Prairie Views

~ Dreamy abstraction in Four Square House on the Pairie

Month: July 2012 (page 1 of 6)

Savory Pot Roast

This is very much like the sauerbraten I make but quicker to make since you do not marinate it ahead of time. It still makes a delicious main dish for your meal. I started the roast in a skillet to brown and stared cooking and then transferred the meat to a slow cooker to complete.  I then made some mashed potatoes and mixed vegetables. The recipe did not make a gravy but I did using two tablespoons of cornstarch and then one heaping teaspoon of yogurt or sour cream.

1 3 lb. pot roast or any type of roast you prefer
oil for frying
1/4 cup wine vinegar
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup catsup (ketchup)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

In a pan brown the meat in a small amount of oil. Sprinkle a little salt on top. Mix the remaining ingredients. Cover tightly and simmer for 2 hours or until tender. Remove the meat to a platter to rest before slicing. Skim the excess fat from the sauce and spoon over the meat or make a gravy.

Simple Fruit Salad

Sometimes simple is best. I like to buy different types of fruit and them mix them together with the juice of one lemon and two limes. This makes an easy fruit bowl to have in the refrigerator for a quick snack or to add to meals. This one has cantaloupe, grapes, banana, pineapple and mango. I have added others such as kiwi and watermelon.

Pork Chops with Grapes

I have been wanting to make this recipe for a while but I never seemed to have grapes left. It is a strange recipe and I was not sure it would really come out very good. It is not bad and I think I will make it again with some adjustments. I did not use the sour cream in the recipe to make a sauce but will do so in the future. All you need is mustard, salt, pepper, grapes and sour cream. When I served the chops I did not put the grapes on the plates. Maybe they would look okay with the sour cream but I think setting some grapes aside and putting them on the plate uncooked would be best.


4 Pork chops
Mustard ( I used Dijon mustard)
1/2 cup Sour Cream


Put chops into a pan with around 1 tablespoon butter. Salt and pepper and add a thin layer of prepared mustard on each chop. Turn after browned and repeat with the salt, pepper and mustard on that side. Add 25 to 30 grapes to pan and put a lid on the pan and cook until done. Remove the chops and most of the grease from the pan. Add the sour cream and mix well. Place chops on serving plate and put the sour cream mixture on top.

Will Wildlife Bridges Work?

I have always wondered if a bridge or underpass would work for wildlife each time I drive any distance to Topeka I-70 seems to have a lot of dead animals.  There are some organizations that are working on this idea. One is the Rocky Mountain Wild with their I-70 Wildlife Bridge Project and Conservation Northwest. Washington State is funding the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass East ProjectOntario has build their fist bridge and it will be interesting how it works and does it work. This concept has been done in France in the 1950’s and apparently  600 tunnels are installed along roads in the Netherlands to help protect the endangered European badger. I do not remember seeing any in each country but maybe I just did not realize they had them. But do they work or are they just a waste of money. Conservationists Paul Beier and Andrew Gregory from Northern Arizona University claim there is little evidence to suggest they work. They have created a crowd-sourcing site to collect data. It would be great if they work. I am thinking about the ponghorn  antelope in Kansas but less of any type of animals along the road would be better.

Are Cities Trying To Control Business Excessively?

Really? Are cities going to stop business from coming in because it does not have the same values of the city.  How not allowing because stance against gay marriage? This is what is happening to Chick-fil-A. How about the Boy Scouts and ban on Jews and gays? Is Chicago going to stop allowing Boy Scouts in the city? How about Hobby Lobby closing on Sundays?  Is Chicago not going to allow any Hobby Lobbys because of  Green’s stance?  Green also closes stores early so people can go home to families and worship at church. He also pays better than all or most retail business so maybe those jobs could help the city. I believe some cities are going to hurt their growth with because of these restrictions. I also personally do not like Government telling business owners or presidents what they can say and try to control their hours of operation as long as they do not openly discriminate for employment.

Couscous Wheat Salad

Chicken Piccata is right now one of my favorite ways to prepare chicken. I usually prepare a Rice Pilaf  but wanted a change. I haven’t had Couscous in a while so I decided to have it but not my usually way which is cooked in a broth with spices. It was time for a change so I decided to make a Wheat Salad. It is so easy to prepare and was a nice summer starch for the chicken and I have tomatoes, cucumber and zucchini in the garden.  The variations you can make so this salad is endless. Add ingredients as you like or have on hand and let you  imagination go. This would make a great lunch box food to have in your fridge. I stayed with the typical lemon and olive oil and would had added fresh basil but did not want to go out in the heat. Yes, I know lazy.


1 box plain couscous , cooked as directions with black pepper and then cooled in refrigerator
1 medium cucumber, halved, and sliced thin
1 tomato chopped or small tomatoes
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon, juiced


In a large bowl mixed the cooled couscous oil and lemon juice. Place in serving container and top with the feta and vegetables. Serve.

Economic Impact of the Budget Control Act of 2011



George Mason University just prepared an impact report that is going to be created by the Budget Control Act of 2011 Keith Hennessey has a summary. Most of the effects will not be seen until 2013 so I suspect cuts will be done in the next fiscal year to contracts and indirect job loses. The fiscal year will start beginning in October which is a short 2 1/2 months away.


Some of the states will take cuts as large as a city and others is so small the change will be negotiable. Their conclusions is the impact will be significant on the economy.

Quail in Yard

Quail in Yard

Taken last night when I saw the quail in the yard. There was more in my vegetable garden. I

Polite Cease and Desist Order With True Southern Style

It seems  Jack Daniels felt that the cover design for Patrick Wensink’s newest novel“Broken Piano For President, looks a little too much like its Old No. 7 label. They sent a cease and desist order without the usually lawyer fanfare. It became wonderful publicity for both sides and Lazy Fascist Press with redo the Cover. He blogged about the experience.

Aurora Massacre: What Does the Location of the Gas Mask Tell Us? What About Security Cameras? Are They Related?

When I first saw this I was wondering about the event myself. There are a lot of unanswered questions.

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