In November of 2008 we got to see the United Tour with Steven Curtis Chapman and Michael W. Smith at the St. Augustine Amphitheater. Yep, that’s right an outdoor concert at night in November. No it wasn’t freezing it was only slightly chilly. The Amphitheater is a small venue but very nice. I’ve seen both Smitty & SCC in large venues where need a jumbo-tron just to see the stage but this was much better.
Back stage with Smitty.
SCC rocking out.
Steven’s son Caleb, 2nd from the left played guitar for the tour. Micheal’s son, Tyler, to the right of his dad, played keyboards for the second portion of the concert.
I’ve wanted to try canning for couple of years. I finally tried it canning some blueberry syrup for making homemade soda’s and pancakes. Homemade sodas is new obsession but more about that later. The blueberry syrup experience went well so I decided to try canning salsa. I’ve played with idea of canning my salsa to use as gifts and just have it on hand. Being from Texas salsa is a staple in our house. What I made is a combination of my basic salsa and Ball’s Fiesta Salsa and Jalapeno Salsa. I got a copy of the Blue Book Guide to Preserving. Ball also has a guide to canning complete with videos on their website. The Fiesta Salsa recipe in the book is different from the website. I would suggest buying the book and using the website as to supplement the instructions in the book,
You will need to prep your jars, bands and lids before starting. I used the water bath method of canning.
3 cups tomatoes, seeded
4-6 jalapenos, banana peppers, Anaheim or other peppers seeded
6 cloves garlic
1 small bunch of cilantro — I cut off the leafy part
Juice of one lime
2 tablespoons of chilli powder
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 cup cider vinegar
Pulse tomatoes in food processor until desired consistency. Add to a large sauce pan and heat on medium.
Pulse onion and peppers in food processor and add to tomatoes.
Pulse cilantro and garlic. Add lime juice and pulse another 10-15 seconds. Add to tomato mixture.
Add vinegar, cumin and chilli powders. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
From Blue Book Guide to Preserving: Ladle hot salsa into jars leaving 1/2 inch of head space. Adjust two-piece caps. Process 15 minutes in boiling water canner.
There are some days I’m just too tired to cook dinner and breakfast for dinner has always been one of my go to quick meals.
Pancakes were one of the first things I learned to make by myself. My mom used to keep a batch of batter in the fridge. Mom’s pancakes were always a family favorite, especially the orange pancakes and peach pancakes.
1 1/4 C flour – sifted
1 T. baking powder
1 T. sugar or 1 1/2 teaspoons Truvia baking blend
1/2 t. salt
1 beaten egg
1 C. milk
2 T. oil
2 T vanilla
Sift dry ingredients.
In a large bowl combine egg, milk, oil & vanilla.
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir until smooth
Variations: To the above mixture add one of the following.
One of the things I like about pancakes is that there are so many possible variations and the leftovers make great snacks. I’m munching on a leftover blueberry and cream pancake as I type this.
1 chopped apple
1 sliced banana
1 chopped pear
2 sliced peaches
1/2 C sliced strawberries
Zest and juice from one orange. Substitute juice for part of milk
Handful or two of blueberries.
1/2 c chocolate chip
substitute Almond milk or chocolate milk for regular milk
My hometown Ft. Worth, Texas started as a sleepy outpost on the banks of the Trinity river. It would later grow into a bustling cattle shipping hub earning the nickname Cowtown. Today Fort Worth is one of the largest cities in the country and is part an even larger metropolitan area. In 2003, we knew that we would be moving so the Big Guy could attend grad school, we decided to spend spring break doing “tourist things”. One of the things we did was hit the Stockyards. The photo is dated 2008 because that was when I posted it on my blog. However it was taken in the spring of 2003.