There’s a game called Desert Island. The basic set of rules state: “You’re stranded on a desert island. You can only have three (or one or two) books with you. What are they?”

The rules can vary and one of the variations I’m doing is Top Three Books. I chose to do a themed version of it and choose my top three cookbooks

My First Baking Book

My First Baking Book (1)

Author: Helen Drew

Copyright date: 1991

Amazon Link:

Why: Purely sentimental reasons for bringing this book along. I did a whole post on this book. You read it here [insert link]. I fondly remember reading through this cookbook multiple times, childish fantasies filling my head about making the cookies within. To date, the only recipe I’ve actually make from this book is peanut butter cookie recipe. (My dad’s favorite!)

TM 10-412 War Department Technical Manual: Army Recipes, August 1946


Author: War Department

Copyright date: August 1946; post-WWII, and one year before the War Department became the Department of Defense; possibly the last version of this book.

Why: I’m fascinated by the quantities: Apple Crisp for 100 (40 lbs. fresh apples; 1 oz. nutmeg; 3 lbs. sugar, granulated; 7 ½ lbs. sugar, brown; 4 lbs. of flour; 4 lbs. butter).

I’m also fascinated by the hardware use: Mess Kit Spoons, No. 56 dippers, and No. 10 can. I wonder what the equivalent sizes are. I’ve been researching by haven’t found much. This book is very interesting to look through. It gives you an idea of what the food options were for soldiers during World War II. If this book could be converted to modern measurements, it could really work for a caterer. And my husband made a good point: if I was stranded on a desert island, there may be recipes in here for the tropical fruits I would find.

More information from the Library of Congress:

The Taste of Home Cookbook: Timeless Recipes from Trusted Home Cooks: from the World’s #1 Cooking Magazine


Editors: Taste of Home editors

Copyright date: 2006

Amazon link:

Why: This is a wonderful beginner’s cookbook! It would make a great gift for newlyweds or anyone who is interested in learning how to cook and bake. It has substitution charts and equivalent charts on the inner front and back covers, Kitchen Basics chapter, and each chapter, especially the meat ones, contain cooking charts and helpful hints. Lots of variety in the recipes! This would also be a good book to study.

© Cori Large Feb 12, 2016


Blog Links

Here is my January 2016 list of interesting blog posts:

Blog Related:

8 Things Bloggers Wished Their Friends Knew

Cooking Related:

Mason Jar Food: 23 Healthy Mason Jar Meals You Can Make in Minutes

Ham & Cheese Ore-Ida Totchos

Making Your Own Brown Sugar

Finance Related:

I retired at 30. The best part isn’t leisure — it’s freedom.

How I left my job and built my online business

Knitting Related:

In a Knitting Club, I found a cure for selfishness and cynicism

Planner Related:

Do we need to spend money to plan?

Paper diaries outsmart electronic age

Make It Monday: Three Ways to Bind Your Own Planner

My Patronus is a Filofax

Surprising Day Planner Secrets

Why I Write It Down

What is Working Right Now

Free Planner Printable

Combining Bullet Journal w/ Filofax

School/Student/Education Related:

6 Struggles of Grad School Students You Need to Understand (and Accept)

Writing Related:

The Tortured Art of Writing


Blog Links

I started compiling links of blog posts that I wanted to save in case I wanted to reference them again. I thought I’d share them with you. Hopefully, you’ll find something interesting to read.

I wasn’t planning on sorting into categories, but I have done and they will vary by month.



Spice Cabinet Update

In a previous post, I showed off how I turned an entire cabinet beside my stove into my Spice Rack.

My husband and I love to cook, and we have just about every spice available. This does not include spice blends and mixes. I arranged this cabinet a little over a year ago, but our spice collection has grown since then.

Over the weekend, we bought two 3-tier all-purpose storage racks from The Home Depot.

We attached them to the inside of our kitchen equipment pantry.


Here’s a side view.


All of our less frequently used spices went here. And the cabinet became where our most used spices were stored.


The breakdown of the number of spices we have are:

*47 on the pantry door

*31 in the cabinet

*15 in the reserve.

The reserve spices as ones that are replacements others when we run out, i.e. curry powder, paprika, dill.

We’re considering getting a third, but we shall see. The equipment pantry is very fragrant now.

© Cori Large October 29, 2015

Kitchen Binder Set Up

Everyone who has small kitchen appliances has the Users Manuals that come with them piling up in a drawer or somewhere getting lost.

When my husband and I lived in our apartment, we didn’t have a lot of space in general and only had four drawers in our kitchen.

I took an old three ring binder, a permanent marker, some top loading page protectors, and gathered all the users manuals.

Kitchen Binder (1)

Each page protector was labeled with each appliance type: deep fryer, cutlery, cake pop maker, etc.

Kitchen Binder (5)

The manuals were then inserted into their respective sleeves, alphabetized, and put into the binder. It has done wonderfully and keeps everything sorted and in one spot. I keep the binder with all my cookbooks.

Kitchen Binder (4) Kitchen Binder (3)

Where the binder lives:

Kitchen Binder (2)

Please feel free to use this if you think it will help keep you organized.


© Cori Large January 2, 2015

Eat Like a Hobbit!

In JRR Tolkien’s books The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, The Silmarillion, the Hobbit feeding schedule is referred to many times.

I thought it would be fun to create my own restaurant based on that feeding schedule. I am taking liberties with the types of food offered. While the standard Middle Earth/Shire fare consists of mainly rich English dishes, some of mine will be a lighter foodstuffs.

For those that object to that, please feel free to stop reading now and head towards these two websites: and

7 AM Breakfast

Muffins & Pastries

Bacon, egg, and/or sausage butties

Oatmeal with fresh fruit

Drinks: tea, coffee, orange juice

9 AM Second Breakfast

Full English breakfast

Scramble of the Day

Drinks: tea, coffee, orange juice

11 AM Elevenses

Eggs Benedict

Quiche of the Day

Pork Pie

Drinks: tea, coffee, orange juice

1 PM Luncheon

Curry chicken pasties

Roasted rabbit or beef

Roasted vegetable soup

Fruit and cheese platter

Drinks: tea, ales, mead

4 PM Afternoon Tea

Scones, seed cake, pastries

Cucumber sandwiches

Sausage rolls

Sliced fruit

Drinks: tea (obviously) and coffee

6 PM Dinner/Supper

Roast Duck

Garlic & Rosemary Roasted leg of lamb

Aparagus or crunchy green beans

Roasted root vegetables or roast potatoes

Heavy brown bread with GOOD butter

Drinks: tea, coffee, ales, mead, beer

8 PM Dessert

Chocolate cake


Fruit and cheese platter

Drinks: tea, coffee, hot chocolate, mulled wine, ciders

© Cori Large January 1, 2015

March 2015 Meat Haul

Back Story: There’s a local meat market that does really good bulk deals. My husband and I had gotten a few of the smaller deals when we lived in our apartment, and joked that one day we were save up for Meat Deal #8.

After we moved into our house, he brought it up again. Problem. Meat Deal #8 equaled out to 120 pounds of meat products. The freezer in our refrigerator would only hold a small portion of that order, and that’s if meat was the only thing in the freezer.

So we saved up and bought a 10 cubic foot chest freezer. And a week later, I had placed the order (you need to give 24 hours’ notice) and set the pickup time for 8 am Saturday morning.

Just so everyone knows how much meat we’re dealing with, Meat Deal #8 consists of:

8 lb.s T-Bone steaks                                                                        8 lbs. Top Sirloin Steaks

8 lbs. cubed steak                                                                            8 lbs. ground beef

8 lbs. pork steaks                                                                             8 lbs. country style pork ribs

8 lbs. assorted pork chops                                                            6 lbs. Boston butt pork roast

3 lbs. rolled sausage                                                               5 lbs. chicken wings or split breasts

5 lbs. chicken drumsticks or thighs                                            5 lbs. smoked sausage

3 lbs. hot dogs                                                                                   3 lbs. bologna

3 lbs. of bacon

AND!!! 1-40 lb. box of chicken leg quarters comes FREE with Meat Deal #8.

It took about 2 hours to break everything down and repackage it in more manageable quantities. Here’s what we ended up with:

8 bags of cubed steak (2 steaks per bag)

5 pkgs of ground beef (1.75 lbs. per pkg)

7 bags of T-bone steaks (2 steaks per bag)

5 Top Sirloin steaks (individually packaged)

4 pkgs of bologna

3 bags of chicken drumsticks (5 drumsticks per bag)

12 bags of chicken leg quarters (2 legs per bag)

3 bags of chicken wings (5 wings per bag)

4 pkgs of hot dogs

5 pkgs of bacon

8 bags of boneless pork ribs (3 ribs per bag)

2-3 lb. Boston butt pork roasts (individually packaged)

7 bags of pork chops (2 chops per bag)

7 bags of pork steaks (2 steaks per bag)

5 pkgs of smoked sausage

Additional meats that are in the chest freezer, but not part of this meat haul:

1.5 lbs. ground beef

2 rolls of Jimmy Dean sausage meat

25 lbs. of boneless skinless chicken breasts

25 lbs. of chicken tenders

The whole point of this exercise is to try to buy meat twice a year. I’ve typed up a complete inventory sheet and we’ll be using that to keep track of what meat we use and enjoy eating. I do know we’ll have to supplement chicken breasts and ground beef most likely.

Here’s the video link: March 2015 Meat Haul if you’d like to see all the meat before it was broken up.

© Cori Large March 11, 2015

Musings Links

Musings from A Head Without A Thought

Great Travel Destinations for Writer’s (Writer’s Digest)

10 Things for Every Writer’s Bucket List (from Writer’s Digest)

The Ideal Journal


Saving for Retirement

Clothesline Update #1

Bookworm Bragging Rights!!!

I see the Light at the end of the Tunnel!

My Very First Pound Cake

Important realization and I need to brag on myself for a minute

Adventures in Baking: Cake Pops!

Cooking Observations

New Term: Post Graduation Panic

Adventures in Cooking: New Way for Cinnamon Rolls

Admitted Defeat

Adventures in Cooking: Curried Chicken Meatballs

Organizing My Spice Cabinet

Clothes Steaming on the Line

Fun College Savings Ideas!!!

What Post-Secondary Degree Really Should Mean!


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