The JACCARD, my favorite kitchen tool. Tenderizes meat and poultry in minutes without additives.

When you push down the blades extend into the meat tenderizing without chemicals.
Some years ago I purchased my first Jaccard only to give it away to a visiting relative who fell in love with it after eating moist, tender, and juicy skinless boneless chicken breast we had prepared after using our Jaccard in the prep.

I am now on my third one over a span of more than 35 years!  It is one tool I would never want to be without.

So just what is a Jaccard?

It is a tool that safely extends 45 very sharp stainless steel blades 1" into any meat or poultry you choose.  It has a safe handle and there are three rows of fifteen blades.  It is dishwasher safe and had a self storage case.  The blades retreat unless appropriate pressure is applied and the cover is removed.

I love it because it decreases the cooking time I would estimate by at least a third and it retains moisture more readily due to a better absorption of marinade and a shorter cooking time.

Earlier in the week I used it to tenderize 1" thick USDA Prime sirloin steaks.  Even at a grade Prime not the tenderest of steaks.  After tenderizing both sides of the beef I marinaded in Sesame Asian dressing for about an hour in the refrigerator.

To cook I seared them atop the gas range in a grill pan turned to highest heat on the first side for 3- 4 minutes.  Next I turned them and placed the cast iron grill pan in a preheated 400 degree oven for 5-6 minutes.  I removed from the oven and covered for 5 minutes then served,  delicious.  Perfect medium as my husband likes!  More the taste and texture of a T-bone than a sirloin!

The menu was steak, baked potato, sliced tomato, and fresh sliced pears with walnuts and a drizzle of honey for dessert.

I purchased my most recent JACCARD  from and paid around $40.  I think it is well worth the investment.  They make great gifts and Christmas is just around the corner.  PS:  I DO NOT OWN STOCK AND AM NOT PAID FOR THIS ENDORSEMENT.  I just like the thing!


Fall Baking Begins wih Mother's Vintage Oatmeal Cake with Broiled Coconut Pecan Topping and Fresh Baked Pear and Pecan Bread

Mother's Hand Written Recipe.
Today was the first baking I have done for awhile and it bears the flavors of fall.  Mother made this  vintage recipe for Oatmeal Cake for years and it was my favorite as a child.  The one I always asked for!  It is dense and moist and the broiled pecans and coconut topping are way beyond my candy with cake?

This broiled coconut pecan topping is perfect.
Mother's Vintage Oatmeal Cake Ingredients:

1 C. rolled oats
1 1/2 C. boiling water
1 C. brown sugar
1 C. sugar
1 stick (1/2 C. ) soft butter
3 eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 1/3 C. flour
1 t. salt
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. soda
1/2 C. raisins (optional)
1/2 C. chopped pecans (optional)

Broiled Coconut Pecan Topping Ingredients:

2 sticks butter
1/4 C. cream or evaporated milk
2 C. brown sugar
2 C. sweetened flaked coconut
2 C. coarse chop pecans

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and place the rack so the top of the cake is in the center of the oven.  Butter and flour a 9" x 13" baking pan and set aside.

Pour the boiling water over the oats and leave to sit for 20 minutes.  Cream together the sugars and butter in a large mixing bowl. Next stir in the eggs and vanilla until well combined.

Using another bowl whisk together the dry ingredients and add 1/2 to the batter.  Add 1/2 of the oat mixture and stir just until combined.  Add the rest of the flour then the res of the oats stirring well.  If desired add the nuts and raisins just until combined.  Bake 30-40 minutes.

Meanwhile combine the topping ingredients in a heavy bottomed saucepan.  Stir as you bring to a boil.  Boil 1 minute and remove from the heat. 

When you remove the cake from the oven spread evenly with the warm topping.  Place the cake under the broiler for about 2 minutes until bubbling!  Do not walk away.  Watch closely as not to burn.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  This cake travels well and is always a hit.

Beautiful Fresh Pear and Pecan quick bread.
I saw this recipe on the Iowa Housewife blog and had to try it.  It came out beautifully and is delicious!  Love something a little different and this did hit the spot. I did adapt the recipe a bit as one of our sons does not care for the flavor of nutmeg.  I used ginger instead and it was great with the pears.

Wish I had a jar of my Grandmother's Pear Honey to slather onto this beautiful bread!
Fresh Pear and Pecan Quick Bread Ingredients:

2 lg. eggs
1 C. sugar
3/4 C. sour cream
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 t. fresh grated lemon zest
2 C. flour
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. soda
1/4 t. salt
1/2 t. cinnamon
good pinch of ginger (or nutmeg if you prefer)
1 1/2 C., 2 medium fresh pears, peeled, cored, and chopped.
1 C. rough chopped pecans

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees  F. and butter and flour a 5" x 9" loaf pan and set it aside.

Beat the eggs in a large bowl.  Add sugar, oil, sour cream, and lemon zest mixing altogether well.  Add all of the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  Stir in the pears and pecans.  Spoon into the loaf pan and spread evenly.  Bake 60-70 minutes until it tests clean.  Cool 10 minutes and remove from the pan.  Cool completely before wrapping tightly in a large plastic bag.  Store in the refrigerator if you have any left.  Most of mine was gone after one setting!


Restoring a Vintage Cast Iron Roasting Pan

Vintage 12" x 19" cast iron roasting pan after scrubbing and drying.
Last night my husband brought home quite a lovely surprise compliments of our good friends the Linton's.  It seems Mike discovered a bit of treasure he thought I might appreciate and indeed I do!  I have a better than average collection of cast iron cook wear but had never seen a cast iron roasting pan, and it is a dandy!  Measuring 12" x 19" and 3 1/4" deep.  I can see 2-3 hens sitting pretty atop a bed of root vegetables, a beautiful ham, and a turkey, standing rib roast etc. in it's future!

The first step in it's new life with us was to scrub away the debris with a brush, coarse salt, and hot water.  I lined my white porcelain sinks with towels as not to beat them up in the process.

After preheating my oven to 200 degrees F.  I placed the damp roasting pan in the oven and set the timer for 40 minutes to ensure it was well dried before seasoning.  I often dry my cast iron by placing it on the gas burner of my store a few minutes to ensure it is really dry.  JUST DO NOT WALK AWAY IF YOU DO THIS!

Clean, dried, and seasoned, ready to go for years more service.
Upon removing from the warm oven I seasoned well with vegetable oil and wiped well with paper towels.  She is ready to go!  Thank you again to the Linton's.