoli is tender.  Season to taste. Serve with green onions and sesame seeds. Can serve with cauliflower rice as a side.

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Yogurt Ranch Dressing

This is a wonderful recipe that I got from a cooking show on PBS OETA Create channel, Ellie’s Real Good Food. I have made it several times already and it is always gone quickly. What I like about making this recipe is that you choose what you put into it. I stay away from commercial products like mayo that has soy or canola oil in the ingredients. You can also make your own mayo using just olive oil. Be the master of your food destiny! LOL.

This easily doubles or triples.

  • ½ cup Plain Yogurt, not Greek
  • 2 Tbsp Mayo
  • 1 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • ½ Tsp Garlic Powder
  • ½ Tsp Sea Salt
  • ½ Tsp White or Black Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp dried Parsley
  • 1 Tbsp Chives
  • 1 Tsp dried Dill Weed


Mix all together. Place in wide mouth jar and use within a week.

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San Francisco Fisherman’s Stew – Cioppino

Lately I have been on a fish kick. Rarely am I in one of the cities to get fresh fish so fortunately the local stores have a decent selection of frozen fish and shrimp.  I have not tasted honest to goodness Cioppino so I hope my version is close.  I will post a photo the next time I make this. The stew went too fast to get a photo!

  • 8 Tbls Butter
  • 2/3 cup Shallots, Green Onions, Leeks, Sweet Onions, small dice
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 cup dry White Wine
  • 1 can (28 ozs) Crushed Tomatoes
  • 4 Tbls Tomato Paste
  • 2 (8 ozs) bottles Clam Juice
  • 2 Tsp Kosher Salt, divided
  • 2 ribs Celery, diced
  • ½ Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Tbls dry  Italian Seasoning
  • 1 ½ lbs firm White fish, cubed, Pollack, Cod, Flounder, Haddock, etc
  • 1 ½ lbs Littleneck Clams or Mussels
  • 12 ozs Scallops
  • 1 ½ lbs large raw Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Heat the butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until tender but not brown, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the wine and increase the heat to high. Boil until the wine is reduced in half, about 4 minutes. Reduce heat. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, clam juice, celery, 1 tsp salt, pepper flakes and Italian Seasoning.  Bring to boil and reduce to simmer. Cook for 25 minutes. Add the White fish and remaining salt  and cook for 10 minutes. Add clams/mussels, scallops and shrimp. Cook for about 6 minutes. Can garnish with chives or parsley. Pairs very well with garlic bread or focaccia.

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