My musings…

Being state-side has its advantages – like being able to go to the grocery store and cook!

Last week strawberries were on sale, so I made a strawberry shortcake and a strawberry/spinach salad – both were delicious! Recipes follow:

Strawberry shortcake: (8 servings, ~ 360 calories each)
1 qt strawberries, sliced
1 c sugar, divided
2 c flour
4 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
dash nutmeg
1/2 c margarine
1/2 c milk
2 egg yolks
2 egg whites

Mix the strawberries with 1/2 c. of sugar, set aside.

Mix 1/4 c sugar with flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. Cut in margarine until crumbly. In a small bowl mix milk and egg yolks together. Add to dry ingredients, stir just until moist.

Divide and pat into 2 greased 9″ round cake pans.

Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Spread over dough. Sprinkle with remaining sugar.

Bake at 300*F for 40 – 45 minutes or until golden. Cool 10 minutes, remove from pan to wire rack. Cool completely. Serve topped with strawberries and milk!

Review: The dough was really thick. I mean like really really thick. But it turned out nicely. Elvis had never eaten a strawberry shortcake before and he was a little hesitant when I told him that was his dinner, but he enjoyed it and took the leftover biscuit/cake for breakfast the next morning. Note that the base is not really sweet, but it’s not cake-y either.

Strawberry Spinach Salad (8 servings, ~180 calories)
2 bunches spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-sized pieces
4 c sliced strawberries
1/2 c olive oil
1/4 c red wine vinegar
2 T sugar
1/4 t paprika
3 T sunflower seeds

Whisk together oil through paprika. Pour over strawberries, spinach and sunflower seeds. Toss to coat.

Review: Delicious! And fast and easy! I made this for Megan’s bridal shower and received a lot of compliments. Could also make it with almonds, mandarin oranges or walnuts. Other ideas include using balsamic or white wine vinegar and using honey in place of the sugar. The original recipe called for a LOT more sugar, but I don’t think it needed that much. If you do, you can add it back in.

In other news, I have also finished reading 2 books – one from my list, one not from my list.

The Grapes of Wrath was one and I’m not sure why I never read it in high school. I really enjoyed the book. It is set during the Great Depression and focuses on a sharecropper family, the Joads, who moves West in search of better opportunities. Thousands of other families do the same, however, and it soon becomes a “race to the bottom.” While they were originally offered high wages, upon arrival there were thousands of others trying to get the same jobs and would offer to work for a lower and lower wage until they were just working for their dinner. Definitely an interesting read.

The other book was a much faster read – The Baby-Sitters Club: The Summer Before. I read pretty much the whole BSC series growing up and when I heard Ann Martin had written a prequel, I snatched up my copy as soon as it could be ordered. While reading it, I was instantly transported back to my childhood reading books outside in the grass on summer days. I always identified most with Kristy – the athletic one – but always wanted to wear the wacky outfits that Claudia put together. They were like my sisters growing up, haha. It was a great book!

I have started in on Little Women now, we’ll see how long it takes me to finish it. Maybe not that long since Elvis will be working this weekend!

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