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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Buttery Peanut Brittle and Eye of Round Roast

The Christmas season is always filled with a wonderful assortment of foods! The tantalizing aromas of cookies baking wafts through the house. Bowls of oranges and nuts join the never empty fruit bowl. Jars of homemade candies are added to the pantry ready to refill the candy bowl as needed.

Buttery Peanut Brittle

Homemade candy is perfect for gift giving. Buttery peanut brittle is a Christmas favourite. I seldom make it any other time of the year. The rich, buttery candy is sure to please. It's very easy to make too so be sure to make a lot.

Buttery Peanut Brittle
2 c granulated sugar
1 c light corn syrup
½ c water
1 c butter
2 c roasted peanuts
1 tsp baking soda

Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a large sauce pan. Cook and stir until sugar dissolves. When the syrup boils, stir in the butter. Stir frequently after the mixture reaches 230ºF (110ºC). Stir in the nuts when the temperature reaches the soft crack stage (280ºF/138ºC). Stir constantly until the temperature reaches the hard crack stage (305ºF/152ºC). Remove from heat and quickly stir in the baking soda. Pour onto two cookie sheets. Allow to cool. Loosen from pans as soon as possible. Break into pieces. Store in an air tight container.
Yield: 2 ½ pounds.

Eye of Round Roast

Roast beef is the perfect cold weather meal! I slow roasted an eye of round roast topped with sliced onions, Worcestershire sauce and Diana sauce (original flavour) at 250ºF (120ºC) for 4 hours. I increased the temperature to 350ºF (177ºC) for the last 10 minutes of cooking. The result was a tender, medium rare, nicely browned roast (1). I served the roast with golden potatoes (2). Golden potatoes are rich and creamy while being low fat.

Method: Wash and peel potatoes. Cut into cubes. Wash and peel two large carrots. Cut into chunks. Combine potatoes, carrots, two cloves garlic and one half chopped onion. Bring to a boil and cook until vegetables are tender. Drain. Pour about 1 cup of defatted chicken stock. Mash to desired consistency.

The left-over roast beef was refrigerated over night then thinly sliced (3) and divided into three equal amounts. Two of the amounts were vacuum sealed for freezing (4) with the rest used for sandwiches.

Grilled Cheese & Roast Beef Sandwich

During the busy holiday season it is nice to rely on simpler meals as well. Roast beef slices between two slices of Ziggy's Internationale® medium cheddar cheese on 7 Grain bread then toasted makes for a tasty and quick meal. I don't actually grill these sandwiches. What I do is assemble them the butter the two outer sides then toast on each side on medium heat in a non-stick fry pan until golden brown and the cheese in melted. Actual cheese slices rather than American processed cheese gives a nicer result. Serve with a bowl of steamy, homemade tomato soup for a frugal, comforting winter meal.

5 food lovers commented:

jayedee said...

gg, do the cookie sheets need to be buttered for the peanut brittle? we're supposed to be getting some drier air this week and i'd love to attempt this one! thanks!

Garden Gnome said...

Hi Jayedee! I didn't butter the cookie sheets as they were non-stick and there is a fair amount of butter in the candy so it doesn't stick. As soon as the candy is cool enough to lift a bit, turn the cookie sheet over and flex just enough for the candy to pop off then break into the desired sizes. Please let me know your candy results.

Take care,

jayedee said...

wish my luck! the ingredients are on my shopping list!

Garden Gnome said...

Good luck Jayedee :)

jayedee said...

my peanut brittle is a HUGE success! in fact, i had to hide it in order to have some leftover for christmas! thanks for batting another home run, gg! now, onto marshmallows! woo hoo!