Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Robin Birds Video & 1880 Steamed Brown Bread Recipe and My Homemade Minestrone Soup with Meatloaf

Finally the rain has stopped, but it's due to begin again tonight. We've been raining for like 11 or 12 days off and on. It's a mess out there. We've had some pretty crazy storms. I was glad for the partial sunny day yesterday, although today is no sun at all. We are so spoiled in California with all our sun. But this time of year, we go weeks without the sun, but sometimes in January we be very cold and have gorgeous sunny days.

Here is a another video I took of some Robins, I tell you I have to stalk the birds to get video's of them. Bird watching is a tricky thing, you have to be very quiet or they will quckly fly away.

Steve put together the cabinet for me Wednesday. Because of the storms we've had, all the furniture I ordered came late. The Cabinet had to be assembled. My room is a mess right now, so photos of my craft room will be forthcoming as I try to organize this room now. I am about two thirds of the way done. I am so far very happy with the way things are fitting in the cabinet and I even had room to fit extra things in there, so that way the room looks really neat without a bookcase that become very sloppy looking.

I just got back from taking our two dogs, Edie and Effie to the vet's. In order for the dogs to get their heartworm meds they have to take a test each year, that cost $39.50. Why so expensive for this yearly test I always wonder? my total vet bill for the hearworm test, and Edie's Rabies shot, plus she gets a pre-med for vaccine reactions, because both her and Effie have bad reactions to the shots and they had a nail trim, so my vet bill was $129.80, which was cheaper then September's bill, so I guess I shouldn't complain.

I made some homemade Ministrone Soup and some Steamed Brown Bread from a 1880 recipe first found in cookbook called Miss Parloa's New Cook Book of 1880.
It was really good bread and the soup was good too. I made up my own recipe for the soup. I can tell you what I put in there, but I don't have exact measurements.

Here is the photos for the Minestrone Soup and Steamed Brown Bread followed by the recipe.

Minestrone Soup

Minestrone Soup

In the 1880's they used 16 oz. vegetable cans, that seemed yucky to me so I used a bunt cake pan
similar to this one sold at Macy's.
Steamed Brown Bread

I put the bunt pan in a steamer and added water only up to the top of where the bunt pan would end.
Steamed Brown Bread

I just used a vegetable and pasta steamer. Is there any other kind? I'm not sure.
Steamed Brown Bread

Here is what the uncooked bread looks like in the bunt pan after the pan was greased and floured.
Steamed Brown Bread

After you get the batter in the pan you cover the pan with foil.
Steamed Brown Bread

Now you put the foil covered bunt cake pan back in the steamer, I had it originally in the steamer to be sure it fit and I could get it back out.
Steamed Brown Bread

Here is what the Brown Bread looks like after it has been steamed.
Steamed Brown Bread

Here is the brown bread all finished and ready to eat!
Steamed Brown Bread

Another photo of the bread ready to eat.
Steamed Brown Bread

Recipe for the Steamed Brown Bread follows from Miss Parloa's New Cook Book of 1880.

2 cups buttermilk-if you don't have buttermilk take 2 tablespoons of the milk out after measuring the milk and add 2 tablespoons vinegar this will curdle and sour the milk.
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup raisins
3/4 cup light or dark Molasses (I use Grandma's)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Grease and flour bunt pan or if you prefer you can use four 16 ounce vegetables cans (41/4 x 3 inches) or 7-inch tube pan or like me I used a bunt cake pan. I'm not sure if a tube pan is the same as a bunt pan or not? I would think a tube pan was shaped like a tube.

Beat all ingredients in a large mixer bowl on low speed, scraping bowl constantly, 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed, scraping bowl constantly 30 seconds. Fill cans or pan 2/3 full. Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Place cans on rack in Dutch oven or steamer; pour boiling water into steamer to level of rack. Cover steamer. Keep water boiling over low heat or until wooden pick inserted comes out clean. About 3 hours, mine took about 1 hour and half. (Add boiling water during steaming if necessary.) Immediately unmold bread.

*If you are using self rising flour, decrease baking soda to 1 teaspoons and omit salt.

If you prefer to bake the bread, bake it at 325 F. Pour batter into greased 2-quart round casserole. Bake 1 hour.

Kat's Minestrone Soup

1/2 head of cabbage chopped
1 red onion chopped
1 cup celery
1 carrot sliced
1 cup of cooked shell macaroni
1 can chopped canned tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce, small or large
1 can garbanzo beans or great white northern beans
4 cups water
5 beef bullion cubes

I added leftover crumbled meatloaf, yes meatloaf and my husband loved this soup because it was in there!

Have a great Friday and wonderful weekend! ~Kat


  1. Oh wow Kat, such pretty pictures, and the food looks wonderful, I'll be right over! Set a place for meeeeee.
    I love your pretty black jacket with the pink flowers on it in the photo.
    I meant to tell you that one day when I commented about Sacramento, was that on the Weather Channel, they list places everyday that say are having the worst weather, so in turn, they say, that is the worst place to be "for the day" I didn't mean for it to say it was a bad place to be. Only for the "weather that day"
    I hope you have a beautiful week-end. It truly looks like it could snow here at any minute, just not cold enough, although we are in for some very cold nights.
    Oh I could never tell you the exact amount of ingredients when I cook either, I just start throwing stuff in, unless it's a cake or bread, well you know ♥
    I'm having the worst time in the world trying to get this to comment *wah* thank God I copied and pasted first to my notepad before I hit the comment button!

  2. Tell Sandy she's got a friend joining her at your house for dinner!, Kat. Everything looks scrumptuous.

    Have a beautiful weekend.
    TTFN ~ Marydon

  3. G'eve Kat ~ No the chandelier is nothing special, just an old vintage one with really old German prisms. TY tho for thinking it was ... I love it.
    Have a beautiful weekend.
    TTFN ~ Marydon

  4. Hi Kat!! It is so pretty in here!! I love all of the goodies you have been making, how fun!!
    I hope it stops raining there soon. I do not like rain much. We ended up with 7 inches of snow yesterday. It is so pretty. :) Have a great day!!

  5. Hi Kat,
    Boy you are a busy little homemaker, the bread and soup has my mouth watering here ;) Great video of the Robbins too. Hope you had a fab weekend. And have a great week ahead!
    Hugs, Dru

  6. Hi Kat! Your soup and bread look delicious and healthy. I've heard of baking bread in a can but I think the bundt pan is nicer, too. I like pendant lights, too. Funny how they were popular in the 70's and now they're back. Our recessed lights are small and halogen and they look like little fairy lights. Adds such a cool atmosphere and looks great reflected off the hardwood floors. They'll look great on our cathedral ceilings in the living room. We're goonna get Fifi right on it! ;) (((Hugz)))

  7. Hi Kat! Like I said before, our lights are a little smaller than normal recessed lights- they are halogen and they can tilt so you can direct the spots to light up paintings or other areas. There are 8 of them across the ceiling and they're on a dimmer. They're pretty different from normal recessed lights. Pretty hard to photograph a light but I'll try when I get a chance. :)

    As fa as the look-alikes... I could see Meg Ryan especially when she had the curly hair like in When Harry Met Sally! :)

  8. Hi Kat,
    This may be a duplicate post. If so, them I am sorry. I told you I was 'dense' at times. *LOL*

    What a cute video. Well done, Kat. You backyard is so pretty.
    I love your cabinet and the other pieces. What a difference that is going to be rather than shelves. I can't wait to see photos.
    While I was looking at your soup and bread pictures my stomach started to growl. I would love to have a bowl of that minestrone and a piece of bread. Yum!
    I am sorry I missed wishing your Mom a 'Happy Birthday'. I hope she had a wonderful day.
    I am sorry that I haven't visited sooner. I am a little dense at times and didn't click on the newer link that you let for me on my blog. I kept clicking your 'Tablescape' link/post from October.
    I hope you have a lovely day.

  9. Ciao Kat, what a beautiful new webhome you have! :) I will be back later to read your entries, have a lovely day! Hugs!!


Thank you for your comments and stopping by my blog.... it was so sweet of you to visit with me today.

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