Mash Browns

This is one of the ways I like to use up leftover mashed potatoes. I turn them into hash browns, hence the name. It’s not fancy, it’s real, simple home cookin’. You probably do this already, but if you don’t, here’s how I do it.

This makes 3 patties. Take about 3/4 to one cup of leftover mashed potatoes and put it in a small bowl. Add one egg, salt and pepper to taste or other seasonings you like (garlic is really good!) . Mix well with a fork. Add butter or duck fat to a skillet and let it get hot. Pour the potatoes in three piles and flatten with a fork to about 1/2 an inch thick.

Turn the heat to medium.  Allow to brown well before turning over.  If you flip them too early, they will fall apart.

Cook the other side until brown.  Serve hot with eggs.  I like homemade ketchup or salsa with my mash browns and eggs.  They are plain good  (or good plain), on their own too!

How do you use up leftover mashed potatoes?

This post is part of Simple Lives Thursday blog hop, hosted by A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa, Culinary Bliss and GNOWFGLINS.

Cucumber yogurt dip


Looking for a dip to serve tonight? Here’s what we’re having! This cucumber yogurt dip, also known as tzatziki, is easy, simple and quick to make.

3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced finely
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 cup yogurt, drained
1 cup sour cream
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
1 tsp. chopped fresh or frozen dill

Mix the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, combine the yogurt and sour cream with a whisk. Stir the oil/vinegar mixture into the yogurt/sour cream. Add the chopped cucumbers and dill. Refrigerate for 2 hours to blend flavours.
Serve with fresh veggies, or warm flat bread triangles.
Draining the yogurt first makes the dip less runny and thicker.

Have a wonderful New Years Eve! Stay safe.

This post is part of Simple Lives Thursday blog hop, hosted by Sustainable Eats, Culinary Bliss, A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa, and GNOWFGLINS.

Homemade calf starter

I know you can buy calf starter from the feed store. It comes balanced with grains, protein, vitamins and minerals for the growing calf. It also comes with chemicals and antibiotics which is why we’re raising our own calves in the first place.

In the book, “Raising a Calf for Beef” by Phyllis Hobson, there’s 3 recipes for calf starter. For me to follow one of these recipes exactly, I’d be buying up to 60 kg or 132 lbs of grain. That’s a lot of grain for 2 little calves! So I came up with an adaption to one of the recipes using a grain mix I can buy called 60/30/10 in a 20 kg (44 lb) bag. It’s 60% oats, 30% barley 10% corn and sprayed with molasses. The grains are cracked or crushed. So that’s my starting point. I used a kitchen scale for this recipe.

Calf Starter
5 lbs of 60/30/10
½ cup molasses
2 tsp. salt
½ oz. cod liver oil
½ lb. dry milk powder

This fills a 6L or 1½ gallon pail. Which is plenty until they start to really eat it. Mixing too much is risking the grain turning mouldy before it can be used up. The calves seem to like it and it feels really good to make my own. It saves us a little money too.

I found my recipe!

recipesI’ve been hunting for my chokecherry wine recipe. All the recipes I was looking at called for wine yeast, a campden tablet, tannin and/or pectic enzyme.  I wanted to make it the old fashioned way and I had done it that way before but a long time ago.  I was looking through my recipe pile for something else when I found this page, ripped from it’s original book.  YAY! You can click on it to enlarge. Well used, huh?  I found the rest of the book as well, without its cover.  My apologies to anyone interested in the Potato Wine recipe.

I’ll start making chokecherry wine tomorrow.

Greek Roasted Chicken & Potatoes



Call me anxious but we had a chicken for supper last night.  It was one that I had cleaned on Monday so it had 2 days of rest in the fridge.  I made Greek Roasted Chicken & Potatoes.   This recipe is one of our favorites but I hadn’t made it in a while.  The ingredients are so simple,  the sauce you get is SO good!  Whether it’s truely Greek or not, someone Greek will have to answer that. 😉  Enough about the recipe,  you want to know how the chicken was right?  Let me say, I was not disappointed!  It’s nice to get excited about a simple chicken again.

Rainy day in the kitchen

It’s been rainy and cool the past 3 days so I took the time to try some new things in the kitchen.

The first thing is this hearty Aduki Bean Stew.  I made it up based on a few recipes.  It turned out very tasty.


  • 2 cups aduki beans (soaked overnight and rinsed)
  • 10 cups ham stock
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • handful of pot barley
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 cups chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp fresh oregano, chopped

Simmer first 6 ingredients for 1 1/2 hours.  Add tomatoes and oregano and simmer another 30 min. 

This recipe makes LOTS.  Three of us had 2 or 3 bowls for supper and there were about 3 bowls leftover for lunch today.  It’s all gone, by the way. 😉

The other recipe I tried was a Cold Rice Salad and Maple Vinaigrette.  I’ve never made either before today.  Thank you, Wardeh ( for the inspiration.


  • 1/2 cup raw brown basmati rice, cooked
  • 1/4 cup raw wild rice, cooked
  • tomato, sliced
  • celery, chopped
  • cucumber, chopped
  • little bit of onion, chopped

Toss with Maple Vinaigrette.  Before serving, add some walnuts.  You could add just about any vegetable you like.  I used what I had on hand.

I have never made a vinaigrette before but I can tell you this won’t be the last!!  I was taking a chance with the Maple Vinaigrette, but it is really good and goes well with the Cold Rice Salad.


Maple Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
  • 1 small clove of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Mix the ingredients in the blender, slowly drizzle in oil, blending constantly until thickened.  Serve at room temperature.

I’ve been snacking on the salad… it’s so good!! I’m trying to leave enough for supper tonight. 🙂

Friday evening

With all the sickie-dickies in the house this week, I thought it would be a good idea to make some hearty, healthy soup!  So! I made Lentil Stew.  Have to credit  Sylvia at for the recipe.  It’s a real keeper, if you ever want to try it!

lentil stew

lentil stew

My hubby came home sick still.  The soup was just what he needed to warm and nourish him.  There is still lots leftover if you care to risk catching what we have.  OR you can make your own:

A lot of this recipe can come from your home garden.

Lentil Stew

Heat this to boiling lower heat to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours

2 cups dried lentils

7 cups water

ham bone

2 cups finely diced potatoes (optional)

1/2 cup finely chopped carrots

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 cup chopped celery

3 Tbsp. minced parsley

1 clove garlic, crushed

Then add:

2 cups canned tomatoes

2 Tbsp vinegar

2 Tbsp sugar

1/2 tsp. oregano

2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp.  black pepper

Simmer another 30 minutes.  Add water or stock if needed.