Ranch Hamburger Buns

Ahhh, summer is almost here!  In the school district where I work, we are down to the last of school before summer vacation.  Among other things, summer at our house means barbecue season. And one of the best ways to start the season out is with a basic, juicy burger.  My mouth is watering thinking about burgers with cheese, caramelized onions, saute'd mushrooms, bacon, tomatoes, lettuce, pickles....oh my.  When I am going to the bother of adding all those delightful toppings to my burger, I like to make my own hamburger buns.  This recipe came with a bread-maker that I had years ago. The buns are delicious, and hearty enough to stand up to all those toppings.  I've adapted it to regular baking. If you have any left over, they make wonderful sandwiches too!

Ranch Hamburger Buns
1/2 c. water
1 Tblsp. yeast
4 1/2 tsp. sugar
1/2 c. plain yogurt
1 egg
3/4 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 Tblsp. ranch dressing mix
1 1/2 tsp. salt
3 c. flour

Mix water, yeast and sugar. Let sit for a few minutes until yeast starts to bubble.  Mix in remaining ingredients, kneading well.  Let rise until double.  Punch down. Divide into 18 balls.  Smash each ball on greased cookie sheet. Let rise again until each bun is about double in size.  Bake at 400 degrees for 8-12 minutes.

Cool Lime Pie

Dear Reader,

My mom made pie. Every weekend, she made pie. It seemed that every Sunday evening when I was growing up, neighbors would "happen” to stop by, and Mom always fed them pie.  It’s no wonder I like to make desserts for my family.  I try to limit myself to 1-2 times a month, with our Sunday dinner, because I seem to have the sweetest tooth and really don’t need those desserts on my hips.  

This past Sunday I prepared a taco bar for my family dinner.  For dessert, we enjoyed Cool Lime Pie.  This is reminiscent of Mom’s Lemonade Pie, except lime flavor, which everyone knows goes well with any type of Mexican food. 

Cool Lime Pie

2 pkgs. cream cheese, softened
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
1 12 oz. can frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
16 oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed
3 graham cracker crusts

Beat cream cheese and milk.  Stir in limeade and whipped topping.  Add green food coloring.  Pour into crusts and freeze.

Often, if I don't have a huge crowd coming for dinner, and do not want 3 whole pies, I will make up some of these cute individual serving size jars.  I mix a little melted butter and sugar with some graham cracker crumbs, press some in the bottom of a half-pint jar, pour in some filling, and top it off with a few more crumbs to make it look pretty.

 photo signature.jpg