Friday, June 5, 2009

We have come to the end of another week. I will be making the following cookies to put in My Cookie Jar early. We are branding again this weekend, so I need something portable to take along for dessert. I can make two pans and have enough to fill my cookie jar. That's a bonus for me!

Congo Bars

2/3 cup shortening
2 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans

In a saucepan, melt shortening over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar. Cool slightly. Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add gradually with eggs to shortening mixture. Stir in vanilla, chips and nuts. This batter will be very stiff. Spread into a greased and floured 13x9x2 inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Cut into squares while warm.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I am so excited. I just received my cookie plate from Nestle. Now I have to decide who to give cookies to. There are several people in my life that could use a little bit of chocolate lovin'.

If you don't know what I am talking about, Nestle did a promotion to receive a cookie plate. The requirements were UPC symbols from Nestle Toll House Morsels. You sign the plate, fill with cookies, visit to share your story about the plate, and send it to someone. You can keep up with where the plate went after you sent it. Hopefully, it keeps going for a long time. I think it will be very interesting to see where it ends up going.

Obviously, I will have Chocolate Chip Cookies in My Cookie Jar this week.


Monday, June 1, 2009

We have started our branding season. We always brand on Saturday, since that is the day most of our help is available. They always enjoy a day in the country after a long(or in this case, short) work week. After dealing with people, it is great to work with animals. There is no talking back!

After gathering the cattle on horseback from the pasture, they are driven into a set of corrals. We then separate the cows from their calves.

We have one person running the head gate, one on the squeeze part of the chute, one person branding, one person doing innoculations and ear tagging. When we have extras, we split up the work. Even the youngsters get in on the fun. The boys take turns bringing the calves one at a time up the narrow alleyway to the chute. I am sure that if and when we get girls into the family or somebody finally has daughters they will get in on that action, too.

Somewhere around noon to 1 o'clock we break for lunch. This year we had brisket sandwiches, baked beans and chips. Of course no picnic is complete without iced tea and lemonade. Then we have brownies for dessert.

The brisket was covered with Claude's Brisket Sauce and baked in a 300 degree oven for about 4 hours and then turned up to 325 degrees for another 4 hours. This was a very large brisket. It probably weighed a good 15 pounds or so. I didn't think of weighing it. Of course when you have your beef processed, it doesn't come with weight stickers. You would have to adjust your cooking time for a smaller brisket. We then sliced it and poured pan juices over the meat. We served with barbeque sauce, cheese, sliced onion, pickle, tomato and lettuce leaves. It makes the best sandwiches and the recipe is so easy.