Favorite Recipes

Many projects have filled our days and nights over the past month or so. After working tirelessly for weeks on end, we were exhausted! So, this past Wednesday, with my dad’s blessing, my mom, sister, and I took a “girl holiday.” After seeing my dad off to work (I wish he could have enjoyed the “holiday” with us!), we baked a (double) batch of our favorite Cranberry-Nut Muffins and watched BBC’s Return to Cranford on Youtube. What a delightful day! Admittedly, it was a mistake to double the recipe–we ended up eating far too many of these delicious muffins!

It is difficult to find wholesome movies, so we were very glad to stumble upon this one and are happy to be able to heartily recommend it for your enjoyment. Return to Cranford, the sequel to Cranford (which we watched sometime last year), is a delightful tale of small-town life, based upon the writings of Elizabeth Gaskell (the author of Wives and Daughters and North and South).

Below you will find our muffin recipe which is adapted from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, p. 636.

Cranberry-Nut Muffins

Yield: approximately 20 medium size muffins

2 Cups raw cranberries (we buy extra during the holidays and freeze them for later use)

1/2 Cup turbinado sugar

Zest of one orange plus 1 Tablespoon orange juice

6 Tablespoons soy margarine (We use Earth Balance)

1/2 Cup sucanat

1/3 Cup turbinado sugar

Egg Replacer for 2 eggs (we use Ener-G Egg Replacer)

1 Cup vanilla soy milk

2 1/2 Cups pastry flour

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 Cups chopped pecans and walnuts

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and prepare muffin tins
  • Combine the cranberries, 1/2 Cup turbinado sugar, orange zest and juice in a saucepan and cook over high heat for approximately 5 minutes, until berries pop and sugar is dissolved. (This makes a most delicious concoction–a cranberry marmalade–that would be wonderful on its own!)
  • Cream together soy butter, sucanat, and remaining 1/3 Cup turbinado sugar.
  • Mix egg replacer (follow manufacturer’s instructions) in a separate bowl then pour it into the sugar and butter mixture, beating until smooth.
  • Add soy milk.
  • In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients (except the nuts) and then add half of this mixture to the batter.
  • Add cranberry mixture and nuts and then fold in remaining flour mixture.
  • Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins and bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool and then enjoy with a cup of your favorite tea!

I am linking up with Designs by Gollum‘s Foodie Friday.


Kenny and Daddy have been working hard to repair the roof while Kenny has been home on leave.

Meanwhile, we girls have been in the kitchen preparing meals for them.  One of my favorite dishes to make is Vereniki.    It is a simple recipe, but can be quite time consuming.  I recommend listening to a good sermon tape to keep your mind occupied while your hands are busy.  Below is the recipe I use.

Potato Vereniki

Mashed potatoes (Ashley makes the most delicious mashed potatoes!  She boils the potatoes in water seasoned with garlic salt.  When they are ready, she drains them, reserving the potato water to use while mashing them [in place of milk], and then flavors them with all kinds of delicious spices [more garlic, basil, thyme, oregano, rosemary, etc.].  Very tasty!)

Vereniki dough

  • 3 Cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 Cup hot (not boiling) water (We like to use the potato water because of the wonderful flavor it lends to the dough.)
  • 1 Tablespoon oil (mix with the water)

Mix flour and salt.  Add hot water and oil and stir until dough clumps together.  Knead.

Roll dough into a log approximately 2″ in diameter and slice into many small pieces.  Roll slices into flat circles.

Fill with mashed potatoes.

Filling the Vereniki

Filling the Vereniki

Fold over and pinch shut.  They should resemble half moons.

Drop into boiling water.  Vereniki will rise to the surface when done.

May serve immediately or refrigerate until later. When ready to serve, lightly brown in oiled frying pan. (Potato Vereniki are delicious with olive oil and sauteed onions drizzled on top!) Serve with a fresh, green salad.