Swedish Chocolate Balls (Chokladbollar)

Guys, guys guys!!! Cookie Season is nearly upon us!  Fall decorations have exploded on people’s porches: pumpkins, gourds, straw bales, corn stalks, and those slightly corny “Happy Fall Y’all” signs. Stores are bursting with Pumpkin Spice everything.  The trees are starting to turn brilliant reds and rusty oranges, even here in the South.  This morning, there was a wonderful chill in the air, whispering promises of a cooler weather just around the bend.  It’s so magical! 

I like to think of these cookies as Sweden’s version of American No-Bake cookies. They’re loaded with buttery goodness, sugar, chocolate, and oatmeal. We had them every Christmas that I can remember as a kid, though in Sweden, they’re not really “Christmas cookies”, per se. You can buy them pretty much year-round at any pastry shop you visit.

This recipe comes from the Swedish cook book “Sju Sorters Kakor” (Swedish Cakes and Cookies), page 182.  I’ve altered it slightly to make measurements a little easier for those of us who don’t use metric everything (though I’ve still included weights). This is slightly over double the original recipe because it just doesn’t make enough, lol.  I roll the cookies into roughly 1-inch balls (maybe 1 ¼ inches), yielding about 30, which is perfect!

The original recipe calls for cold, strong coffee, which…ewe, no.  For those of you who love coffee, by all means, add away.  I think they’re spectacular without it (wink, wink).  I’m not sure how wet the mixture would be by adding the coffee, but you may find it easier to refrigerate it for a little bit before you roll out the balls if you do decide to add it.  It’s your call—do what’s easier and makes the most sense for you. 

Happy No-Baking!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Swedish Chocolate Balls

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Yield: about 30 cookies



Mix your softened butter, sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl.  Whisk it until smooth (I just use a fork for easier cleaning, but you can use a Kitchenaid or beaters if you’d like).

Sift the cocoa powder into the butter mixture (I recommend sifting especially if you live in a more humid climate to get rid of any lumps—you definitely don’t want to bite down on a clump of straight cocoa powder, ick).

Add the coffee if you’re using it and mix until smooth.  Last but not least, mix in the oatmeal.  You’ll want to dive in with your hands for this one to make sure that it’s evenly mixed (make sure to take any rings off your fingers first!).

Take bits of the mixture in your hands and roll out cookie balls (1 to 1 ¼ inch in size).  Place them on a cookie sheet.  Once they are all rolled, dip them in a bowl of either pearl sugar or coconut flakes until they’re evenly coated.

Place the coated chocolate balls back on the tray.  When you’re all done, place the tray in the freeze for about an hour, or until they get hard.  Once they’ve hardened, transfer them to an airtight container and store in the freezer until you’re going to serve them.  They’re best served cold (either from the freezer or the fridge).

My Journey of Loss and Grief

My blog was initially supposed to be a place to share memories, recipes, and the happenings on our little homestead in the country.  But I also want it to be real life.  And real life can be messy.  Real life can be sad.  Real life can throw all kinds of curveballs.  Today’s post is very personal.  I don’t have any delectable food to share, just the pieces of a fragile, broken heart, wading through a maze of uncertainty, pain, and sorrow.

November 14, 2020.  March 29, 2021.  September 17, 2021.  These three dates are burned into the core of soul.  Dates I will never forget.  Dates that will haunt me with each passing year.

It all started in December of 2019.  Husband and I decided to start growing our little family.  In early February, we found out that I was pregnant.  I was excited. Husband was in shock that we got pregnant so quickly.  I took the classic “bump” pictures with a vegetable in front of the mirror for 3 consecutive weeks.  And then it happened.  At first, it was just mild discomfort.  Soon the spotting started, followed immense pain.  We had lost our baby.  I was 7 weeks pregnant.

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

~Psalm 34:18

Fast forward to a July of 2020.  I got my second positive pregnancy test. We were happy, but I also had some feelings of anxiety, not wanting to get too excited because what if I lost this baby too?  I made it past 7 weeks with no problems.  I started to allow myself to hope, to look at maternity clothes, to check Marketplace for baby gear. Then the bleeding started, later accompanied by contractions that got steadily worse.  We had lost our second baby. I was 9 weeks pregnant.

We got pregnant with our third baby in December of 2020.  I got my positive pregnancy test in January of 2021.  This one was met with similar feelings as the last one—excitement clouded over by feelings of dread and anxiety, almost expecting that we would lose this one too.  The weeks went by and everything seemed fine. I had an ultrasound at 4 and a half weeks and again at 8 weeks.  The baby looked healthy and was growing at a normal rate.  We told our parents the good news.

When I passed 9 weeks, I felt relief.  No blood.  No pain.  I seemed to be experiencing all the normal pregnancy symptoms—fatigue, some nausea, swollen breasts.  When I got to 12 weeks, I went to a couple thrift stores looking for gently-used maternity clothes.  I started sending Husband advertisements for cribs, and we almost bought a nice, used stroller.  I registered on Amazon, reveling in all the cute baby cloths and practical day-to-day gizmos and gadgets.

2 days shy of 13 weeks, I went to my OBGYN for a routine checkup.  Husband wasn’t allowed to come with me because of COVID restrictions.  After a doppler check and 2 different ultrasounds, I was told that my baby had no heartbeat.  I lay there, alone, taking in this news, not sure how to process it; not sure what it all meant. I was in shock. I had to call Husband from the doctor’s office and tell him the devastating news over the phone.

We lost 3 precious babies in less than a year.  Friends, life just downright sucks sometimes.

Dealing with the loss of a baby can feel so isolating.  I’ve been amazed at how many women have experienced this kind of loss. It’s not readily talked about—it’s almost a ‘taboo’ topic.  It doesn’t take much googling to find forum after forum of women pouring out their broken hearts and sharing their stories with others who have gone through the same thing.  I wish it was talked about more. I wish it was shared more.  It is nothing to be ashamed of, Friends.  It’s a part of life in our broken world.  Some experience it, and some never have to feel that pain. 

A beautiful Friend hand carved this dog and sent it to me shortly after miscarriage number 3—a precious “You Are Loved” gift.

I don’t know that I’ve dealt with it all as well as I should have.  At times, I’ve hardened my heart towards God, refusing to read my Bible or even pray.  Other times, I’ve wept on bended knee before my King, letting His peace that passes all understanding wash over me. I still have moments of numbness, not really believing that it’s true.  Today, September 17, would have been my due date for baby number 3.  Had I not lost that sweet one, I may be holding him in my arms right now or any day soon.  But, that’s just not reality. 

I have moments when all I want to do is ask why. Why does this keep happening to us? I start to doubt myself and believe that I am unfit to be a mother.  I’m not worthy. I look back on my life and all of the things that I have done wrong and wonder what it was specifically that I did to deserve this?  What sin did I commit that was so bad that it cost me the lives of my 3 children?

Deep down, I know that these are lies, but in moments of great weakness, sometimes it’s hard to see and believe the truth.

“He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”

~Psalm 103:10-12

Friends, it’s okay to be filled with sorrow.  It’s okay to doubt. It’s okay to weep. It’s okay to drink that bottle of wine alone, letting the flood waters roll down your cheeks.  It’s okay to lay in bed a little longer because you’re struggling to face the day. It’s okay to not be okay.  

Those feelings don’t just go away overnight. They linger, sometimes hidden behind a wall of our own making, but ready to pounce when we least expect it.  I often go for days without thinking of our sweet little ones.  And then the reminder hits me like a ton of bricks when I see the shy smile of a toddler in the shopping cart next to me or hear the infant crying in church or see the pregnant mama lovingly rub her swollen belly.

One day, it will get better.  The pain will never go away, but it will soften, I think. 

“He gives and takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

~Matt Redman
I took this picture just an hour before my 13 week appointment, eager to share the news with the rest of our family and close friends. Little did I know…

If you’ve experienced a loss, my advice to you would be this:

  • Let yourself cry—a lot. 
  • If you want to drink, then drink, my Friend! 
  • Don’t watch TV shows like Firefly Lane or Longmire (if you’ve seen them, you know what I’m talking about). 
  • Go for walks. 
  • Love on your significant other and make sure he doesn’t feel alone in his suffering because they feel it too, maybe not physically like you have, but it is a very real loss to them as well.
  • Cuddle your fur babies. 
  • Pray. Even when you don’t feel like it, just pray. Tell God what’s going on in your heart and mind. Don’t block Him out.
  • Drink lots of tea.
  • Skip church on the dreaded Mother’s Day or the Baby Dedication Sundays. 
  • Accept help and love from your dear friends and family—its not a sign of weakness.
  • Most importantly, love yourself.  Don’t listen to those lies that you are unfit to be a mother. The lie that you made some mistake in the past that you’re paying for now. The lie that you’re not enough.

I’ve never gotten to hold my sweet babies.  I’ve never kissed their cheeks. I’ve never touched their soft skin.  I’ve never held their chunky, little hands. But, Friends, Jesus gets to hold them!  My Jesus held them first!  A friend, who recently experienced a miscarriage of her own, shared this quote with me (I’m not sure where it comes from originally, but it’s just a beautiful image).  I hope it brings you some comfort, dear Friend:

“…and to think, the first thing he saw when his little eyes opened, was the face of Jesus.”


Delicious Orange Sticky Rolls

There’s this camp.  A camp in Iowa.  A camp tucked away, surrounded by miles and miles of corn fields.  A camp called Hidden Acres.  I have a lot of fond memories there.  I never attended the camp in the typical “summer camp” sort of way, but the Mission that my parents served with hosted what they called “Re-Entry Camp” there every year.  It was a week set aside specifically for all the missionaries and their kids coming back to the States from overseas; a week to debrief and prepare for life in America.  For some, it was a transition into what would now be their permanent place of residence, and for others, it was just temporary—just for a year or two.

The summer before 4th grade is the first time that I remember Hidden Acres.  It was a week filled with fun activities, games, music, and connecting with other MKs (Missionary Kids) in a way that only Third Culture Kids can.  I got to room with the other girls my age in a rustic cabin in the woods. We got to play at the lake daily, canoeing, swimming, and springing people as high into the air as possible from The Blob.  What fun it was! That camp helped ease me into what would turn into two years in the States before we headed back overseas.

Five years later, the summer before my freshman year of high school, my family, again, returned to the States.  We spent another fun week at Hidden Acres.  I got to meet some new MKs but also got to reunite with old friends from five years earlier.  We had just as much fun in the lake, played tons of soccer, and had a lot of deep, meaningful conversations, talking about our past years abroad and fears and apprehension about the big move Stateside. 

Four years later, we did it again, but this time, I was coming “home” permanently.  Our leaders helped prepare me for college and living as an “adult” in my passport country—a country in which I had spent so little time.  I was so naïve.  So nervous. So unsure. I had very little idea of what life was going to be like, but I’m am grateful for the time that they invested in me.

The last time that I was at Hidden Acres, it was the spring of my junior year of college.  The camp graciously let my parents book the main lodge for a reunion with all the kids that used to live in the dorms with us in Cameroon.  It was over Easter break.  So many of my wonderful “hostel siblings” came from all over the place.  We picked up where we left off.  We laughed together. We sang together.  We cried together. We prayed together. We fellowshipped together. We cooked together. We ate together.  It was short but oh, so sweet. 

So, what does all this have to do with food? Well, as most of you may remember, Camps aren’t really known for their food, but let me tell you, Hidden Acres had the BEST orange dinner rolls! They were sweet, sticky, and hit the spot every time! I’m not sure exactly how they made them but decided to try my hand at it.  Guys, they turned out so yummy! Give it a try! They’re a delicious dinner roll that pairs well with pretty much any main meal.  Enjoy!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Orange Sticky Rolls

Time: 2 ½ – 3 hours

Yield: 15 Rolls


  • 1 cup warm Water (240 mls/240 grams)
  • 1 TBSP Yeast (10 grams)
  • ½ cup plain Yogurt (135 mls/~ 250 grams in weight)
  • 1 ½ TBSP Vegetable Oil (23 grams)
  • 1 ½ TBSP Sugar (19 grams)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 3 ½ -4 cups All-Purpose Flour (~600 grams depending on the type of flour you are using and the runniness of your yogurt)
  • ¼ cup Butter, Melted


Start with ½ a cup of warm water and add your yeast to it.  Stir it well and set it aside for about 5 minutes to bubble and froth. 

Meanwhile, in a separate, large bowl (or your KitchenAid mixing bowl), pour the remaining ½ cup of warm water, the yogurt, oil, sugar, and salt. Use a whisk to mix it all together. 

Once the yeast/water mixture has sat for about 5 minutes, add it to the bowl and give it another whisk so that it’s all evenly mixed.

Gradually start to add the flour, mixing as you go, until you have a nice ball of dough.  Knead the dough for about 8 minutes, adding small amounts of flour, as needed, if it’s too sticky. You want the dough to spring back at you when you gently poke your finger into it.

After kneading, grease a large bowl and place the dough in it to rise.  Cover it with plastic wrap and set it in a warm place for about 1 hour to 1 ½ hours, or until doubled in size.

While the dough is rising, zest our orange and get as much juice out of it as you can (you want to have close to ⅓ cup, though the exact amount isn’t that important).  Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until you have a spreadable/pourable glaze that doesn’t have lumps in it.  You may need to adjust the powdered sugar a little.  Add more if it’s too runny, or if it ends up too thick, add a little more juice or water to it.

When the dough has fully risen, punch it down. 

Divide it into 15 equal parts, and roll each part into smooth balls.

Grease a 9 x 13 pan (like this one!).  Place the dough balls evenly in the prepared pan.  I like to do 3 wide by 5 long.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Let the dough rise for about 15-20 minutes while the oven preheats.

Just before putting them in the oven, melt your butter and brush it generously over the dough balls. Some of it will run into the bottom of the pan—this is good!

Bake for 30 minutes, or until lightly golden brown in color.

Remove from the oven and immediately drizzle the glaze over the baked dough, and return the pan to the oven for 2 more minutes.

Take the finished bread out of the oven and let it cool for a bit. Serve warm with any main meal you wish.

Building Our Chicken Coop: Recycling at its Finest

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

One of our Spring and Summer projects has been chickens!!! We kept talking about how we wanted to get some, but we never took the plunge.  Most people would get a coop figured out before getting their feathery friends…but us? Nope! We decided that if we got the chicks first, then we’d be forced to figure out the coop situation and we wouldn’t keep putting it off…lol…maybe not the most recommended method, but it worked for us :D.

When we moved into our house a couple years ago, the previous owners left a strange building in the back yard. We don’t know what it was for—some critter of some sort.  We decided to take it apart and repurpose the materials for our chicken coop.  With how high wood prices have been recently, we thought it’d be a great way to recycle, reuse and save some money.  All in all, the coop cost us about $96.00, and $48.00 of that was a gallon of outdoor paint!

We did some research to figure out square footage needs, roosting needs, nest box needs, etc., and sifted through several different designs to figure out what we wanted to do.  We picked and chose different aspects of different coops that we saw and created our own design with exactly what we wanted—the world was our oyster!

I’m not a builder, but I can tell you that as “honorable” as it is to recycle and reuse, doing so with wood is hard!! Especially wood that’s been primarily nailed together (face palm).  Screws people! Use Screws!!! 

Despite the nails, the disassembly went fairly smoothly, with the exception of Yours Truly deciding it was a good idea to remove the roof alone, slightly bending our ladder…woops (face palm…again…). 

After we had all the pieces apart, we measured out our new dimensions, making sure to discard any wood that was rotting.  I didn’t want it quite as tall or as long as the original, and also wanted to put it on stilts so that the girls could hang out under the coop. 

The original windows were screwed into the wooden walls and sealed (Yay! At least they were screwed!!! :D).  I had read that coops need lots of ventilation and airflow, so I removed the windows and reattached them with hinges so that they could open.  We stretched ¼ inch hardware cloth over the windows, wanting something more durable than screen in case a fox decided to jump through the window…

The original building had a ceiling.  We cut the ceiling out so that we could screen the eves with hardware cloth, allowing crossflow in the “upstairs” portion of the coop.

We had some left over deck stain from refinishing our front porch last year, so we stained the floor to hopefully help cleaning go a little more smoothly.  In the future, we may end up putting a sheet of vinyl flooring down…not sure yet though.

We also decided to paint the walls dark green so that it’d blend into the environment a little better. Plus, we love dark green 😊.  We primed the walls first, then painted with a glossy, outdoor-friendly paint.

Next, we worked to level the ground where the coop would rest.  We brought the base over and attached the stilts and cross sections to stabilize it. Then, it was just reassembling.  We put all the pieces back together. 

We decided to make 4 nest boxes for our coop so that we can grow a larger flock down the road.

For inside boxes, we wanted to go with a “roll-away” option. We watched this video on YouTube where a guy used paint trays with turf in them: easy to assemble and super easy to keep clean!

After attaching the nest boxes, we were able to fasten ¼ inch hardware cloth to the upper eves.  We dug a 1-foot deep trench around the base of the coop and stretched ½ inch hardware cloth—we wanted to make sure that critters couldn’t dig under the coop and attack our precious Layers.  We built a small door into the lower section to let the girls out during the day.  I wanted it big enough that I could crawl in there if I needed to (like to build them a swing…yes, I definitely did that 😉).

When it came to the roosting area, I knew that I wanted something that was easily removable for cleaning.  Chickens poop a LOT at night when they’re sleeping 😉.  We decided that, because the coop is pretty tall inside, we’d make a removable “second” floor.  It’s kind of like a drawer, with handles on the outside so that you can slide the floor out and scrape off the poo to clean it.  We used some oak branches from a recently fallen tree for our roost bars.

The final step to the coop itself was building a ramp from the floor down to the ground underneath the coop.  My brother recommended that we make the ramp liftable, so that we have the option to secure it up at night if we need to.  It took a little finagling with the way the floor had been put together on the original building, but we got it handled. 

Last, but not least, we got a food and water system figured out.  This part cost nearly as much the whole rest of the coop because of the PVC pipes that we used.  We spent close to $80.00 just on the food and water system!  But it works great, and we have been able to leave for a week-long vacation without having to worry about them running out!  We got our watering cups on Amazon and they work well.  We had to wrap the snot out them with plumber’s tape so that they wouldn’t leak, but from reading other reviews, that is quite common for this kind of watering cup.

We decided to use Aspen chips for our bedding material for the girls.  Pine is commonly used, but in our readying, we found that the sap can be toxic over the long term, so we chose the Aspen. It’s a little more expensive, but we opted to give it a try.  I buy the Aspen bedding at Chewy.com

Another thing that we decided to add to the coop was this awesome solar-powered light.  We don’t have electricity out where the coop is, so this light is just magical for our overnight lighting needs.  I painted ours with red paint so that it’s not quite so harsh. I highly recommend it! I’ve heard that the key to happy, laying hens in the winter is light, even at night. We haven’t gotten to winter yet, but I’ll keep you posted. 

Once everything was set up, it was time to put the girls in their new home.  Success!  For the first week, they were only in the house portion.  I went out every evening and physically placed each bird on the roost bars so that they would get used to sleeping up here.   For the second week, we let them down into the under/stilted portion.  Over these couple of weeks, we did build a nice, tall fence around their outside area, so for the third week, we finally let them out into this outer space (we can’t let them be fully free range because of our predator situation where we live).  

For added security, we took an old VHS video tape (I chose Scream…yuk) and strung the tape around the top of the fenced in area.  We used to do this in Africa.  It flutters in the wind, and the shimmer deters predators of the sky from swooping down for some dinner. So far, it’s worked wonderfully!

It’s been a really fun project, and I’m happy to announce that we started getting our first eggs at the beginning of August and are now getting about 5 eggs a day! 

I hope you’ve enjoyed the pictures and our process. Thanks for stopping by, Friends!   

P.S. I also recently made curtains for the girls… 😉

Sloppy Joes, Sloppy Does, and Dreams of the North

Ah, Sloppy Joes.  When I think of Sloppy Joes, the first things that come to mind are children, chips, and a big mess, lol.  I don’t really remember eating these a lot as a kid, but what I do know is that, as an adult, I do love me some Sloppy Joes, mess and all!  They are definitely NOT just for kids 😉.  

In our house, we fondly refer to them as Sloppy Does.  Why, you might ask? Well, we make them, primarily, with venison.  Hence, Does… 😊  Last year, we were blessed with 2 deer.  With how much meat prices have gone up in the last year and a half, it’s been a huge gift to have this wild game in our freezer.

Our archery season starts in just under a month, September 15 (in honor of my brother’s birthday—yes, I’m SURE that’s why they picked that day for Open Season 😉).  For us, hunting isn’t just a sport—it’s a lifestyle.  We don’t hunt for the trophy.  We hunt to put food on the table. 

We’re the dorks who, in our spare time, watch shows about living in Alaska, surviving alone in the wilderness, hunting and preparing wild game…that’s our Jam…our Dream.   On almost a weekly basis, one of us says something to the effect of “Honey, lets just move to Alaska”, or “Babe, it’s time to drop it all and just head North”.  The wild, untamed wilderness tugs at our hearts.  Maybe someday we’ll end up there, on the Tundra, subsistence living though harsh winters and mild summers.  Sounds like a wonderful dream to me!!

Today, I wanted to share with you my favorite way to prepare Sloppy Joes. As mentioned many times before, I’m not a huge fan of veggies….so I try to sneak them in here and there.  To be honest, my favorite for this recipe is to just have onions and garlic added to the meat, but I have come to enjoy additional veggies, like bell peppers, shredded carrots, and even cabbage.  Pick and choose what you’re willing to try though.  I hope y’all enjoy! Thanks for stopping by!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Sloppy Joes


  • 1-2 TBSP Oil for frying
  • 1 packed cup Onions, finely chopped (150 grams, or about ½ 1 large yellow onion)
  • ½ TBSP Garlic (6 grams, or about 2 large cloves)
  • 1 lb lean Ground Beef or Venison
  • 1 diced Bell Pepper (color doesn’t matter) (120 grams, or about 1 cup) (optional)
  • 1 medium carrot, grated (about 70 grams, or about ¾ cup) (optional)
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • ½ tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Black Pepper
  • ½ cup Tomato Paste
  • ½ cup Ketchup
  • 1 TBSP Yellow Mustard
  • 1 TBSP Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 cup Water


Heat up a pan or cast iron skillet. Add the oil.  Once the oil has heated up, add the onions and sauté for about 2 minutes.

Add the ground beef or venison and cook until it’s browned (about 5-8 minutes).

Stir in your garlic.

If you’re adding the vegetables, add them at this point and stir them until well mixed.

Sprinkle in the dry spices (chili powder, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper), stirring well.

Finally, add the tomato paste, ketchup, mustard, W. sauce, and water.

Once it’s thoroughly combined, reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 25-30 minutes to give the spices a chance to infuse.  You’ll want to stir it occasionally to make sure that it’s not sticking.

Serve warm on fresh, homemade buns (check out my Delicious Hamburger Bun recipe to see how I make my buns—they’re delightful!).  You can also top the meat with cheese to make it extra Yummo. 😊

Delicious Hamburger Buns

Hi Guys!!!! This is the same recipe as my Molasses Sandwich Bread. It’s so delicious, Friends!!! All you do after making the dough and letting it rise, is divide it into 4 oz dough balls, roll them out, place them on a baking sheet, and bake them!

So much better tasting and more healthy than store bought buns!!! Plus, they freeze really well! I routinely make them for the two of us, freeze the majority, and just pull out a couple, as needed, for us to eat. Microwave them for 30 seconds, and voila, you have nearly fresh, preservative-free, home-made buns. 😊 YAYYY!!!!!!

See my recipe below! Happy Baking, Y’all!!!!

Delicious Hamburger Buns

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **


  • 2 cups warm Water (480 mls)
  • 2 TBSP Yeast (20 grams)
  • 1 cup plain Yogurt (270 mls)
  • 3 TBSP Butter, melted (45 grams) *(You can also use your choice of oil instead of butter)
  • 3 TBSP Molasses (60 grams)
  • 3 TBSP Sugar (37 grams)
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 7-8 cups Bread Flour (~1 kg—depending on the type of flour you are using and the runniness of your yogurt)
  • 1 Egg + 1 TBSP water, beaten and brushed on rolled buns
  • Sesame Seeds for sprinkling on top of the buns, optional


Start with ½ a cup of warm water and add your yeast to it.  Stir it well and set it aside for about 10 minutes to bubble and froth. 

Meanwhile, in a separate, large bowl (or your KitchenAid mixing bowl), pour the remaining 1 ½ cups of warm water, the yogurt, melted butter, molasses, sugar, and salt. Use a whisk to mix it all together. 

Once the yeast/water mixture has sat for about 10 minutes, add it to the bowl and give it another whisk so that it’s all evenly mixed.

Gradually start to add the flour, mixing as you go, until you have a nice ball of dough.  Knead the dough for about 8 minutes, adding small amounts of flour, as needed, if it’s too sticky. You want the dough to spring back at you when you gently poke your finger into it.

After kneading, grease a large bowl and place the dough in it to rise.  Cover it with plastic wrap, and set it in a warm place for about 1 to 1 ½ hours, or until doubled in size. Punch the dough down.

Divide the dough into 4 oz dough balls.

Roll the dough balls with the palm of your hand on the countertop. Place them on a greased cookie sheet. Press them down with the heal of your palm.

Allow them to rise an additional 15 minutes.  While they are rising, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. After the second rise, brush them with the beaten egg/water mixture. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Place the rolls in the preheated oven. 

Bake the rolls for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove them from the oven and let them cool on cooling racks.

These are great for cheeseburgers, hamburgers, sloppy joes, or any old sandwich. Enjoy! 😊

Deliciously Simple Iced Coffee: Coping with Summer

These hot summers are killing me, y’all!  The heat, on top of the humidity, on top of the fire ant bites, on top of the yellow jacket stings, on top of the sun burns, on top of bathing in my own sweat day after day…I just can’t ☹.  In all reality, as miserable as it can be, there are worse things.  I really have nothing to complain about and am so blessed!

So how do I cope?  Well, I’ve turned to iced coffee…that’s right, iced coffee. Now, for those of you who know me, you know that I’m more of a tea girl—always have been, always will be.

I’ve never liked the taste of coffee, but the smell—ah, swoon!!!  I always used to say that I’d pick tea over coffee any day of the week.  That being said, life in South Carolina has changed me.  The summers have changed me. Lol. 

I’m by NO means an expert in coffee.  I’m sure there are lots of “professional” ways to make iced coffee that use fancy gadgets and machines.  My method here is about as simple as it gets. I’m sure some of you would be mortified by my amateur techniques, but…it works, it’s simple, it doesn’t require anything fancy, and it’s so refreshing on hot summer days after working for hours outside in the scorching heat.

Happy Drinking, Y’All!!! 😀

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Simple Iced Coffee:

Yield: 1 gallon

Brew Time: 24-36 hours




Put the ground coffee into the jelly strainer bag.  Tie it tightly. 

Fill the pitcher about ¾ full of cold water.  Float the bag of coffee in the pitcher.  I like to keep the strings slightly hanging out so that it’s easier to retrieve after the brewing is done.

Place the lid on the pitcher and set it in the fridge for 24-36 hours.   

When the brewing is complete, carefully remove the bag of grounds from the pitcher.  Squeeze it a little to get the majority of the liquid out, and discard the grounds.  Rinse and gently hand-wash the bag, and let it dry so you can use it again for the next brew.

I like to top off the pitcher with cold water so that I end with a full gallon to drink.

Store the coffee in the fridge. 

Mixing Ingredients:

  • ¾ – 1 cup brewed Iced Coffee
  • 2 TBSP Half and Half
  • 2 TBSP pure, 100% Maple Syrup
  • Ice Cubes

Mix it all together and enjoy. You’re Welcome 😉

Rice and Gravy—The Super Supper!

Have you had those days, weeks, or even months where life keeps throwing you lemons, and you just don’t have it in you to make lemonade?  Well, it’s been that way for me lately—it’s been a bit of a discouraging summer, and the discouragement has even seeped into my love for cooking and blogging. But, I’m trying to “get back on the horse” and tackle one tangible thing at a time.

So, I decided to share this recipe with y’all today. It’s super simple, super fast, super cheap, and super delicious. Not to mention, it’s one of my favorites! My mom used to make it a lot when we were growing up (well, lets be real, she still makes it when I visit 😊). Mamma used to laugh at how much we all liked it because it’s such an easy, cheap meal and was always just something she’d throw together.

When we lived in the US, our main source of meat was venison. In a hunting season, we would often end up having 4 or 5 deer in our freezer which was a huge blessing when feeding a family of 6 on a tight food budget. This past year, God provided us with a couple deer of our own, so we’ve been able to use venison for a lot of meals lately. If you have any access to ground venison, I recommend it for this recipe. Often, local butcher shops carry it, so if you don’t hunt, check them out to see what options they have.

Anyhoo, that’s my spiel for today—short and sweet. Happy cooking, my Friends!  Thanks for stopping by!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Gravy Recipe

Yield: about 4 cups

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15-20 minutes



In a medium frying pan, sauté your chopped onions over medium heat (I love using cast iron for my frying needs!).

After a couple minutes, add your ground beef (or venison).  Lightly brown the meat. 

Once the meat is cooked through, add your garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir it well. 

Add your broth and Worcestershire Sauce and bring the mixture to a low simmer.

In a separate container or bowl, combine the flour and water.  Shake/whisk until there are no lumps (these Blender Bottles are the bomb for mixing up flour and water without any lumps).  If you think there are lumps, just pour the mixture through a strainer to remove them before adding them to the pan.

Once the broth/meat mixture is simmering, whisk in your flour/water combo.  Keep stirring until it’s fully incorporated.  Let it simmer for 3-5 more minutes. It should be nicely thickened. 

Do a little taste test, and add addition salt and pepper as needed and depending on your preferred tastes. 

Serve over rice with a side of vegetables. 

Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

Ah, Friends! Happy Saturday! It’s another delicious week of what I have dubbed “Rhubarbpalooza”.  Yep, Rhubarbpalooza…it’s a thing…well, at least we’ve decided to make it a thing, lol 😉.  Come along with me and join in the fun!  Today, we’ve made Strawberry Rhubarb Pie! 

Feel free to use whatever pie crust recipe you’d like.  This is my favorite one.  I wish I knew where it came from.  It’s in my recipe collection on a photocopied page from a cookbook…but I don’t know which cookbook (maybe Betty Crocker??? IDK, sorry).  I’ve altered it a little over the years, though not too much, because, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. 

Similar to the Crisp recipe from last week, this is just the perfect combination of sweet from the strawberries and tart from the rhubarb. You just can’t go wrong with this combination.  Serve it warm out of the oven with a dollop of ice cream. Oh baby!

Happy Baking, my Friends!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

Yield: 1 8-9″ pie

Prep time: 20-30 minutes

Bake Time: 40-50 minutes

Pie Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 cups All-Purpose Flour (300 grams)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 TBSP White Sugar
  • 2/3 cup Butter, cut into smaller chunks and chilled (151 grams)
  • 2 TBSP Lemon Juice
  • 3-4 TBSP cold water

Filling Ingredients:

Directions for the Pie Crust:

(This is for an 8-9 inch, 2-crusted pie crust):

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Using a food processor (this is my go-to because it’s super-fast and I don’t have a pastry cutter. Use whatever you’d like to for this part though), blitz your flour, salt, and sugar.  Add your chunked butter, and blend it up until there are not more chunks of butter left.

Add the lemon juice and slowly dribble the cold water in, one tablespoon at a time. You don’t want it to be too wet.  If it comes clean from the sides of the bowl, then you’re good.  When it’s getting really close to being ready, I take it out of the food processor and use my hands so it doesn’t get too overworked and tough.

Divide the dough into 2 parts.  I like to do a 2/3 section for the bottom crust, and a 1/3 for the top.

Roll out the bottom crust so that it’s 2 inches larger than the pie pan, if you were to invert the pie pan on top of the rolled-out dough.  Gently place the crust in the pie pan (sometimes it helps if you fold the crust in fourths to move it, and then unfold it once it’s in the pan).

Directions for the filling:

In a medium bowl, combine your rhubarb and strawberries. Scoop half of the fruit into the pie pan. 

In another bowl, whisk your sugar, cardamom, and flour together.  Sprinkle half of this mixture over the top of the fruit.  Spoon the second half of the fruit over the flour mixture, and, again, sprinkle the second half of the flour mixture evenly over the newly added fruit. Spread the dollops of butter evenly over the mixture.

Roll out the remaining dough. You want this one to also overhang about 2 inches. Gently place the top crust over the filling.

Trim the overhanging crust dough, leaving about ½ an inch to seal it.  Seal it in whichever method you like, and cut a few slits in the pie crust so that it can vent while it bakes. 

I like to sprinkle just a little bit of sugar over the crust before sticking it in the oven, though this can make the crust a little darker as the sugar bakes, so be sure to keep an eye on it if you decide to do this step.

Cover the edges of the pie crust with aluminum foil or the nifty pie crust “shields”, if you have one.

Bake at 425 for 40-50 minutes, or until the crust turns a light brown color.  You’ll want to remove the aluminum foil or crust shield for the last 10 or so minutes of the bake.

Remove the pie from the oven, and let it cool some (15-20 minutes).

Serve it warm with ice cream or whipped cream.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Crisp

It’s the time of year to harvest your rhubarb, guys!!!  This is the first year I’m able to pick from our plants, and it’s been so exciting for me!  I love rhubarb!  I’ve decided to declare May as National Rhubarb Month.  Turns out there’s already a month designated to rhubarb: October…Here’s the thing though…rhubarb is harvested in the spring…so, October? Come on, People, lol 😊.

This beautiful, leafy bush with magically delicious, ruby-kissed stalks brings back so many memories of the years that we lived in Minnesota.  My parents would often make different desserts and coffee cakes, ice cream toppings and jams—so many options.  Today, I wanted to share a rhubarb crisp dessert that’s beautifully enhanced by some juicy strawberries. 

Strawberries and rhubarb go hand-in-hand, like cheese and macaroni, or peas and carrots, or Forrest and Jenny—they just belong together!  And then, of course, a little dollop of ice cream on a warm-out-of-the-oven crisp is just SO. MANY. YUMS!   

This is a pretty straight forward recipe.  I hope you’ll try it and enjoy, Friends!  Thanks for stopping by!

**This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. **

Strawberry-Rhubarb Crisp

Yield: 8 x 8 pan:  4-6 servings

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30-35 minutes



Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Chop the rhubarb and strawberries at about ½ inch intervals. In a medium bowl, toss the rhubarb, strawberries, ¼ cup flour, ⅓ cup white sugar, and cardamom.  Make sure all the fruit is well coated by the dry ingredients.

Grease an 8 x 8 baking dish.  Dump the above mixture into the greased pan and spread it out evenly.

In a separate bowl, mix the brown sugar, ½ cup flour, oatmeal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and butter. Mix it until you have a well blended crumbly mixture. 

Spread the crumbles over the fruit and bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.

Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly (5-10 minutes).

Serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream.