Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Some memorable muffins from The Little Pear Tree that Could

We guarded them and hoarded them, but the time arose when we had to part with those last two pears from our serendipitous tree.

Bringing in a pear crop from this newly planted little gem was our most delightful gardening surprise of the summer. We had expected the peaches at last to pour in by the bucketfuls, but we had thought the pears were another year or two in the making.

Not only did we start, some weeks back, spotting pear after pear on its branches, the fruit were amazingly tasty. In an earlier column I mentioned learning to ripen them in a paper bag. The dishes that have been prepared from the pear tree's yield have been fabulous, but now the time arose for the pears' last hurrah.

A wonderful little recipe that I'd clipped from an old Taste of Home magazine brought the solution to how to bake those last pear morsels. The pears were enormous in size, so even though the recipe called for about six medium ones, cutting up the two I had remaining easily produced four cups chopped, peeled, ripe pears that the recipe specified.

The cinnamony kitchen smells that emerged when I prepared those Pecan-Pear Muffins brought in a hint of fall (even as tenaciously as we're trying to hold on to summer) and a reminder that the dishes of this current season ultimately will give way to harvest-themed treats such as baked apples and pumpkin everything.

But in the meantime, thank-yous were in order for the Little Pear Tree That Could, with visions of summer 2011 that might even bring more and more.

Pecan-Pear Muffins

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar (I use sugar substitute)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt (I use salt substitute)
2 eggs (I use egg substitute)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups chopped peeled ripe pears (about 6 medium)
1 cup chopped pecans

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In another bowl combine the eggs, oil, and vanilla; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in the pears and pecans. Fill paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick emerges clean. Cool for 5 minutes before you remove from pans to wire racks. Makes about 2 dozen.

No comments:

Post a Comment