Monday, June 25, 2012


Had another great last minute weekend at the Devils River with the Kerbow's and my madre.  Love that place!!

Then I came home to my wonderful hubby filling up the pool! Love being able to come home and jump in, since that's exactly what I did today, it was HOT!

This afternoon Katy and I made our version of fig newtons.

My Aunt Lida's fig tree is bearing lots of ripe fruit so what better thing to do with figs, right.

So we made two variations, one was the original whole grain and the other was gluten free and sugar free.  I think I like the gluten free version better.

We had plenty of fruit filling left over so we canned it for a quick Fig Jelly.  2 jars being sweetened with sugar and 3 jars are honey sweetened.

Katy is a much better pastry chef than I am.  Her bars pictured above turned out much prettier than mine, Saige probably could have done better than me :)

They are all tasty and all our hard work was topped off with a evening dip in the pool.  Ahh summertime!


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Lemon Cucumbers!

I am so excited I picked my first two lemon cucumbers this morning.  I can't wait to eat one for lunch. 

My cousin Jennifer introduced me to these beauties and I have been patiently waiting for one to be big enough to pick. 

I will let you know how yummy they are!


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Fresh Herb Crusted Salmon

I was watching Barefoot Contessa on Saturday morning and Ina did this awesome salmon recipe.  I had just bought two fresh filets of salmon the day before so I was chomping at the bit to try this. All these herbs are growing in my yard/garden so it was really easy.


1 salmon filet
salt and pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
2 T lemon juice
1/2 cup mined chives
1/2 cup minced dill
1/2 cup minced parsley


I used the grill but you could use the oven set at 425 degrees.  Season salmon with salt and pepper liberally. Combine olive oil and lemon juice and drizzle over salmon.  Let it set at room temperature for a least 15 minutes.  Combine fresh herbs and scatter over the salmon.  I let this set in covered in the refrigerator for about 8 hours.  I think it really marinated the salmon and removed  that fishy flavor it can sometimes have.

Cook salmon for 10 to 15 minutes until firm.

This dish was husband approved and pretty delish if you ask me. Hope you enjoy!


Monday, June 11, 2012

Goat's Milk Yogurt

So my friend over at Life on the Funny Farm gave me a gallon zip lock bag full of fresh goat's milk this week.

Since I have been making yogurt why not make goat's milk yogurt right?

So same low tech apparatus, heating pad, cake plate dome, and pie plate.

I bought my yogurt start at Central Market in San Antonio and I threw the little tub away before I could get a picture but it was just plain goat's milk yogurt.

This time I will be saving 1/4 of this batch to use for future batches.

I added a cup of fresh blueberries and a good tablespoon of honey and a splash of vanilla.

I had it for supper last night and breakfast this morning it is so smooth and creamy and not goaty at all.


1 Quart Milk (any kind)
1/4 cup plain yogurt


If you don't have a yogurt maker like me use a heating pad or a crock pot.  You want the milk and yogurt to be mixed well and then it needs to stay around 110 degrees for 24 hours.  My heating pad has an auto off so it only stays on for three hours and so every time I think about it I turn it back on.  If you have something that would stay at that constant 110 then it shouldn't take 24 hours.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Cheesy Bread Puffs (Gluten Free)

These sinful puffs are heavenly.  I made them for lunch today and I think I ate 12, oops. 

If you have ever eaten at Fogo de Chao or any Brazilian steakhouse you have probably indulged in these bites of goodness. 

This is a copy cat recipe but I have tweaked it a little.  The original recipe calls for two different kinds of tapioca flour and I can never find them both so I just use the one that I can find.     


1 1/2 cups whole milk
2 1/2 cups tapioca flour/starch

3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup oil
4 eggs
1 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly grease a 12- or 24-cup mini-muffin pan. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well until batter is smooth. Fill each muffin cup three-quarters full. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Breads should be crisp on the outside and hollow on the inside, like a popover.

Serve warm and enjoy!


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Best Salad Ever

I was recently introduced to this recipe and I can't get enough of it. I am sure you could substitute the sugar in the dressing with honey if you are doing the "no sugar" thing.

The cinnamon on the pecans gives this salad a great unexpected spice. YUM


1 bag 50/50 mix (baby spinach & greens)
1 bag baby spinach
1 bunch green onion or 1/2 red onion, chopped
1 cup pecans, chopped & rolled in 1 Tbsp cinnamon
1 cup dried strawberries (or fresh strawberries)
1 large avocado, sliced


1 cup sugar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
Mix together well until sugar is dissolved.

11/2 tsp salt
11/2 tsp dry mustard
11/2 tsp poppy seeds
Very, very slowly add while stirring constantly, 1cup oil
Mix salad ingredients and dress with this poppy seed vinaigrette and enjoy!


Friday, June 1, 2012

Learning from a Legend

For the past 39 years the same passionate and caring man has been the face of Sweetwater FFA.  Kenneth Dudensing has impacted a countless number of Sweetwater Independent School District students starting in the 8th  grade and continuing with them all the way through the  12th grade.  He has finally decided to hang up his welding helmet, frock and clippers after almost four decades with SISD Kenneth will be retiring. 

For those of you that haven’t had the opportunity to know this great Agriculture Science teacher let me give you a glimpse of what he has provided Sweetwater students within his tenure. 

Former Sweetwater Ag teacher Eddie Puckett hired Kenneth in 1973 straight out of Texas Tech University and they worked side by side for over thirty years. 

To teach that long in the same school district with the same person speaks volumes about Kenneth’s abilities, both as a teacher and as a person.  These two men were very hard working and equally dedicated to helping students.  When Puckett retired Kenneth kept that fire burning and continued sharing his passion to teach students with five more teaching partners. 

I can personally say that the three years I was able to teach along side Kenneth were the most memorable and rewarding years of my teaching career.  He will always be my mentor and guiding light when I question something.  It was an honor and pleasure to work with him and even more importantly to learn from him. 

Kenneth’s career has had him moving at a fast pace for the past 39 years, there are very seldom times of the year that are slow for an Ag Teacher.

There are three area’s in which Kenneth has excelled. The first being the classroom, the second being extracurricular FFA contests and the third livestock shows. 

He has taught everything from welding in shop class to hunter safety in wildlife management class to animal protein requirements in advanced animal science class.  He has even been a math tutor for students that have struggled with their math TAKS tests.  His desire to help students learn is one that is unprecedented.   Mr. Puckett’s summation says it best, “Kenneth is by far one of the best classroom teachers I have ever seen.”

Classroom activities are only one component of Kenneth’s dynamic career. The second of the three components are LDE (Leadership Development Events) and CDE (Career Development Events) better known as judging contests. 

He coaches teams that compete in all different areas from parliamentary procedure to speaking contests to judging everything from cotton to meat, and his teams wins repeatedly, going to state every year in multiple events. 

In 2012 he took teams to state in cotton, home-site evaluation, poultry, and meat judging.  His cotton judging teams have won state four times in the last seven years, winning the State Championship three years straight (2011, 2010, 2009).

In 1989 his land judging team won the national contest in Oklahoma City, while his poultry judging team was runner-up at the national convention that same year. 

There is a great rich history of competition in Mr. Dudensing’s classroom and he has created quite a legacy over the past nearly four decades.  His classroom walls are lined with photo after photo of teams that have placed in the top ten of their respective contest.  It is something to see, along with the many banners, plaques and trophies that are also displayed. 

One of the most arduous, yet sometimes rewarding responsibilities of an Ag teacher is to take students to stock shows.  Livestock shows are the third component to Mr. Dudensing’s career.  Kenneth usually attends at least seven shows each spring:  Odessa, Nolan County, Fort Worth, San Antonio, San Angelo, Houston, and Austin.  It is a physically exhausting task to assist students as they prepare their animals for the shows; however; by his own admission it is on of the most rewarding.  Especially when he sees his students hard work pay off when their animal project places high enough to sell in the premium sales.

Dudensing’s seven-day-a week, year round commitment to all three of these compenets for 39 years has not gone unnoticed. In 2004 the Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association chose Kenneth Dudensing as the outstanding Ag Science teacher of the year, and in 2005 the Nolan County Livestock Show dedicated the entire show to him.

Kenneth Dudensing has been an institution for Sweetwater ISD, Sweetwater FFA, the Lone Wolf District, Area II, Texas FFA and the VATAT, for which countless students, former students, parents and community members are appreciative. 

Thank you Kenneth for your many years of service, hard work and dedication to give Sweetwater something to be proud of, you will be greatly missed and your shoes will be hard to keep up with. 

Happy retirement!