lunches, Recipes

Hicka-Mucka Bobs (Recipe)

By Alice Workman

This easy-to-make recipe has only two ingredients, but is a nice blend of spicy and sweet. Make a plateful for your Memorial Day celebration lunch, or stick a few in a baggie in a child’s school lunch for a nice change from the usual tuna sandwich.


(Jicama Kabobs)HickaMuckaBobs (Jicama Kabobs)

  • Jicama
  • Summer sausage
  • Bamboo skewers

Peel jicama, and remove the wrapper from the summer sausage.  Cut both into 1” cubes.  Thread alternately onto skewers.

These are best when served within 24 hours, otherwise the flavors blend too much.


  • For safety sake, don’t use skewers for very young children.
  • Cover the tip of each skewer with one last piece of jicama, to avoid having it poke through your lunch bag.
  • If necessary, before adding food, cut the bamboo skewers a little shorter so
    they’ll fit in your baggie/container, or use toothpicks instead.
  • To avoid skewering yourself, place the food cube on the counter and poke the skewer down into it. Then you can pick it up and wiggle it into place.  Don’t try to jam the skewer into food that is being held in your other hand!
  • Make sure the jicama cubes are roughly the same size as, or a little bigger than, the sausage, or the meat flavor will overwhelm the jicama.
Allergies, Chocolate, Dairy-free, Desserts, Recipes, Sharing

Recipe: Milk-free Fudge for Christmas

I came up with this recipe last Christmas when my daughter felt left out because “everyone” got to have fudge but her. (Never mind that she had more non-fudge goodies than Mrs. Claus’ candy kitchen!) I am sharing the recipe here so that other children (of all ages) can also have their fudge and eat it, too.


By Alice Workman

fabric snowmen
1 C cocoa
3/4 C sugar
1 C brown sugar
2 TBS flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 C butter*
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 C walnuts or pecans (opt)

In a medium saucepan, mix together cocoa, sugar, brown sugar, flour, baking soda and salt.

Add in eggs and mix a bit (parts will still be dry.)

Add butter, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly. When butter is melted and mixture starts to bubble, remove from heat. Add in vanilla. Pour into greased, 8″ square pan. Press nuts (chopped or whole) into top, if desired. Cool.

*Although many people who can’t have dairy are okay with butter, some are not. To make this completely dairy free, use coconut oil instead, and refrigerate the fudge before cutting into squares.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good fudge!  

Baking, Breads, Recipes

Got Pumpkin?

PumpkinsPumpkin Muffins

Makes 1 dozen muffins

1 C sugar
1/4 C oil
1/4 C melted butter
2 eggs
1 C pumpkin, cooked and mashed
1 C flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp each cloves & nutmeg
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 C chopped nuts (opt.)

Preheat oven to 450°. Grease muffin tin, or line it with paper baking cups.

In a medium bowl, beat sugar, oil and butter. Add eggs and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in pumpkin.

In a separate bowl, mix together remaining ingredients. Add to sugar mixture and stir just until mixed.

Fill muffin cups about 2/3 full, then bake for 20 minutes.

*Note: you can double this recipe to make three loaves of pumpkin bread, instead of muffins. Grease the loaf pans well, and bake for 60 minutes at 325°, or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean.

Desserts, ice cream, kitchen, Quick and easy, Recipes, Sharing

Fabulicious Root Beer Ice Cream

Ooohs, aaahs and mmmmmmms filled my kitchen this afternoon, finally broken by my teenager’s question, “Do we have to save some for Pez?”  J.S., who was asking, had also been the one to make the ice cream we were enjoying.  Unlike the times when he helps make other food in the kitchen, he volunteered to do it.  Practically begged.

Pez would be home from kindergarten in about 15 minutes – plenty of time to finish off the rest of the ice cream and hide the evidence.  Then again, he’d probably smell it the minute he came in. Darn.

So I did the grownup thing and said that we had to share.(Too bad I didn’t think of just airing the house out.)

Root beer ice cream became an instant favorite at our house after I first experimented with making it. I had a tiny vial of root beer extract that had been sitting on my shelf since I’d picked up at Wal-mart the Christmas before, and thought that instead of spending time making root beer and ice cream for floats I would try combining the two.

It was a hit.

Unfortunately, that was the last time I ever saw root beer extract for sale in our town.


Finally, during my vacation in Utah last month, I hit the jackpot. I was at the grocery store with my mom, and happened to look up and see a shelf full of beautiful bottles of root beer extract. Bless the Utahans.

I quickly grabbed four of them to pack home (bottles, not Utahans), crossing my fingers that they wouldn’t leak all over the books that nearly filled the rest of my suitcase.

I hope they last until my next visit.

(The bottles, I mean. There’s no way the books will last that long.)

Next on my list is to come up with a dairy-free version.  I generally use coconut milk for dairy-free ice cream, but I don’t think coconut and root beer would make a good combination.  When I find something that works, I’ll let you know.

Meanwhile, I’ll take pity on you and quit my rambling to share the actual recipe.

Warning:  do not attempt to make this unless you have access to a ready supply of root beer extract.  You have been warned.

Fabulicious Root Beer Ice Cream

  • 3 C whole milk* (or 2 C milk and 1 C cream)
  • 3/4 C sugarCuisinart ice cream maker
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 tsp root beer extract

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, and mix well. Freeze according to your
ice cream maker’s instructions.

(I use the Cuisinart ice cream maker pictured at right, which
I highly recommend.  The ice cream is ready to eat in
about half an hour, and no
rock salt or ice are needed.)

*I use raw, organic whole milk, which has an abundance of cream.

Have a great summer!

Chocolate, Dairy-free, kitchen, Quick and easy, Recipes, Saving money, Sharing

Dairy-free Hot Fudge Sauce

This chocolatey recipe is quick, easy, inexpensive and tastes better than store-bought versions.  What more can you ask?

Dairy-free Hot Fudge Sauce

1/2 C cocoa
2 C sugar
1/8 tsp salt

Image by hakze at

1 C boiling water
1 tsp vanilla

Mix cocoa, sugar and salt in a medium sized saucepan. (Don’t use a small pan, as the mixture rises up when it boils.)  Add boiling water and stir well. Boil 2-3 minutes.

Cool, then add vanilla.  Store in refrigerator.

Note: Be aware that this thickens as it cools. Choose a shorter boiling time if you want a thin sauce to mix in milk for chocolate milk, or boil it a bit longer for a thick sauce to spoon over ice cream or fruit.

kitchen, Quick and easy, Recipes, Sharing

Quick and Easy Recipe: Spencer’s Special

This is a quick and easy main dish for busy days, and is one of my family’s favorites.  I have a plastic “bagel knife” that my younger children use to slice the meat, and sometimes they peel the sweet potatoes as well.  I like to serve it with applesauce or fresh fruit.

Spencer’s Special

1 pkg Polish Kielbasa
2-3 sweet potatoes Keilbasa Dinner

Slice kielbasa, and put in a large skillet over low heat.  Peel sweet potatoes, and slice thinly.  Add to skillet, and put on lid.  Cook for ten minutes, stirring a couple of times as it cooks.  Avoid stirring too often, or the sweet potatoes will fall apart.

Remove lid. At this point, you can add in green beans or bits of kale, if you like,  for added color and nutrition.  Continue cooking without the lid for for a few minutes until the meat is browned.  Serve.


Allergies, Gluten-free, kitchen, Recipes

Gluten-free Recipe: Rice Tortillas

This tortilla recipe was created by my dear friend, Kendel Milburn.

They take a bit of work, but they are delicious–and well worth the effort if you can’t have gluten in your diet. I like to add a touch of garlic powder to the dough, but then, I like to add garlic to almost all of my non-dessert recipes!

Rice Tortillas

rolling pin
Photo by Shut Down at


Makes 8 small tortillas

  • 1 C long grain, whole white rice, cooked
  • 1/4 C water
  • 1 TBS + 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 to 1 1/4 C white rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • waxed paper
  • extra oil

Preheat a skillet.

Put  cooked rice, oil and water in a blender, and blend until creamed.

Spoon into a bowl.  Add rice flour and salt, and mix to make a soft dough.

Pinch off a small ball of dough (about the size of a ping pong ball). Put between two well-oiled sheets of wax paper, and roll out to about 1/8″ thick.

Carefully remove top paper, and turn upside down onto hot skillet (so that the remaining piece of wax paper is now on top of the cooking tortilla). Cook for about a minute, then remove the other piece of paper and flip the tortilla to cook the other side.

Repeat with remaining dough.