Tag Archives: Vose Favorite

Mustard Sauce

12 Apr

Ok, before you cringe and make a face and wonder what in the WORLD mustard sauce is….I encourage you to take  a deep breath and read on. It’s delicious and the perfect condiment for your Easter ham. To be fair, as a little kid, this was not my favorite recipe. I wasn’t a big mustard person. But I had one of those food epiphanies about mustard (also had a similar experience with countless other fantastic foods with a list too long to put in a blog post…) and I encourage anyone to give this a try. Even if you look at mustard and go “meh”…this isn’t so overwhelmingly mustardy and it’s the perfect tang to go with a juicy ham. Just try it. Ok? You promise? Ok!

This is actually similar to a hollandaise sauce in that there’s butter involved and you do a lot of stirring. Put on some music, some Downton Abbey, or make sure you have other folks in the kitchen to harass while stirring. That’s how I cope. You may have a different coping mechanism.


  • 4 Tbsp dry mustard
  • 1/2 c. of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. milk (skim if you’re a cool kid…just putting that out there)
  • 1/2 c. vinegar
  • Butter the size of an egg. (Really. The size of an egg. This is as the recipe dictates. No more, no less. Egg size.)
How to Make:
Add your dry mustard and sugar together in a medium-sized mixing bowl until they’re thoroughly intermingled. Otherwise known as ‘mixed’. I like using other words. As you’re probably well aware.

Moving on! Take your two eggs and beat them! (Not like that.) Beat them until you’re satisfied they can’t be beaten anymore…and then add them to your mustard/sugar concoction. (I hope your egg beater is as hysterical as this one.)

Now add in the milk and vinegar. Stir…stir…stir.

Now…the butter. I know, the size of an egg?! What?! So I grabbed an egg and measured. It’s ABOUT 3.5 Tbsp of butter – as you can see in my picture. Perhaps you have bigger or smaller eggs, but I’d say 3.5 Tbsp should be approximately correct. I sliced up the butter into small pieces to aid in the melting/boiling process.

Pour your mixture into a saucepan and bring it to a boil on low/medium heat. You cannot stop stirring. CANNOT! Ok, perhaps to scratch your nose or give a high five…but that’s it. No excuses. Stir baby stir!

When it comes to a full boil, give it about 20 or so seconds before removing it from the heat and letting it cool to room temperature. You’ll see that the sauce has really thickened up at this point and it smells pretty dang good. If you’re into buttery mustard (Which I think you will be after tasting it…if you aren’t already).

We pour this into a gravy boat for serving and keep in the refrigerator prior to and after serving if needed. It can be reheated easily prior to eating and can be served warm or cold. It does only keep well for a day or so, but we usually go through the majority at Easter dinner (which usually involves 4-7 hearty servings total). Unless it’s just you enjoying this sauce all by your lonesome, you shouldn’t have too much leftover.

I hope you give it a try! It’s delicious with ham, but could be great with a chicken breast too I suppose.

Please let me know what you think if you do try this or any of the other recipes I’ve posted thus far! I love to hear your comments (even if they’re making fun of me…I can take it)!


Esther’s Lemon Poppyseed Bread

8 Apr

Back to a “Vose Favorite” recipe – this is my great-grandma Esther’s recipe…one of my holiday favorites. We have this bread at Christmas and Easter, almost every year. It’s always a hit – I don’t think there’s anyone who doesn’t like it (at least in my family). You can see the recipe card has gotten some use over the years!

It’s quick and simple to whip up too, usually made the night before the day of the ‘big meal’.

Ingredients: (Makes 2 loaves)

  • 1 package of Duncan Hines lemon cake mix (this is the brand we usually use, but I’m sure any brand would do…as you can see it was Betty Crocker this time)
  • 1 package of instant lemon pudding (make sure it’s instant!)
  • 4 eggs (yes, 4)
  • 1 cup of hot water (not warm, not scalding, but hot)
  • 1/2 cup Crisco oil (I used vegetable oil and you could too…unless you’re really into Crisco.)
  • 1/4 cup poppyseeds (This is one entire thing of the small 1.25 oz containers)
  • 1/4 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts – but experiment with whatever you’d like!)

How to Make:

Preheat that oven to 350 and then locate your hand mixer or if you’re extra special, electric mixer. (Again, very very very very jealous if you have the latter.) You are going to mix up everything (yes, even the nuts).

You’re going to mix everything for 4 minutes. Little arm workout in for those of us without the fancy schmancy electric mixer. (I had to find a bigger bowl because I was a moron and used a little, small one. Mom kindly suggested I use a bigger bowl to mix in. She’s so smart.)

Grab your two pans and spray them with Pam or rub them down with vegetable oil. Sprinkle flour into the pans and get all sides and the bottom coated in flour.

Pour your batter evenly amongst the two pans…even if you have two pans that aren’t quite the same size, like me. You want everything to cook evenly in the oven!

Try to restrain yourself from taste testing the batter….it’s soooooo tasty. But there are raw eggs in there, so it’s probably not a good idea.

Put the timer on 40 minutes, pulling the bread out to test for doneness at that time. It may need a few more minutes if your toothpick/wooden skewer/other doneness-testing device doesn’t come out clean from the top of the bread.

Here’s before the oven:

Once your breads are done, let them cool for a few minutes in the pans. Then gently slide them out to cool on a wire cooling rack or cutting board to finish cooling completely.

Here’s a slice, cooled and ready to be enjoyed. This is a perfect bread for holidays – easy to make ahead of time and it seems somewhat fancy, which is ideal for a festive occasion! It’s also extremely good to boot. Just sayin. 🙂

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Da Mama’s Potato Salad

6 Apr

Be prepared for several blog posts in the next few days – I have been a cooking machine! With assistance, of course. The majority of recipes coming up will be some “Vose Favorites” which are either homemade recipes or passed down through my parents.

First up is one of my personal favorites, great for Spring or Summer in particular. It’s my mama’s potato salad – Da Mama as she is often referred to. She made up this particular concoction, as many probably do with their potato salad recipes. I love this one because it’s both simple and full of bacon. I have no shame in admitting the latter.

You don’t need a terrible amount of ingredients:


  • 5 big Idaho potatoes – peeled and diced in quarters (or smaller pieces if they’re extra massive)
  • 1 celery stalk – diced
  • 2 hard boiled eggs – diced
  • 4 slices of bacon – diced
  • 1 tsp of relish
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (you can always add more as you go, but start with between 1/4 and 1/2 cup)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How to Make:

First up – locate two eggs.

Plop them into a saucepan with water and a dash of salt – boil them up. As soon as the water begins boil, put the lid on the saucepan and turn off the heat. Let it sit for 30 minutes. This is Da Mama’s process.

Meanwhile….grab your potatoes and your potato peeler. At one point, when I made Mom’s potato salad I had no utensils as I happened to be living in Europe and was dirt poor…I used a knife. If you choose the latter method – just be careful and don’t peel anything other than the potato. I speak from experience. Ouch doesn’t quite cover it.

If you have a sous chef – as I happened to last evening – have them dice up the celery while you’re peeling potatoes. Please harass them throughout the dicing/peeling process. It’s a necessary step.

Once you’ve peeled your potatoes, slice them in 4 or 6 pieces each, depending on the size. Note the nicely stacked diced celery. Nicely done sous chef.

Then pop the potatoes into a pot with water high enough to cover the potatoes. Boil them until when you stick them with a fork, the fork can easily splice the potato. Avoid overcooking – consistency of cooked carrots (aka gross mush). Avoid undercooking – consistency of apples (aka crunchy).

After your eggs sat for their 30 minutes with the lid on, pour out the water and pour in cold water instead. Again, let your eggs hang out for 30 minutes in their new cold water bath. This is the continuation of the Da Mama’s process.

Now it’s bacon time! Grab four slices and lay them on top of a paper towel upon a large dinner plate. Pop into the microwaved and heat in 1 minute increments, flipping them each time. Or, if you’re into the stovetop cooking – fry up your bacon that way. Depends on how much time you’d like to devote to both cooking the bacon and cleaning the splatter after. I usually cook via stovetop – but Mom insisted with the microwave to both save time and her stovetop from grease dots.

Once your bacon is thoroughly cooked, dice it up into small pieces. When the potatoes are cooked – dice them up into bite size pieces and throw them into a bowl. Dice up the hard boiled eggs too once they’ve finished their cooling process. Throw in the celery too.

Throw in the mayonnaise. Start with only a bit…about 1/4 cup. Stir it in and assess how much you need to add in. I added just about 1/2 cup total. Mix in all in. Everything should be lightly coated but not glooping (is that a word?) with mayonnaise. That would be gross. Don’t do it.

Now, add in your bacon. Doesn’t it look excellent? It MAKES the potato salad. I’m not joking. One bit.

At this point you can also add in your tsp of relish. Mix it all in – salt and pepper it up as well. More pepper than salt. Lotsa (yes, that’s a word) of pepper according to Da Mama.

You have now made the best potato salad on the planet. Be very pleased with yourself. Then, dish yourself a nice full dish and devour it. Maybe you even want a nice full larger dish. No judgment from this person. Mmm…Da Mama’s Potato Salad.

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