Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

A Summer Supper for Company

I love summer food
fresh vegetables and fruits
grilled meats

Last night we had company for dinner . . . 
Friend Shirley Ann and her Husband Jack

We were going out for dinner but I had a chicken and some corn
so we invited them over

With temps in the triple digits it's too hot to eat outside
(which is one of the pleasures of summer)
And so inside we were!

In the dining room  . . . 
with a lace cloth, the Spode Blue Room, napkins in silver rings
And a centerpiece of garden hydrangeas!

A summer meal for sure!

Mashed potatoes
(served with gravy)

Fresh Amish corn on the cob

And iron skillet fried chicken

Oh, and there were slices of garden tomatoes too!

All served family style
Chicken in the middle so everyone could help themselves to their favorite piece
While the other dishes were passed
And passed more than once!


A crumble
This one is blueberry!
A favorite and easy dessert -- fruit, sugar, a bit of cornstarch to thicken, some lemon zest and a tot of brandy with a topping of brown sugar, flour and butter.     All baked until the top is brown and the fruit is hot and bubbly!

Best served with cream
We chose whipped rather than ice or poured
It melted into the warm crumble.
Oh, my, was it delicious!

Monday, July 16, 2018


Linderhof was built in the 20s
In the back hall, off the kitchen,
there was an


And ice was delivered regularly -- in the back door (up three steps) and the ice was put in top.

We even had a drain to drain the water from the icebox.

And icebox is what I call the box in the kitchen that keeps food cool.
Because Mom did
Because Grandma did 

Mom never had an "icebox" -- always an electric cooling box
But Grandma did, I am sure, for she was born in 1897
And even though she was old fashioned and called her cooling box
an icebox, I never asked her when she got her first refrigerator!

At Linderhof, I am sure in the late 20s, that there was a fridge . . . 

But whether it remained in the back hall
or got upgraded to the kitchen I don't know!

I do know that in the late 40s
After the war
the owners of Linderhof
updated the house
the light fixtures in all the rooms
And the kitchen went from an unfitted one to
cabinets and the sink was built in
They were wood
And they were PINK!

I wonder if the fridge after that remodel was a pink one!
I'll never know!

Our "icebox" is a big stainless steel one

A French door one
because that's the only way I could get the doors opened
Space is tight in the kitchen!

Back in the day, when Linderhof was young
"icebox" cooking became all the rage
Cookies and cakes

I like icebox cookies -- you can slice and bake
as many as you need
a couple for afternoon tea
A plateful to take somewhere or if you have company for tea

Some of my favorite "Icebox cookies"

Lemon and Basil "Slice and Bakes"
(the 21st century name for "Icebox Cookies!)

Chocolate Shot Icebox Cookies

Orange Ginger Icebox Cookies

And then there are cakes . . . 

Chocolate Mocha Icebox Cake
(I'm particularly fond of this one because it is round and really looks like a cake)

Chocolate Eclair Cake
(Made in a 9 x 13 pan)

Icebox cakes are easy and when summer temps soar are a good dessert to fix for you don't have to heat up the oven!

They're layers of cookies or graham crackers which soften in the icebox since they are enrobed in
a creamy pudding.    After a night in the "icebox", the soften crackers or cookies really taste like cake!

They're old recipes, their icebox desserts . . . dating from that 1920s icebox that once lived at Linderhof.     They were all the rage and housewives proudly served this new type of dessert.

Why "icebox", I wonder . . . for by the time they came along, they were refrigerators and not iceboxes.    Perhaps because icebox seems more descriptive.

Whatever the reason, they are delicious and cool desserts and we love making them
especially in the summer
at Linderhof.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Special Company for Lunch

It was the July Lunch Bunch Lunch
plus one
A very special one

Internet friend Connie came to Linderhof
to lunch!

Earlier this week, we had no air
it wasn't a simple fix but a new unit was needed
The install date was the week of July 16

Thus, when I did the final planning for lunch
it was with the idea of no air conditioning
That there would only be fans

But Linderhof was built in the 20s
When there was no air
Taking a page from some of the early owners of Linderhof
I decided to do a summer ladies lunch
A luncheon that perhaps Mrs. Gunn 
(who lived at Linderhof in the late 20s)
might have served to her "society" friends

The good news, however, is that we got moved up
and yesterday our new air was installed
Working overtime far into the night
by morning, it was "normal" at Linderhof
Cool and dry!

For that I was grateful,
I went ahead, however, with my summer 20s lunch

A tablecloth, flowers, silver  and crystal on the table

Aynsley Pembroke
Jim's grandmother's cutlery
Our French goblets

A bouquet of stargazer lilies as the centerpiece
Which picked up the pink of the Pembroke

A picture of Linderhof taken in 1924
with the menu on the back

A cool lunch for a hot day

Cool and Creamy tomato basil soup
Homecanned tomatoes and garden basil pureed and chilled
Heavy cream added as well as a generous sprinkle of salt and a grind of pepper

A trio salad plate
meat (chicken salad - a simple one, shredded chicken, thin sliced red onion, a good palmful of garden tarragon and half mayonnaise and half sour cream, salt and pepper)
vegetable (spring mix, tomatoes and homemade poppyseed dressing)
fruit (strawberry cranberry jello salad -- jello salads are so 20s!)

The coffee service
Aynsley Pembroke -- some pieces from the turn of the 20th century while other pieces are from the turn of the 21st century
(Can you spot the difference?)

Dessert was chocolate mocha icebox cake

It was wonderful conversation around the luncheon table
and after a tour of Linderhof, Connie headed back north.

We met for tea in Kansas City in June and I was so glad
she could come and share lunch with us.

I've met the best people because of
Lines from Linderhof!

Strawberry Cranberry Jello Salad

1 1/2 c. fresh or frozen cranberries
2 c. diced fresh strawberries
1/2 c. sugar
2 c. boiling water
3 (3 oz) packages strawberry Jello
2 c. cranberry juice, chilled
8 oz. can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 c. diced celery

Process cranberries in a food processor until coarsely chopped, stopping once to scrape down sides.

Stir together cranberries, strawberries and sugar in a medium bowl.

Stir together 2 cups boiling water and jello in a large bowl, stirring 2 minutes or until jello dissolves.    Stir in juice, and chill 30 min or until consistency of unbeaten egg whites.     Stir in cranberry mixture, pineapple and celery.     Pour mixture into lightly greased 9 x 13 pan.    Cover and chill 8 hours or until firm.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

A Return To Sunday Dinner

Our church services are early -- 9 a.m.
Even after a bit of a nosh and fellowship, it's usually 1100 or so when we head home
For a long time we joined friends at noon for a restaurant meal
But we no longer do
Two weeks ago, when we had a "I don't care, you choose".  "I don't care, you choose", "I don't care, you choose."
kind of conversation after church on the way home as to what we want
to do for Sunday Dinner

I decided that Sunday that we would once again have a real
Sunday Dinner
at home!

In the dining room!

So last Sunday, I set the table in the dining room with my Grandmother's china, Jim's Grandmother's cutlery, napkins in silver rings
And made dinner!

To serve family style:

My other grandmother's coleslaw
(a creamy variety -- made with just cabbage!)

Fried chicken.    A whole chicken, which I cut up, which means that there is a wishbone
and therefore one more piece of chicken!
We each had a breast!

And corn on the cob finished out the meal.

A truly summer Sunday dinner!

I'm already planning on this week's dinner --
a roast, I think!

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy Fourth

We at Linderhof

Wish you and yours

A Happy Fourth of July!